Depression, known medically as Major Depressive Disorder (MDD), is a common and serious mental health condition that negatively affects how you feel, think, and act. It's more than just feeling sad or experiencing a temporary low mood – it is a persistent problem, lasting for at least two weeks, that interferes with your daily life and routine.
According to the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders (DSM-5), symptoms of depression may include a persistent sad, anxious, or "empty" mood, feelings of hopelessness, irritability, decreased energy, feelings of worthlessness, and changes in appetite or sleep. It's also possible to experience physical symptoms, such as aches or digestive problems.
Consider seeking professional help if you notice any of the following:
Persistent feelings of sadness, emptiness, or hopelessness
Loss of interest in activities you once enjoyed
Significant changes in appetite or weight
Difficulty sleeping or sleeping too much
Feeling tired all the time or having little to no energy
Difficulty thinking, concentrating, or making decisions
Frequent thoughts of death or suicide
Depression is one of the most treatable mental health disorders. There are a variety of treatment methods available that can help you manage your symptoms and improve your quality of life. Cognitive Behavioral Therapy (CBT) has been found to be particularly effective, as it can help you identify and change thought patterns that lead to feelings of depression. Medications, such as antidepressants, may also be recommended.
For some individuals, a combination of therapy and medication works best. In certain cases, lifestyle modifications – such as regular exercise, a healthy diet, and ample sleep – can also be helpful. Remember that treatment is unique to each individual and what works best will depend on your personal situation and needs.
If you're living with depression, remember that you don't have to navigate this journey alone. Our team of highly skilled and compassionate psychologists are ready to support you. Why not give us a call today? Take the first step towards finding relief and reclaiming the life you deserve.