What do some people do in order to understand the symptoms of depression?

    Depression is more than just feeling sad or going through a rough patch. It's a serious mental health condition that requires understanding, treatment, and a good recovery plan. With early detection, diagnosis, and a treatment plan comprising of self-care, medications, therapy, lifestyle changes, and peer and family support, many people do get better. However, the first step to recovery is understanding the symptoms.

    Some people get into a deep depression because they don't feel supported. Perhaps they are in the hospital being treated for cancer or something else that is equally serious. And they don't have people around to make decisions for them. They have to make all the decisions on their own, even though they are under the influence of a deeply chaotic and depressing disease. (this actually happened to me, it was one of the most important things that I reached a had the support of) having someone help you make decisions when your brain isn't fully engaged with reality, it's something I think many people are missing as they go through any sort of devastating health issue.

    There are quite a few states in the US that have numbers you can dial, numbers that let you talk to someone about anything. In fact, I called one of those numbers a few years ago. And even after I felt very relieved, the person on the other end of the phone didn't wanna let me go. They really cared and even though as I am writing this, I remember the stress that I was under when I called them.

Depression symptoms can be diverse and vary from mild to severe. They include:

1. Persistent Sadness or Low Mood: This is often described as a persistent feeling of sadness or a lack of interest in outside stimuli. You may find little enjoyment in activities you used to love.

2. Loss of Energy or Increased Fatigue: People with depression may experience extreme tiredness or a lack of energy to engage in daily activities.

3. Changes in Appetite or Weight: Some people may experience a lack of appetite and subsequent weight loss, while others may have increased cravings for food and gain weight.

4. Difficulty Sleeping or Oversleeping: Insomnia, particularly waking in the early hours of the morning, or oversleeping (also known as hypersomnia) can be a symptom of depression.

5. Restlessness or Slowed Movements and Speech: This symptom may manifest as an increase in agitation, hand-wringing, pacing, or slowing down of movement and speech.

6. Feelings of Worthlessness or Guilt: Individuals with depression often have feelings of worthlessness or guilt over perceived failures or faults.

7. Difficulty Concentrating or Making Decisions: Depression can cause problems with memory, thinking clearly, concentration, and making decisions.

8. Unexplained Physical Problems: These might include back pain or headaches and other aches and pains that don’t seem to have any other cause and that don’t respond to usual treatments.

9. Thoughts of Death or Suicide: Some people with depression may have thoughts of death or suicide, or suicide attempts.

    It's important to remember that these symptoms must be severe enough to cause noticeable problems in relationships with others or in day-to-day activities, such as work, school, or social activities, and have a significant impact on the individual's ability to function to meet the clinical definition of depression.

    Depression can affect anyone—even a person who appears to live in relatively ideal circumstances. If you're feeling any of these symptoms, it's essential to reach out to a healthcare provider or a trusted person in your life. There's no need to feel ashamed or alone—help is available, and you're worth it.

Note: This information is for educational purposes only and is not a substitute for professional health services or treatment. If you're feeling suicidal or in crisis, contact a professional immediately.

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