Do you sometimes wonder if you are clinically depressed and not just experiencing an occasional bout of the blues? Do you worry that someone you love is depressed?
There are many symptoms of depression. The presence of several of the following would suggest that you are depressed:
- Sad or blue mood which lasts for weeks or months.
- Spells of crying when you might not even know what you are crying about.
- A sleep disorder. Either you have trouble sleeping at night or you sleep too much.
- Chronic fatigue or a lack of energy. You feel exhausted during the day for no apparent reasons, unless you've had trouble sleeping at night.
- A lack of, or diminished, enjoyment in life. You rarely or never have fun anymore.
- A lack of, or diminished, motivation. You find it difficult to finish your chores, work productively or start those projects which need to be done.
- Poor self-esteem. You feel worthless or useless.
- Suicidal thoughts or plans. Life just doesn't seem worth living any longer.
- Difficulty concentrating or making decisions. You have trouble reading a book, for example, or can't decide about an important issue.
- An appetite disorder. Either you're not hungry, and so have lost weight, or you eat too much.
If it is determined that you may be clinically depressed, please be assured there are treatments available which are successful in relieving depression. There are now many newer anti-depressant medications which are more effective with fewer side effects. There are also many things you can do in psychotherapy to feel better such as improve your self-esteem, develop more positive ways of thinking, bring more fun into you life, improve your marriage, develop a network of caring friends, exercise, and/or improve you spiritual life.
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