Depression is more than feeling unhappy or fed up for a few days. It is not the same as the normal feelings of sadness that people feel when they experience difficult events in their life. A person suffering from depression will experience intense emotions of anxiety, hopelessness, negativity and helplessness, and these feelings will stay with them. Depression prevents people from progressing normally with their lives and taking part in activities they normally enjoy. These are just some of the signs someone may be depressed:
- feeling low, sad, guilty, upset or numb, crying, feeling alone or angry
- losing interest or enjoyment in things
- sleep problems
- changes in weight, appetite and eating
- having negative or gloomy thoughts
- putting things off
- can’t be bothered to do everyday tasks.
Living with depression is difficult for those who suffer from it and for their family, friends and colleagues. It can be difficult to know if you are depressed and what you can do about it. Depression can happen suddenly as a result of physical illness, experiences dating back to childhood, unemployment, bereavement, family problems or other life-changing events. Taking action to make yourself feel more in control will have a positive effect, whether it's going to see your GP for treatment, joining a gym, going for daily walks or doing something that you are interested in or good at.