Trigger Warning: in this article there is discussion of suicide, death and other mental health topics. The contents of this blog are not intended to be a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis, or treatment. Always seek the advice of your physician or another qualified health provider with any questions you may have regarding a medical condition. In the event of a medical emergency, please call your doctor or 911 or other local emergency numbers immediately. Review the links at the end of the article for services you can reach out to for help.
Traditionally, depression is known as a chemical imbalance within the brain. For instance, an insufficient amount of the neurotransmitters serotonin, norepinephrine, and dopamine. The low levels of these neurotransmitters is what causes the symptoms of depression, which are caused by disrupted neural circuits in the brain. Therefore, it is important to recognize, and to seek proper treatment when displaying symptoms of depression. As this mood disorder can impact your day to day functioning.
1. Increased sleep problems or feelings of fatigue
Depression can cause a great sense of fatigue and a lack of energy. It is also linked with insomnia, and cause a lack of quality sleep which can also lead to anxiety.
Sufferers from depression often times have problems getting out of bed and go on with their needed activities. The sufferer may sleep too much or too little, both of which are a problem to their sleep. The sufferer may also stay in bed due to a lack of motivation to carry out their needed activities.
2. Hopeless outlook on life
Having a hopeless outlook on life is one of the most common symptoms of clinical depression. Major depression is a mood disorder that affects the individual’s outlook on life in general, giving them a sense of hopelessness and helplessness.
Other common feelings caused by depression are inappropriate guilt, worthlessness and self-hate. The sufferer may often blames themselves for misfortunes that has nothing to do with their behavior. Or they may feel a lack of purpose for the things that they do.
3. Lost of interest
Depression can diminish the feelings of pleasure of the activities that the individual normally enjoy. Causing withdrawal from the individual’s hobbies and usual entertainment. The individual may refuse to participate in those activities they once enjoyed, such as socializing, sports, art, video games or music.
The sufferer may also loose interest in sex, which is another symptom of depression. This includes a decreased sex drive or impotence.
4. Change in weight and appetite
Depression can cause the individual’s weight and appetite to fluctuate. This experience may look quite different for each individual, as some may experience an increased appetite and weight gain while others will not feel much hunger and thus loose weight.
Some individuals may experience a lack of interest in food, which may cause weight loss and even other health issued.
Whether or not the dietary change is intentional is important. If the change is not intentional, it is very likely that it is cause by depression.
5. Serious thoughts of death
Depression is sometimes related to suicide. According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, more than 42,000 people died in the United States back in 2013.
Usually, people who die of suicide normally show symptoms first. They may speak about ending their life, or make their first attempt. If you think someone is at risk of harming themselves or another person:
- Please call 911 or your local emergency number.
- Remove any knives, medications, guns, or other items that may be used to cause harm.
- Stay with the person until help arrives.
6. Uncontrollable emotions
Depression can cause drastic mood swings. Nothing in the external world is causing such change in emotions, however the individual’s emotions are going up and down within minutes. The individual may feel a sense of anger followed by sadness, or vice versa.
The person may not know what is causing such feelings themselves.
If multiple of the above signs applies to you or someone you know, please go speak to your doctor or help your loved one get the help that they need.
There are many ways of treatment that are proven to be effective, and will improve your quality of life.
It is important to seek proper treatment as it is for your best interest.
Note: The Free Your Mind Mental Health Society is an independent youth-led organization. The contents of this blog are not intended to be a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis, or treatment. Always seek the advice of your physician or another qualified health provider with any questions you may have regarding a medical condition. In the event of a medical emergency, please call your doctor or 911 or other local emergency numbers immediately.
Kids Help Phone – Call 1-800-668-6868, Text 686868
Trevor’s Project : providing crisis intervention and suicide prevention services to lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, queer & questioning (LGBTQ) young people under 25. Call 1-866-488-7386, Website https://www.thetrevorproject.org/get-help-now/
Calgary Distress Centre: 403-266-HELP (4357)
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Yang CC, Barrós-Loscertales A, Pinazo D, et al. State and training effects of mindfulness meditation on brain networks reflect neuronal mechanisms of its antidepressant effect. Neural Plast. 2016;2016:9504642.
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