HomeHealthHow do you recognize the symptoms of depression?

How do you recognize the symptoms of depression?

Many people say that they are “depressed”, but the momentary sadness of losing a job or having a relationship failure cannot be called depression. A persistent loss of joy in life and a predominant feeling of sadness and depression, sleep disturbances and the reduction of daily activities to a minimum may be the first symptoms of this disorder. Which symptoms should attract our attention?

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Sadness or depression already?

Depression (Latin: depressio), according to data from the World Health Organization, is the most frequent mental disorder. It is estimated that up to a dozen percent of adults around the world struggle with depression. In Poland, over 5% of the population can suffer from illness, and more and more cases are reported among adolescents and even children.

Everyone sometimes feels sad and depressed as a consequence of everyday events. However, if these feelings accompany us more and more often and longer, we should consider whether they are not the first symptoms of depression. This disorder can be multidimensional and take various forms, and therefore it is not easy to recognize and many people affected by it remain undiagnosed.

The causes of depression

It is difficult for doctors to pinpoint a single factor that would influence the development of depression. This disorder is considered to be a complex problem, therefore it covers both biological, psychological, as well as social and cultural factors.

Some patients have certain genetic conditions that predispose them to develop depression. Many studies show that depression can be hereditary. If the disease occurred in parents or grandparents, there is a high probability that it will also occur in children. Hormonal disorders that affect the level of neurotransmitters in the brain, as well as co-occurring chronic diseases or addictions may also have an impact. Psychological factors are also important, among which the strong influence of family relationships and relationships with other people is emphasized, as well as the going through of stressful situations, such as the death of a loved one or an accident. Psychological conditions are inextricably linked with social and cultural factors, i.e. the network of contacts of a given person, the support of relatives, as well as the professional and material situation.

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Depression – symptoms that should raise you alertness

Experts distinguish three types of depression based on the severity of symptoms – mild, moderate and severe (with or without psychotic symptoms). Another division is based on the causes of depression and specifies endogenous (genetically determined) depression and exogenous depression (in other words, reactive, resulting from psychosocial factors).

The dominant symptom in people suffering from depression is low mood and a feeling of sadness which last almost all day. This is accompanied by a significant reduction in daily activities and difficulties in performing even the simplest duties. A sick person cannot motivate himself to get out of bed, go to work or prepare a meal. May struggle with sleep disturbances, including shallow sleep and insomnia, which keeps sleep from resting. This condition also affects activities that have so far been performed with pleasure and brought joy. These feelings significantly weaken or even completely disappear, which results in emotional indifference, or anhedonia. The sick person is accompanied by a feeling of nonsense and overwhelming emptiness, loss of faith in their own abilities, as well as problems with controlling their emotions. Once, it can be crying and extreme irritability that turn into impulsiveness and explosiveness. Depressed people tend to blame themselves excessively and most often unjustified for all their failures and decisions.



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