It’s normal to go through a number of ups and downs over the course of our lives, but it’s important to recognize when you're feeling something more serious.
In our society, the way we talk about these “down” moments says a lot about what we expect from people when they’re feeling this way. “Be strong,” “Keep moving,” “Choose hope,” “Never give up.” We’re often expected to make the best of a bad situation, but what if the solution isn’t so easy?
For those who are suffering from depression, it’s more than just feelings of temporary sadness. If you identify with several of the following signs, you should consider getting screened for depression this National Depression Screening Day, October 9:
1. Your sleeping habits are far from healthy.
Those with depression often first consult their doctor because of sleeping disturbances they've experienced. These can include difficulty falling asleep, staying asleep, or even sleeping throughout the day.
2. You can’t concentrate.
Individuals who are depressed often report difficulty with focusing when giving or receiving direction, comprehending what they're reading, and an inability to remember specific details.
3. You feel hopeless.
Although feelings of hopelessness are common among individuals with clinical depression, they can be some of the most difficult feelings to experience. This can include feelings of dissatisfaction, failure, and a belief that nothing will get better.
4. Your eating habits have changed.
Individuals with depression often experience a distinct change in their eating habits. Some lose their appetite completely and experience dramatic weight loss, while others feel like they can’t stop eating.
5. Your tolerance level is low.
You feel like everyone and everything is getting on your nerves. Agitation and a short temper are common feelings of those with depression.
6. You feel worthless.
Depression can increase your feelings of self-loathing, worthlessness and guilt. Depression can make you extremely self-critical for real or perceived mistakes.
7. You have unexplained aches and pains.
Depression is very much a physical reality as well as a mental one. You may notice an increase in muscle aches, headaches, and back or stomach pain.
Depression can cause the same amount of pain, can interfere with your daily life, and most importantly, can be treated just like physical illnesses can. If you think you may be suffering from depression, take the first step toward healing with a free, anonymous depression screening here.