We all likely go through periods in our lives where we feel unhappy or down. Maybe you’re going through a breakup, had a bad fight with a family member, or had a bad week at work. These bouts of unhappiness are typically related to an external event or everyday life and don’t last forever. Depression, however, is different and much more complicated. Depression is a common but serious mood disorder that causes persistent feelings of sadness and loss of interest that can affect the way you think and behave and ultimately how you show up in the world. While common, depression is the leading cause of disability in the world affecting roughly 5% of adults.
While only a licensed medical professional can diagnose you with depression, there may be some early signs to look for to determine if it may be time to seek help from a professional and put you on the road to healing and recovery. Here are some early signs of depression to look for.
Feelings of Hopelessness
Hopelessness is one of the most common symptoms of depression. Depression can affect how you feel about life in general resulting in a hopeless outlook on almost every aspect of your life. You may experience feelings of worthlessness, self-loathing, or even guilt. You may feel stuck and the inability to change anything for the better.
Loss of Interest
Another common sign you may be experiencing depression is the loss of interest in things you once enjoyed. You may withdraw from friends and family and no longer enjoy hobbies or activities you once loved. Many people experiencing depression may also experience a decreased libido and find a loss of interest in sex as well.
Fatigue and Sleep Issues
While fatigue and sleep issues can be a symptom of many conditions, it can also be a sign of depression. Extreme fatigue that comes with depression can be debilitating, making it difficult to get out of bed in the morning or carry out daily tasks. Some people may also experience insomnia, where they have difficulty sleeping at all.
Changes in Weight and Appetite
Changes in weight and appetite are other signs that could point to depression. However, these changes may be different for different people. Some individuals may find they eat more and gain weight when a depressive episode comes on while others may completely lose their appetite together, losing a lot of weight. These changes in weight may also affect your health insurance costs.
You may find it difficult to control your emotions, feeling angry one moment and incredibly sad the next. While it may be completely normal for people to experience changes in their mood from time to time, or if they’re experiencing a difficult time in their life, extreme mood swings that affect your daily life or those lasting for extended periods of time could point to something more serious like hormonal issues, substance misuse, or mental health conditions like depression.
Thoughts of Self Harm
The most dangerous side effect of depression is suicide. However, people who choose to end their life usually have thoughts of hurting themselves beforehand. That’s why it’s so important to be aware of the warning signs and get the mental health support you need.
If you or a loved one are having thoughts of hurting themselves or others, it’s vital to seek help right away. The 988 Suicide & Crisis Lifeline provides free and confidential support 24 hours a day, 7 days a week.
In the realm of seeking support and guidance in today’s digital era, turning to online life coaches has emerged as a vital component in the journey toward healing and dealing with depression. Unlike traditional therapists, who often rely on prescribing medications with potential adverse effects that may worsen symptoms, life coaches provide an alternative avenue. They offer personalized guidance and support without medication, allowing individuals to explore their mental health and well-being. With their expertise, online life coaches empower clients to navigate challenges, develop resilience, and unlock their full potential. By harnessing the power of digital platforms, these life coaches provide a convenient and accessible means to embark on a transformative journey toward personal growth and fulfillment.