Down with the Blues: 5 Things You May Not Have Known About Depression

Depression is a mental illness that affects millions of people each year. According to the Anxiety and Depression Association of America, depression is “a condition in which a person feels discouraged, sad, hopeless, unmotivated, or disinterested in life in general.” These symptoms can last from two weeks to two years. Here are 5 facts about depression that you may have known.

  1. There are various forms of depression, based on what kind of symptoms you are experiencing. Some variations are: major depression, bipolar depression, Seasonal Affective Disorder (SAD), melancholia, psychotic depression, antenatal and postnatal depression, psychotic depression, cyclothymic disorder, and dysthymic disorder.
  2. About 6.7% of American adults will experience major depression each year.
  3. Women are more likely to be depressed than men.
  4. As of 2012, over 80% of people who have major depression are not getting help for it.
  5. About half of the people that are diagnosed with depression also have an anxiety disorder.

You can have your bad days–we all do. But if you are experiencing the following symptoms constantly (or longer than two weeks), you may need help.

  • Feeling hopeless, sad, anxious, guilty, angry or annoyed, “empty”, worthless, or overwhelmed
  • No desire to do anything that you used to like to do
  • Weight gain/loss
  • Increase or decrease in sleep
  • Physical aches or pains
  • Thoughts of suicide or longing for death.

If you are experiencing any of these symptoms, seek help as soon as possible.