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MENTAL WELLNESS

DEPRESSION

 

Introduction

Depression is more widely experienced than most people realise. It can range from mild short term depression, to a deep long term depression that is completely debilitating and can destroy ones life, business, career and relationships.

Depression involves the body, mood, and thoughts. It affects the way a person eats and sleeps, the way one feels about oneself, and the way one thinks about things. A depressive disorder is not the same as a passing blue mood. It is not a sign of personal weakness or a condition that can be willed or wished away.

For a quick guide to determine whether you may be suffering from depression, take this quick quiz.

 

Quick Depression Quiz

  1. Do you feel sad or irritable?
  2. Have you lost interest in activities you once enjoyed?
  3. Have you experienced changes in weight or appetite?
  4. Do you have feelings of guilt?
  5. Are you unable to concentrate, remember things, or make decisions?
  6. Have you experienced fatigue or loss of energy?
  7. Have you noticed any change in sleep habits; not able to sleep, disruptive sleep, too much sleep?
  8. Have you experienced restlessness or decreased activity noticed by others?
  9. Do you feel hopeless, or worthless?
  10. Have you had thoughts of suicide or death?


According to The National Mental Health Association, 5 or more yes answers indicates that you may be suffering from clinical depression. This test cannot substitute for a visit to a mental health professional. It is ONLY meant to give you an idea where to start a dialogue with your healthcare provider.

If any of these common signs of depression last for more than two weeks, speak to your doctor.

 

Treatment for Depression

Don’t ignore the warning signs. Left untreated, serious depression can lead to suicide. The suicide rate is increasing in older adults, particularly in older men living alone.

People with a depressive illness cannot merely "pull themselves together" and get better. Without treatment, symptoms can last for weeks, months, or years. Appropriate treatment, however, can help most people who suffer from depression.

Depression in Women

Depression in the Elderly

 

Further Help

There are many excellent organisations to help those with depression.

USA

General Depression

National Institute of Mental Health (NIMH)

National Mental Health Association

Center for Mental Health Services (CMHS) Knowledge Exchange Network (KEN)

National Foundation for Depressive Illness, Inc.

Depression Related Disorders

Depression and Related Affected Disorders Association

National Alliance for Research on Schizophrenia and Depression

Depression and Bipolar Support Alliance (DBSA)

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