Recognizing Depression Symptoms
Recognizing Depression Symptoms
If you think that you may be depressed, there are a few things you can do to recognize the symptoms of depression. Symptoms of depression are often similar in children, teens, and adults. Children may show signs of sadness, irritability, and worry. Older children may refuse to attend school, feel grouchy, and be overly negative. While these symptoms are common in many children, they can signal the beginning of a serious depression problem.
Physical symptoms of depression include erratic sleeping patterns, a lack of appetite, and constant fatigue. People with depression may also experience muscle and joint pain, back pain, and a lack of sleep. They may also feel more restless than usual and have a reduced ability to focus or pay attention to others. Symptoms of depression may affect relationships, work, and school. A health care professional can perform tests to diagnose depression and prescribe medication. It is important to find a doctor who has the necessary training to diagnose depression in a patient.
Teens with depression may feel sad and irritable, lose or gain weight, feel hopeless, and become withdrawn from their daily activities. They may feel guilty for not doing something for which they are usually blaming. Thoughts of suicide may also be a symptom of depression. In some cases, these thoughts are triggered by major life events or a family history of suicide. If your child displays these symptoms, contact a mental health care professional immediately to help them understand what’s causing their depressed mood.
Changes in hormones may also lead to depression. Women’s hormone levels fluctuate during perimenopause, and insomnia can also lead to depression. In addition, medications used to treat chronic illnesses may cause symptoms of depression. Hypothyroidism, a thyroid disorder, can be mistaken for depression. The causes of depression vary among men and women, but it is common for both genders to experience the symptoms of depression. For example, a woman’s depression may be related to a family member who has depression.
Some depression symptoms may be a sign of a larger problem, like bipolar depression or seasonal affective disorder (SAD). The condition is caused by genetics, biological factors, and the environment. People with this disorder are at higher risk for anxiety disorders and unipolar depression than those without it. Symptoms may also be due to a combination of factors, including stress. This means that the cause for depression is not as easy to determine as it might be to detect in the first place.
Studies have shown that women are more likely to suffer from depression than men, but there is no definitive gender difference in the prevalence of the disorder. In Canada, women are twice as likely to experience depression than men. The gender difference in depression appears to be decreasing with age, though there are still some gender differences. Women’s hormonal changes, such as during pregnancy and postpartum, may contribute to this increased risk. Likewise, men with depression typically feel irritable and discouraged and may be harder to detect.