Although depression may occur only once during your life, people typically have multiple episodes. During these episodes, symptoms occur most of the day almost every day and include:
- Feelings of sadness, tearfulness, emptiness or hopelessness
- Angry outbursts, irritability or frustration, even over small matters
- Loss of interest or pleasure in most or all normal activities, such as sex, hobbies or sports
- Sleep disturbances, including insomnia or sleeping too much
- Tiredness and lack of energy, so even small tasks take extra effort
- Reduced appetite and weight loss or increased cravings for food and weight gain
- Anxiety, agitation or restlessness
- Slowed thinking, malaise, speaking or body movements
- Feelings of worthlessness or guilt, fixating on past failures or self-blame
- Trouble thinking, concentrating, making decisions and remembering things
- Frequent or recurrent thoughts of death, suicidal thoughts, suicide attempts or suicide
- Unexplained physical problems, such as back pain or headaches
For many people with depression, symptoms usually are severe enough to cause noticeable problems in day-to-day activities, such as work, school, social activities, or relationships with others. Some people may feel generally miserable or unhappy without really knowing why.
Depression symptoms in children and teens
Common signs and symptoms of depression in children and teenagers are like those of adults, but there can be some differences.
In younger children, symptoms of depression may include sadness, irritability, clinginess, worry, aches and pains, refusing to go to school, or being over or underweight.
In teens, symptoms may include sadness, irritability, feeling negative and worthless, anger, poor performance or poor attendance at school, feeling misunderstood and extremely sensitive, using recreational drugs or alcohol, eating or sleeping too much, self-harm, loss of interest in normal activities, and avoidance of social interaction.
Post Partum Depression
Having a baby is a wonderful miracle. This miraculous event can come with many challenges, including challenges and changes within the mother’s body and mind. Sometimes those challenges and changes are overwhelming and paralyzing. You might feel unconnected to your baby, as if you are not the baby’s mother, or you might not love or care for the baby. These feelings can be mild to severe. If you are feeling this way you are not alone, and there is help available. Postpartum depression is a serious mental illness that involves the brain and affects your behavior and physical health. Mothers can also experience anxiety disorders during or after pregnancy. Alabama Psychiatry wants to support you and help you through this difficult time.
Depression symptoms in older adults
Depression is not a normal part of growing older, and it should never be taken lightly. Unfortunately, depression often goes undiagnosed and untreated in older adults, and they may feel reluctant to seek help. Symptoms of depression may be different or less obvious in older adults, such as:
- Memory difficulties or personality changes
- Physical aches or pain
- Fatigue, loss of appetite, sleep problems or loss of interest in sex — not caused by a medical condition or medication
- Often wanting to stay at home, rather than going out to socialize or doing new things
- Suicidal thinking or feelings, especially in older men