What is Depression?
The general public recognizes depression as feelings of sadness or disinterest. You and I both know that depression is more than just feeling down or unmotivated.
There are physical, emotional, and cognitive symptoms.
Depressive symptoms can include: disrupted sleeping patterns, fatigue, loss of energy, slow movement, change in appetite and weight, difficulty concentrating, indecisiveness, loss of interest, restlessness, irritability, anger, feelings of worthlessness, inappropriate guilt, isolation, withdrawal, sensitivity, suicidal ideation, brief psychotic episodes (ex: mild or vague hallucinations, delusions, feelings of paranoia). And prolonged feelings of numbness.
Everyone experiences depression differently. Some individuals may express symptoms that aren’t present in others. This is especially true for men and women.
Women and Depression
Depression is more than twice as prevalent in women than in men.
This is likely due to certain biological, hormonal, and social factors that are unique to women.
Approximately 12 million women in the U.S. experience clinical depression each year.
That is a LARGE number.
Chances are that you probably know a friend or family member who suffers with depression. Maybe you are struggling with depression.
Stress, negative body-image, as well as, a tendency to ruminate on negative thoughts and events are other factors that contribute to the reason women are more prone to depression than men.
Women also suffer two types of depression that are unique to their gender. Postpartum Depression and Premenstrual Dysphoric Disorder.
Postpartum Depression is depression suffered by a mother following childbirth. The combination of fatigue, hormonal changes, and psychological adjustments to motherhood can all attribute to this type of depression.
Premenstrual Dysphoric Disorder can be considered to be a severe form of PMS. The symptoms are debilitating to the point of interfering with daily activities and functioning. Women that suffer with this type of depression have trouble maintaining work, school, social life, and relationships because of the severity of symptoms.
If you are dealing with depression it is also likely that you are dealing with anxiety.
Anxiety and Depression
It can sound conflicting when one reports feeling down but also restless.
This is actually very common.
The two disorders have similar biological mechanisms in the brain. So they are more likely to show up together.
Depression and Anxiety also both have many overlapping symptoms (such as, lack of sleep, changes in appetite, difficulty concentrating, indecisiveness, isolation).
The combination of symptoms can be overwhelming and exhausting.
If you are reading through this page, chances are you or someone you know is struggling with symptoms of depression and/or anxiety.