Depression is more than just having the blues occasionally. It’s a persistent and often debilitating mood disorder that affects how you feel, think and act. According to the World Health Organization, depression is a leading cause of disability worldwide, making it crucial for you to recognize its symptoms and understand when to seek professional help.
We’ve created this guide to explain what constitutes depression, its leading symptoms and the most effective treatments.
Everyday Sadness vs. Depression
Everyone feels sad or low at some points in their lives. These feelings are a natural, healthy emotional response to specific events like losing a loved one or experiencing high stress levels at work.
However, depression is different due to characteristics like these.
- Persistent: Symptoms last for at least two weeks but often much longer.
- Pervasive: Your mood affects nearly every aspect of your daily life, from eating and sleeping to working and socializing.
- Not always linked to a specific event: While circumstances like job loss can trigger depression, it can also occur without any apparent cause.
Signs You Might Need a Depression Screening
If you’ve been experiencing any of the following symptoms for an extended period, it might be time to consider a depression screening:
- Persistent sadness, hopelessness, guilt or emptiness
- A loss of interest in activities you once enjoyed
- Significant changes in appetite or weight
- Insomnia or hypersomnia
- Fatigue or lack of energy
- Difficulty concentrating or making decisions
- Thoughts of death or suicide
Treatment Methods for Depression
Many depression cases respond well to treatment. Some of the most effective methods are as follows.
- Talk therapy: By working with a therapist, you can learn coping skills for depression. Cognitive behavioral therapy and interpersonal therapy are especially helpful techniques.
- Medications: Depending on your symptoms, a doctor or psychiatrist may prescribe you an antidepressant to keep your mood on an even keel.
- Lifestyle changes: Regular exercise, a balanced diet, restful sleep and avoiding alcohol and drugs can help you manage depression.
- Alternative therapies: Acupuncture, meditation and yoga might offer relief in some cases.
Know When to Seek Help
Understanding and accepting that you might be dealing with depression requires courage. At Palm Springs Behavioral Health, our team of compassionate professionals can help you overcome depression with the most recent evidence-based advances and interventions. Our client-first philosophy ensures you receive the care you need in a comfortable, nurturing environment.
You don’t have to live in the depths of depression anymore. Reach out to us today for a brighter, more fulfilling tomorrow.