Pauliann Long, LCSW-C

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Are You Experiencing Depression? – How to Spot the Signs

Millions of people are affected by depression every day. There are so many different levels of depression. Plus, anxiety often accompanies depression. Because of this, it’s not always easy to spot the signs.

The more you understand about varying degrees of depression, the better. It doesn’t always look the same for everyone.

With that being said, there are some things to look for and keep in mind when it comes to depression. While the condition should be professionally diagnosed, it’s still a good idea to understand the signs.

Thankfully, it’s easier to do than most people think. Are you worried you might be experiencing signs of depression? Look for some of these telltale symptoms.

Retreating from Relationships

Experiencing depression often makes people feel like retreating or avoiding spending time with people. Unfortunately, that can lead to feelings of isolation, making things even worse.

As you might have guessed, one of the best ways to cope with this symptom is to find some kind of companionship.

Talking to a friend on the phone, joining a relevant support group, or even spending time with a pet can help.

Feelings of Exhaustion

Although depression is a mental condition, it often affects people in very physical ways.

One of the biggest physical symptoms you might feel is exhaustion or fatigue.

Exhaustion manifests itself in many ways. It may prevent you from getting out of bed in the morning. Also, exhaustion can hinder you from getting help when you need it most.

It’s common to feel as though you don’t have energy if you’re depressed. Being able to pull yourself up and do something as simple as taking a walk around the block can help.

In fact, exercise is a great way to combat depression. Taking that first step and “forcing” yourself to get moving will often help a lot.

Sleeping Issues

One sign of depression that often contributes to exhaustion and fatigue is if you have trouble sleeping. It’s common to experience changes in your sleep cycle or habits when you’re suffering from depression.

As a result, you’re less likely to get a good night’s rest, which makes it even harder to get out of bed in the morning.

Spotting sleep issues means paying attention to when you go to bed, how well you sleep, and what you feel like in the morning. Many people opt for a sleep or dream journal to help keep track of any sleep issues.

Feelings of Mental Weakness

Depression often leaves us feeling weak like we’re not in control of our own lives. That feeling of powerlessness usually leads to feelings of hopelessness for the future. As a result, it becomes harder to look forward to anything, and easier to fall deeper into a depressed state.

Negative feelings are a common sign of depression. Many times, you’ll have a pessimistic attitude toward things. Again, that makes it easy to feel hopeless and lets the depression take an even stronger hold.

These pessimistic thoughts are rarely realistic. So, it’s important to be able to push them aside. It isn’t always easy to do that on your own, in which case professional therapy or counseling can really make a difference.

When to Seek Help

It’s easy for depression to take over your life. The signs may start out feeling insignificant, and you may ignore them at first. But, if you continue to ignore them for long, they can eventually become debilitating.

As suggested above, getting help can make all the difference in dealing with depression. Different forms of treatment and management work well for different people. It’s all about finding the right solution for you.

If you sense that something in your life is off-kilter, please seek help.

A therapist can support you moving through symptoms of depression so you can live a fulfilling and contented life.

Please, reach out today if you suspect you’re struggling with depression.

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