Life events can bring you down once in a while – whether it’s the end of a relationship, loss of a job, or a sudden move. But if your feelings of sadness persist and become overwhelming, causing physical symptoms that last for a long time, you may be suffering from depression.
Exactly how many people suffer from depression is hard to determine since not everyone seeks treatment. But, the Anxiety and Depression Association of American estimates more than 19 million people in the U.S. have some form of depression, and up to 40 million people experience anxiety with or without depression.
If you’re among this population, seek help. At South Rural Plains Health, we can help you manage depression and anxiety. Gone untreated, depression can get worse, go on for longer than necessary, interfere with your job and social relationships, and possibly lead to self harm.
How do I know I’m suffering from depression?
Recognize the symptoms of depression in yourself – or a loved one. It’s estimated that half of the people who have depression never get it diagnosed or treated. Depression can affect anyone, regardless of age and social status.
You may have trouble concentrating and remembering details. Fatigue and sleep disturbances, including insomnia or sleeping too much, are other signs. You may have feelings of guilt, helplessness, and worthlessness and loss of interest in activities you once found pleasurable – including sex. You may feel pessimistic or hopeless as well as anxious or empty. Your appetite may change – you eat too much or too little.
Why seek care for depression?
Depression is a serious condition. It can drain your motivation and optimism. You may have physical ills as a result and find depression interferes with your ability to work, go to school, and connect with friends and family. You can’t just get over it by changing your attitude.
Trying to put on a “brave” face isn’t constructive when you’re suffering from depression. Pretending you don’t have a problem doesn’t make your feelings go away.
If you have a loved one who seems to be suffering from depression, encourage them to seek help. You can’t fix them. They benefit most from professional help from a team like that at South Rural Plains Health.
How we evaluate depression
At South Rural Plains Health, we talk to you if you suspect depression. There’s no “official” test to measure your degree of depression. We’ll want to know when you started feeling as you do as well as how severe the feelings are and how long they’ve lasted.
We’ll also do a health review to find out if you have a history of depression or other mental conditions that run in your family or if you have past (or present) issue with drug or alcohol use.
Coming to our office may feel less daunting then seeing a mental health professional right away. We can also rule out any possible medical causes of your depression. And, if necessary, we can refer you to a professional therapist.
If you or a loved one is suffering the signs of depression, get help. It’s completely normal and healthy to need assistance sometimes, and we at South Rural Plains Health are ready to help.