What is Depression?
Everyone at some point in their life struggles with sadness and feelings of melancholy, feeling this way is natural and happens when faced with a loss, death, loneliness or any other life struggle.
However, when feeling sad or unhappy leads to feelings of helplessness, worthlessness, and hopelessness that will not go away for days, weeks, months, or years, there is a problem. This is called depression and if left untreated it could impair your ability to live a normal life.
There is hope, clinical depression is treatable.
To be diagnosed with depression, the DSM-IV, which is a manual used to diagnose mental problem, states that five of the following symptoms must be present:
- Feelings of sadness throughout the day, intensified in the morning.
- Lack of energy and fatigue.
- Feelings of worthlessness and guilt.
- Problems concentrating.
- Sleeplessness or excessive sleeping.
- Diminished interest in normal activities or former hobbies.
- Recurring thoughts of death, dying, or suicide.
- Significant weight loss or gain within one month.