Most people think depression means extreme sadness. But sadness is not the only way depression manifests itself. That is why people often mistake it as boredom, lack of interest, and apathy. If you don’t realize your friend is depressed, their changed behavior may make you think they don’t care for you anymore. Same with the family members. This often leads to people feeling angry and leaving the patient, making the depressed person feel lonelier.
That is why everyone needs to know the common symptoms of depression so they can help the affected person, instead of feeling angry at them.
7 most common symptoms of depression
Loss of interest in activities that require an effort:
Depressed people lose interest in activities that were previously pleasurable for them. This includes spending quality time with friends and family members. Instead, they prefer spending time on activities that don’t require much effort from them. They would much rather watch TV all day than chat with you. This doesn’t mean they have lost interest in you. They just don’t have the will to make that much effort.
Depression may make sleeping difficult for the patients. They have difficulty falling and staying asleep. If your spouse is depressed, you may often find him or her sitting alone in another room instead of sleeping. This doesn’t mean they can’t stand being in the same place as you. They just can’t sleep.
Eating problems may also be symptoms of depression:
Along with other behavioral alterations, the eating habits of the depressed person may change too. They may start eating too little or too much, leading to a drastic increase or decrease in their weight. They know their food intake and weight loss or gain is unhealthy. But they don’t care.
Loss of confidence:
Depressed people don’t feel good about themselves and their life. This results in poor self-esteem and a loss of confidence. If you notice any such marked change in your friend or family member, be careful. Observe them carefully and try to understand what’s troubling them.
One of the most common symptoms of depression is that the patient’s thoughts tend to remain on the negative side. They may consider even a happy event with a negative outlook and put a damper on even your enthusiasm. Everything seems useless to them. And life has no interest.
Anger and irritability:
Depressed people may appear irritable and angry for no reason. Don’t think they are angry at you. Even they may not know what is making them irritable. Even if they know, they won’t attempt to control the situation.
This is what makes depression so dangerous. If left untreated, it may lead to suicide. Your friend or loved one may make statements like, “I don’t care for life. It’s useless” or “sometimes I feel like jumping down from the balcony.” Don’t ignore such statements. They indicate grave danger. The depressed person is not just saying such things. He or she may actually do it.
Conclusion: Never ignore the symptoms of depression.
Depression doesn’t mean a person is too weak to deal with life’s challenges. It is a serious but treatable mental problem. The symptoms mentioned above don’t always mean depression. They may just be effects of exhaustion, stress, anxiety, or burnout. But if you notice more than one of these symptoms in your loved one over a prolonged period, take heed. Help your friend get proper treatment so he or she can live a healthy and happy life too.
You can know more about the symptoms of depression HERE.