What is Depression?
The mental health of every single person is something that is very important. Mental health is a broad term, which covers our social, emotional, and psychological well-being, and it affects how we interact with other people. Mental health is important at every single stage of our lives, from childhood to adulthood, and determines how we handle social situations, stress and make choices.
The most commonly recognized form of a mental illness is depression. Unfortunately, though, people seem to be less willing to acknowledge that suffering from depression is something that can seriously affect the way that we live our day to day lives, and how we interact with other people.
What Can Cause You to Feel Depressed?
Depression is a serious, although common, mood disorder that can cause severe symptoms that affect how someone feels, thinks, and handles daily activities. Sleep schedules can be changed when someone is depressed, how they eat and even their work ethic are also things that depression can affect.
To be diagnosed with depression, though, your symptoms must last for at least two weeks. It is also important to understand that there is more to being diagnosed with depression, as there are many forms of depression.
Kinds of Depression:
If you are diagnosed with what is known as seasonal depression, you will find that you become depressed, withdrawn from social situations, and experience weight gain during the winter months. This is likely linked to the fact that there is less natural sunlight during winter. This form of depression usually goes away when spring and summer return, but quickly finds its way back once the days start becoming shorter, and the weather colder.
There is also what is known as persistent depressive disorder, which is also referred to as dysthymia. This form of depression that lasts for at least two years. Someone who is diagnosed with this type of depression would find that they will have episodes of major depression. They will also experience times where they are less depressed, but their symptoms must last for at least two years for them to be diagnosed with persistent depressive disorder.
How to Help Your Mental Health:
Depression is only one aspect of mental health, but as I stated earlier, it is the most commonly known form. You can lead an otherwise “normal” life while being depressed. You can get up and go to work, take care of your children, and your friends and family can all still think that you and your mental state are not affected.
Taking care of your mental health is something that is vital to your overall health. There is no shame in recognizing that you might be in need of professional help. If you feel that your mental state is not where it should be, you should contact your doctor immediately.
Mental health professionals only want what is best for you, and they want you to be able to feel happy, interact well with others, and have ways to express your feelings in a healthy and safe place. Letting yourself feel ashamed of your mental health is not something that you should do, and know that you are not alone.