We have all experienced sadness at some point in our lives. Whether a relationship ended or we were faced with a difficult situation at work or home, we’ve felt sad. It is a normal human emotion that we will continue to experience at different times throughout our lives. The good news is, the feeling of sadness will go away. Once the problem has resolved, or the hurt that we have experience has faded, our sadness fades too.
Could I be depressed?
What about the all-encompassing sadness? The feeling that hurts from the depths of your stomach and moves up to the bottom of your throat. You stop going out and talking to friends that you used to see on a regular basis. You find yourself laying down on the couch as soon as you get home at night and sleeping for hours on end. You know you are slipping at work because you simply do not care anymore. You don’t think about eating and find yourself wondering if anyone would even notice if you weren’t around. This is an example of someone who is suffering from depression.
Depression is a mood disorder that affects all aspects of life. It makes everything less enjoyable, less important, and puts a strain on the body. It may cause you to feel impatient and quick to anger as well. To be diagnosed, you must have at least 5 of the following symptoms continually for 2 weeks.
- Feeling depressed throughout the day.
- Lack of interest in activities you once enjoyed.
- Sleeping too much or not enough.
- Appetite changes paired with weight loss or weight gain.
- Restlessness, irritability, or agitation.
- Extreme fatigue.
- Feelings of guilt or excessive worthlessness on most days.
- Problems with concentrating or making decisions.
- Suicidal thoughts or actions.
Depression is a serious condition that requires treatment to manage. Sometimes we disregard a serious illness or even overthink a normal emotion because are confused when it comes to being sad versus being depressed. If you or someone you love has been diagnosed with depression and feel like you are out of options, a research study may be for you. Biobehavioral Research of Austin is currently seeking participants for several current and upcoming studies. Participants are evaluated by medical professionals and receive compensation for time and travel expense.