Some people say that depression feels like a black curtain of despair coming down over their lives. Many people feel like they have no energy and can't concentrate. Others feel irritable all the time for no apparent reason. The symptoms vary from person to person, but if you feel "down" for more than two weeks, and these feelings are interfering with your daily life, this is depression. Scheduling an appointment with a therapist can help at times like this.

When depression is strong it can feel like one is not present in their own body, often feeling a sense of grayness or being underwater. Some of the signs that accompany depression include:

  • Persistent sad, anxious, or "empty" mood
  • Feelings of hopelessness, pessimism
  • Feelings of guilt, worthlessness, helplessness
  • Loss of interest or pleasure in hobbies and activities that were once enjoyed, including sex
  • Decreased energy, fatigue, being "slowed down"
  • Difficulty concentrating, remembering, making decisions
  • Insomnia, early-morning awakening, or oversleeping
  • Appetite and/or weight loss or overeating and weight gain
  • Thoughts of death or suicide; suicide attempts
  • Restlessness, irritability

Depression can be triggered by many things including grief, loss, difficult relationships, divorce, financial problems, family expectations, or any stressful (unwelcome or even desired) changes in life patterns. Depression in adolescents can manifest in different ways than adults and may include acting out, anger, sleeping, poor school performance, and excitability.

Therapy can alleviate the feelings of exhaustion, worthlessness, helplessness, and hopelessness. Negative thoughts and feelings make some people feel like giving up. It is important to realize that these negative views are part of the depression and typically do not accurately reflect the actual circumstances.

If any of these descriptions feel like your life, scheduling an appointment with a therapist can assist you in learning how to obtain more satisfaction in your life. Working with a therapist can give you the tools to step back into your life with an understanding that depression does not have to control you.

Referral source - National Institute of Mental Health

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