Most people occasionally feel sad or down from time to time. Knowing the signs of depression is important so that you can get the help that you need. When your feelings are overwhelming, ongoing, and cause you to suffer physical and emotional symptoms, they can prevent you from enjoying your life. Untreated depression can worsen and last for months or years, causing pain and increasing the potential for suicide. When you are experiencing overwhelming feelings of depression, getting depression counselling can help. Recognizing the signs of depression is the first step to getting better.

What are the symptoms of depression?

There are numerous symptoms of depression, including the following:

  • Difficulty concentrating or making decisions
  • Memory problems
  • Feelings of worthlessness and guilt
  • Fatigue
  • Feeling pessimistic and hopeless
  • Irritability
  • Sleep problems
  • Restlessness
  • Lack of interest in activities you once enjoyed
  • Loss of appetite or overeating
  • Chronic aches and pains
  • Persistent sadness
  • Digestive problems
  • Suicidal ideations or attempts

How is depression diagnosed?

Doctors and therapists ask people questions about their symptoms and the severity of them. You might also be asked how long the symptoms have lasted and if you have a history of depression in your family or of alcohol or drug abuse. You may be asked to complete a clinical questionnaire about depression. The information that you provide will be used to determine whether your symptoms amount to clinical depression.

How is depression treated?

Depression may be treated with antidepressants combined with depression counselling. Your doctor may refer you to a psychologist at South Orange County Counseling. A combination of antidepressants and therapy is an effective way to treat depression. With help, your symptoms can improve so that you can enjoy your life again.

Warning signs of suicide risk

Suicide is a serious risk of depression. If you experience suicidal thoughts, you need to seek immediate help. Some warning signs that a loved one may be experiencing suicidal thoughts include the following:

  • Sudden change from deep, ongoing sadness to appearing overly calm
  • Constantly talking about death
  • Depression that grows worse
  • Engaging in very risky behaviors
  • Talking about feeling worthless or hopeless
  • Putting his or her affairs in order
  • Contacting all of his or her close friends
  • Making comments about suicide

If you experience these types of warning signs, you should immediately call a suicide hotline or mental health professional for help.

When to seek help for depression

If you have been experiencing ongoing depression that is interfering with your work and relationships, talking to a professional can help. Meeting with a psychologist at South Orange County Counseling can help to keep your symptoms from worsening.

You should understand that feeling sad doesn’t always mean that you are depressed. Clinical depression involves more than a change in your mood. It also involves changes in your energy level, sleep patterns, motivation, and ability to concentrate. If you are experiencing both physical and/pr emotional symptoms that are overwhelming, contact South Orange County Counseling today by calling  949.370.4246.