If you constantly think to yourself, ” I think I have depression “, odds are you may be right. It may take awhile for a person suffering from depression to realize they have all the signs and symptoms. Once they do, however, it’s a life changing experience.The outward signs of depression are much more noticeable to others. Many times, it’s only after someone questions you about your health, you begin to wonder yourself.
Depression carries with it some very distinct signs as well as others that are much less noticeable. Visible signs of depression include:
- dramatic weight loss or gain
- sudden change in appearance
- irritable, aggressive, extremely short tempered
- difficulty concentrating and staying on task
Less noticeable signs include:
- spending long amounts of time alone
- feelings of worthlessness and helplessness
- consuming excessive amounts of alcohol
- can’t sleep and if you do, fitful dreams and nightmares are common
I Think I Have Depression. What Do I Do Now?
If you feel that you are losing control and are having a hard time maintaining a positive attitude for even a short amount of time, seek help immediately. Untreated depression can possibly be prevented with the right types of treatment. Consult your doctor and get a physical. Find out what state of health you are in and then begin to look at your options.
After your doctor performs a complete physical examination. they will request a battery of blood tests to determine hormone and other chemical levels within the body and the brain. While they are waiting for the results, he or she may ask you to make an appointment with a counselor that specializes in depression and other mental illnesses.
They can determine if the negative thoughts and outlook are related to a possible chemical imbalance within the brain or if extenuating circumstances in your life are causing an unhealthy amount of stress. While the physician must help with the regulation of chemicals and hormones within the brain, the counselor can help you find ways to deal with the ever increasing amounts of stress that accompany your day to day routine. Another benefit from having a counselor help you work through your emotional state of mind, is you have someone to share your thoughts and considerations with. For individuals who do not get that opportunity, it can be a great stress reliever.
Counselors can uncover symptoms such as disinterest in favorite hobbies and activities, reckless behavior and thoughts of self-loathing. It is their job to help you learn about why you are experiencing those feelings and what the best way is to deal with them. Once the physical, blood work and counseling evaluation are completed, your doctor can begin to prepare a treatment plan to help you resolve any issues you may be having.
I think I have depression: Treatment Options
Depression is a disorder caused by fluctuating chemical and hormone levels within the brain. There are several ways to effectively regulate those chemicals and restore your positive mood, even if it is on a part time basis.
- Medications that alter the amount of serotonin and other chemical receptors in the brain help to elevate mood and improve a person’s outlook
- Moderate exercise releases endorphins that also help to boost a person’s mood and regulate serotonin levels
- Counseling is effective at helping teach a person tools to use when they begin to be overwhelmed with daily activities. A reputable counselor can also help you deal with possible anger issues that arise from feelings of frustration and helplessness.
- Changes in diet and lifestyle are extremely beneficial in dealing with patients suffering from depression. Eating bright colored fruits and vegetables provide the vitamins and minerals needed so the brain can function at its best.
If there is any possibility that you may be suffering from depression and are thinking ” I think I have depression” , contact a physician as soon as possible to get a treatment plan in place. Because several different things factor into a depression diagnosis, the sooner you begin treatment and take an active role in wanting to become healthy, the quicker you will begin to see results. As positive changes are made, both by medications and through the strengthening of your emotional state, you will begin to see an improvement in your outlook as well as your general, physical health. In time, if the treatment plan is working as it should be, medications may be able to be decreased and eventually done away with altogether and you will put an end to wondering ” I think I have depression”.