Depression is more than just a low mood – it is an illness that impacts on both physical and mental health, which requires treatment, just like any other illness.
What is Depression?
Depression is a common mental illness, characterized by:
What are the Signs and Symptoms of Depression?
It is important to note that everyone can experience symptoms of depression from time to time and it may not necessarily mean that person has depression.
Depression can also affect different people in different ways, including their feelings, behavior, thoughts and physical health. The list of symptoms below is a guide only and does not provide a diagnosis. If you are concerned you (or someone you know) is experiencing symptoms of depression, please seek advice from a
trained health professional.
Possible Signs and Symptoms of Depression include:
Negative thoughts such as:
If symptoms don't go away after two weeks, or if they come back over and over again, it could be depression.
Symptoms of depression interfere with all areas of a person's life, including work and social relationships. People may feel tired all the time, loose their confidence and their enjoyment of life.
"You don't want to do anything… you just want to be left alone and you don't want to meet others… you don't want to leave your bed and you want to sleep all day… you don't have appetite at all… you don't want to eat…"
"… When you go out with people and laugh it won't be a true laugh… you stop enjoying people's company… you keep your social life because you have to and not you want to…"
"Talking itself is difficult when you're depressed… you feel it needs a lot of energy to speak to others… you don't enjoy sociality and going out with others…"
"Doing the most basic everyday tasks became very overwhelming and stressful…I felt tired all the time, my brain was tired and my body was tired for no reason…"
Types of Depression
A trained health professional can provide a diagnosis of Depression depending on the severity, duration and type of symptoms.
There are different types of depressive disorders and depression can be described as mild, moderate or severe; melancholic or psychotic, so it is helpful to be aware of the range of conditions and their specific symptoms.
Below are some common terms, which may be used by health professionals to describe different types of Depression:
Clinical Depression or
Major Depression or
Bipolar Affective Disorder
and Postpartum psychosis
(Mental Health in Women)