Let’s Talk About Depression

Depression is a mood disorder that causes a persistent feeling of sadness and loss of interest. The condition is more common than some may think. It is curable but not always something one can “get rid of” quickly. For some, it may last a few weeks to a couple of months, and others may last more than two years. There are also chronic depression disorders that may be brought upon by triggers. Yes, depression can surely be avoidable, but that isn’t always the case in other circumstances. 

As humans, we are all unique in a very particular way. We tend to have different ways of viewing life; appearances and fashion attire, religious preferences, interests in things, taste in foods and drinks, music, etc. Something we all hold as humans are feelings. No matter what anyone says, we all have feelings. Because we are so unique, those feelings cause us to react to situations based on our moods differently. For sure, we’d love for everyone to respond to negative happenings in a lively manner, but let’s be realistic- that’s impossible.

As humans, “staying positive” about everything is expected, but how can we? How can one stay optimistic after losing a baby during birth? What about someone who lost their job with a family to provide for and no money saved? How about the children at school bullied by their peers? The spouses unhappy in their marriages but stay for their children? The couple having complications with pregnancy? Losing one of your favorite persons? Or even the homeless man who once had everything going well for himself, but he lost it all? And let’s not forget the single parents who struggle to make ends meet with no help or anyone to call on. Some of these scenarios may not trouble every person that ever encountered, but these are challenging circumstances for others. Sure, we can bypass some situations, and other times, not so much. 

The causes and symptoms of depression vary within each person experiencing it. As I named a few possible hardships above that may produce the illness, I’ll now explain some of the symptoms. Some of the most significant symptoms include; anxiety, increased or lack of sleep, loss of interest, lack of motivation, lack of concentration, hopelessness, irregular appetite, restlessness, irritability, stress, suicidal thoughts, mood swings, etc. That’s to name a few- imagine having to experience those symptoms all day for days, weeks, months, or years at a time. It makes people go insane, and some don’t quite understand that! It is a constant battle, and that is what the world needs to comprehend.

Depression can be so severe it begins to affect your life in terrifying ways. People start to struggle with keeping their relationships with family, friends, and associates healthy. Those individuals are probably unaware of mental health disorders. Performance at work declines significantly, sometimes causing one to lose their position or receive a pay cut. Not only that, if you’re apart of the customer service industry, your symptoms could cause negative interactions with consumers. Bad for business, I reckon. Some can go days at a time without getting out of bed or showering. Slacking to keep up your hygiene can become shameful, but it happens. When that does happen, people begin to lose their self-esteem. There are also those individuals who turn to alcohol and drugs to have a sense of healing. They don’t want to think about their troubles, and the temporary feeling of numbness is satisfying. 

 Everyone’s experience with depression is not the same nor as severe as others. Being able to “manage” your mental health is a skill in my eyes. I am personally someone who’s able to function with my depression to an extent. Most of the time, I tend to hide my symptoms to avoid worrying my family and close friends. Hiding them causes bottling in all of my troubles until the top bursts off. That is not ideal, but I’m working on that. I do not recommend hiding your symptoms to the point where you want to give up. One should not hide their symptoms but seek the proper treatment. You may never know if something can help you until you try. 

The feeling of not wanting your family to worry is understandable. Being aware of specific situations can cause our family members to become very judgmental. Seriously, why would one want to hear sarcastic comments when already down? If one feels as though they cannot communicate with their close family or friends, professional help is always a more suitable option. A therapist would be beneficial for all of your venting and coping needs. They will be there to help you get to the bottom of things interrupting your life. They will also introduce you to various types of coping skills. My therapist helps by knowing all of my favorite hobbies and interests and then challenging me to perform them daily. Although I’m not always able to partake in these activities due to my “down” mood, they give me a sense of temporary happiness when I do so. 

While seeing a therapist, you’re more than likely to be referred to a psychiatrist (vice versa). A psychiatrist will be there to assist with additional therapy and medication needs if your depression permits. Medications can include anti-depressants, mood stabilizers, sleep aids, etc. Everyone is not fond of medicines because they prefer to “self- heal,” which isn’t always the answer. It is a form of denial to an extent and causes a delay within actual healing. Treatment to get yourself “back on track” is nothing to be ashamed of and should be taken seriously. You may even learn a few new things about yourself during the process. For sure, you’ll know more about mental health disorders and could likely help teach others.

My job is to continue spreading the seriousness of mental health disorders and how to manage them. What works for me may not work for all, but it will help someone else in need somewhere. I’m confident about that, and I appreciate all of the feedback I’ve received from family, friends, associates, and strangers worldwide. Knowing that I’m able to give someone hope makes my heart smile. I wish the best to anyone experiencing or know someone who is suffering from depression. You are not alone; you have a purpose; you will make it through to the light at the end of the tunnel. 

Much love and never forget to “Live a Little” even during your most challenging moments in life. 

Photo by Felipe Cardoso on Pexels.com

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