Feeling down when something difficult or stressful happens (like a break-up with your partner or losing your job) is a part of life. These things happen all the time. And usually, these feelings fade over time, and you get on with life's activities.
If it is depression, unfortunately, these feelings persist, even when things improve.
The way you feel when you are depressed is connected to:
- Your thoughts and what you think about
- The way you behave or act
- What happened to you in the past
- Things going on around you now
- the way stress hormones affect your brain.
All depression will be helped by better self-care. For mild depression, self-help techniques (like physical activity, for example) can make a big difference. Understanding what is happening to you goes a long way in trying to solve it.
Here are some signs and symptoms that you should watch out for:
- Endlessly feeling down and hopeless
- Finding yourself having little interest or find joy from the things you used to do previously
Other possible signs and symptoms
- irritability or restlessness
- feeling tired all the time, or a general loss of energy
- feeling empty, lonely
- sleeping problems - too much, or too little
- losing or gaining weight
- feeling bad about yourself or things you have done
- problems with concentration
- reduced sex drive
- thinking about death a lot
- thoughts of harming yourself
In the upcoming steps, we will share how to cope with this struggle.