Before going to the signs of depression, let us first understand the word ‘depression’. Nowadays, it has become very common for people to call themselves ‘depressed’, thanks to the rocket speed of our life. Today, stress is prevalent in youth and children and if we do not learn to housekeep or manage his mind, the day when even newborns would be depressed is not far off.
Feeling low or dip in enthusiasm occasionally is common especially when we face troubles, setbacks or disappointments. It is okay to feel sad sometimes but if you are stuck in emptiness and despair without being able to come out of it then it is called depression.
In fact, depressed people (at one end of the spectrum) feel lifeless, empty, and apathetic like living in a perpetual gloom or angry, restless and aggressive on the other end of the spectrum.
Following are the common signs seen in depressed people:
• Suffering from inability to sleep (insomnia) or too much sleep
• Lack of concentration; inability to complete tasks that were easy in the past
• Feeling hopeless or helpless
• Unable to keep negative thoughts at bay
• Loss of appetite or too much eating
• More aggressive, short tempered or irritable than before
• Reckless behavior; too much alcohol intake
• Suicidal thoughts that just would not go away – this is a serious symptom; if you spot this, get an immediate help
• Lack of interest to socialize or to be friends company which gave enjoyment in the past
• Lack of ability to feel joy or pleasure; Daily activities become a burden or a chore
• No more interest in hobbies or pastimes;
• A significant loss or gain of weight without intending to do so.
• Frequent feeling of fatigue and physical exhaustion at even small tasks
• Strong feelings of guilt, self pity or worthlessness
• Trouble in decision making, focusing or remembering important things
• Engaging in compulsive behavior such as irrational gambling, wild driving, drug abuse etc
However there is no need to panic if you see one or more of the above signs of depression in you or in your family or friends. It is normal human experience to feel such emotional dips. The key to understand is that ‘Time is a great healer’ and if such lows and dips do not fade away with passing time, then it is a clear sign of needing professional help.