- Feel miserable, sad and tearful.
- Feel exhausted a lot of the time with no energy .
- Feel as if even the smallest tasks are sometimes impossible.
- Seldom enjoy the things that you used to enjoy-you may be off sex or food or may ‘comfort eat’ to excess.
- Feel very anxious sometimes.
- Don’t want to see people or are scared to be left alone. Social activity may feel hard or possible.
- Can see no future. There is a loss of hope. You feel all you’ve ever done is make mistakes and that’s all that you ever will do.
- Find it difficult to think clearly.
- Feel like a failure and/or feel guilty a lot of the time.
- Feel a burden to others.
- Sometimes feel that life isn’t worth living.
- Feel irritable or angry more than usual.
- Feel you have no confidence.
- Spend a lot of time thinking about what has gone wrong, what will go wrong or what is wrong about yourself as a person. You may also feel guilty sometimes about being critical of others (or even thinking critically about them).
- Feel that life is unfair.
- Have difficulty sleeping or wake up very early in the morning and can’t sleep again. You seem to dream all night long and sometimes have disturbing dreams.
- Feel that life has/is ‘passing you by.’
- Have physical aches and pains which appear to have no physical cause, such as back pain.
Sadness is a small part of depression, but is a painful emotion nonetheless and can be difficult to understand. The difference between sadness and depression is that the latter involves several psychological and physical symptoms and it tends to persist a long time. While sadness is common and fleeting, depression is debilitating and disrupts your life, relationships, self-confidence and your thoughts about the future. It’s a medical illness, not a sign a weakness – importantly, it’s treatable.
Types of depression
- Major depressive disorder (major depression)
- Bipolar disorder (manic depression)
- Postpartum depression (postnatal depression)
- Seasonal affective disorder (SAD)
- Persistent depressive disorder
- Premenstrual dysphoric disorder (PMDD)
- Psychotic depression
- Atypical depression
Symptoms of depression
- Difficulty concentrating, remembering details and making decisions
- Feelings of guilt, worthlessness or helplessness
- Ruminative thinking
- Feelings of hopelessness or pessimism
- Insomnia, early-morning wakefulness, or excessive sleeping
- Irritability, restlessness
- Loss of interest in activities or hobbies once pleasurable (incl. sex)
- Overeating or appetite loss
- Persistent aches or pains, headaches, cramps or digestive problems that don’t ease even with treatment
- Persistent sad, anxious or ’empty’ feelings
- Thoughts of suicide, suicide attempts
- Fatigue and decreased energy