No matter what your situation is, it’s important to know that help is available, and it’s okay to reach out. If you or someone you know is struggling with depression, visit findyourwords.org, where you can take a depression self-assessment test and learn about what resources are available.
Depression doesn’t always look like depression, so it can be difficult to recognize. Many people struggle for years before they reach out for help. Others never get help at all. But we can change that by creating a culture of acceptance and support.
Anyone can be affected by depression—it doesn’t matter what your age, culture, lifestyle, or family history is. Several factors, such as biology, environment, and challenging life events, can impact mental health. There’s no single cause, and it isn’t anyone’s fault.
Depression can change the way people think, feel, and behave. Everyone’s experience is different. But many people describe feeling deeply unhappy over a long period of time, without knowing why. It’s not always easy to recognize depression in yourself or someone else, but there are common symptoms to look for:
- Feeling sad, tearful, hopeless, guilty, anxious, or irritable
- Changes in appetite and/or weight
- Sleeping too much or too little
- Fatigue and low energy
- Problems concentrating, focusing, making decisions, or remembering
- Loss of pleasure in activities you usually enjoy
- Feeling life isn’t worth living, or having thoughts of death or suicide
For some people, practicing self-care through things like meditation and exercise can help ease symptoms of depression. Others may need professional support, which can include counseling, medication, or a combination of both.