Published on February 26, 2022
Clinical depression, or major depressive disorder, is a relatively common condition. However, many individuals go undiagnosed and therefore untreated because they are not aware of the symptoms. This blog lists some of the symptoms that could indicate the presence of depression.
Symptoms of Depression
A passing mood change of feeling low due a temporary event such as a grieve does not qualify for clinical depression. Clinical depression is diagnosed when symptoms are present for most days for at least 6 months. Common feelings and thoughts include:
- A feeling of being down or hopelessness
- A negative view of self, the environment and the future
- An inability to feel pleasure
- Thoughts of worthlessness, guilt and shame
Self-harm or suicidal thoughts indicate an urgent need to see a healthcare professional.
Effect on Routine Activities
- The day-to-day activities may be affected. The person may find it difficult to concentrate
- The energy levels may be low with slowing of movements and thoughts
- Social activities may be avoided
- Sleep and appetite may suffer, or may be excessive
Some people with depression may not suffer from the usual symptoms. Some of the following symptoms may be present instead:
- Physical symptoms such as fatigue, muscle aches or pains instead of emotional symptoms.
- Anger, irritability and/or agitation
- Psychotic symptoms such as delusions or hallucinations often related to worthlessness, guilt etc.
Associated Psychological Conditions
Several people with clinical depression may suffer from other disorders such anxiety disorders, substance use disorders and obsessive-compulsive disorder. Thus, symptoms related to these conditions such as constant worry, a compulsion to do things repeatedly etc. may also be noted in people with clinical depression.
Reach for Help
In most cases, depression can be controlled with medicines and counseling, which improve mood, improve productivity and help affected individuals to lead a normal life. Therefore, anyone who suffers the above symptoms should reach out for help. As mentioned earlier, any thoughts of self harm or suicide require immediate attention.
Bains N, Abdijadid S. Major Depressive Disorder. [Updated 2021 Apr 20]. In: StatPearls [Internet]. Treasure Island (FL): StatPearls Publishing; 2022 Jan-. Available from: https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/books/NBK559078/ Available under http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/4.0/
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