12 Things About Depression Nobody Tells You About

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Every instance of depression that is shown on TV or the movies has the depressed person lazing around in bed, unable to remove themselves from their cocoon of blankets, and always secluded in complete darkness with their curtains drawn.  

But in reality, depression can be so much more complicated than that.  

In truth, many people suffering from this illness can hold down jobs and participate in life on a regular basis.  Functional depression may look different than the traditional "taken to your bed" depression, but both are very real and have a myriad of symptoms that may seem unrelated, but are actually caused from the depression itself.  

Here are 12 issues that are caused by depression that you may or may have heard about:

  • 1.  Loss of appetite (or an increase).

    Any loss of appetite should be paid attention to and examined as a sign of something larger going on.  But if you're experiencing any of the below symptoms with your lack of appetite, it may the beginning of a depressive episode.  The same goes for craving specific kinds of food and overeating, like high carb snacks.  One blogger talks about how craving high carb snacks is a precursor to a downward spiral into a depressive phase.

  • 2. You aren't always stuck in bed.

    So many people who have functional depression can hold down full time jobs and participate in life regularly (like attending family events, work events, going out with friends, cooking meals regularly, etc.).  Depression, like anxiety, is a spectrum, and not all clinically depressed people are stuck home in bed (though some still are).
  • 3. You may not even know you're depressed.

    Depression can manifest in so many different ways that you may not even realize what's going on.  Depression doesn't always manifest as sadness, but usually there's an underlying sadness that maybe you're not recognizing, as your other symptoms are masking it.  So if you've felt off for awhile, maybe analyze what's at the root of what's going on (perhaps with your therapist or doctor) and see if depression is what's causing you to feel bad.

  • 4. You're always irritable.

    This is a biggie.  Constant irritation is a HUGE sign of depression (and anxiety).  My mother had this and eventually got on anti-depressants and eventually, her depression got better.  But if you're always on edge and have normal blood sugar (check your blood sugar, as this is a sign of both high and low blood sugar), then possibly depression is the culprit.  Talk to your doctor to see what they can do to help you.

  • 5. You are always achy or in pain.

    So many, many medical issues can be at fault for this.  Sjogrens' Syndrome, hypothyroidism, fibromyalgia, low water intake, and so many more.  But depression also makes this list because the mechanisms for pain are being repressed causing pain to be magnified which creates false discomfort.

  • 6. You suffer from CRS (can't remember shit).

    Short term memory can be affected during a bout of depression.  Lack of focus can manifest as not being able to remember details, not being able to concentrate, and comprehension difficulties. 
  • 7. You are more clumsy than usual.

    A foggy brain, mixed with being more clumsy is a possible sign of depression.  Bumping into things, being careless and knocking things over, etc.  All of these issues can go hand in hand with #6's lack of focus.  I am like this normally, so I wouldn't know if it was due to depression or not 😉

  • 8. You are on Facebook all day (or binge watching Netflix).

     Doing anything in excess (shopping, gambling, eating, exercising, etc.) is always a big issue with depression.  This is because they are trying to fill a void that refuses to be filled.  The more they participate in these activities, the emptier they feel, so they keep trying to fill it with more and more.  It's a vicious cycle of addiction and self-medication fueled by depression.

  • 9. You are more anxious over simple choices.
    Anxiety is inextricably linked to depression, as well as OCD-like choice-anxiety.  If you find yourself hemming and hawing over simple decisions (like what shirt to wear or something as simple as which brush to use) when you normally don't, you may be suffering from depression.  OCD (a type of anxiety) causes it's sufferers to feel as though something bad will happen if they don't choose to perform a particular task (or if they choose a particular task).  There are many facets of OCD, but choice anxiety is a biggie and can be related to depression because

  • 10. Self-care is non-existent.

    Sometimes even the smallest of tasks become insurmountable issues when depression is involved.  Something as simple as brushing your teeth become  as complicated as climbing a mountain.  When your self-care starts to take a backseat in your daily routine, it's time to question if depression is to blame.

  • 11. You need more alcohol to sleep (or to cope, etc.).

    Like #8, addiction can be at the forefront of any depressive episode.  So if you're noticing that your nightly beer or wine becomes 3 or 4 or more, you may want to call your doctor and let them know what's going on.  It's best to catch yourself before small addictive behavior becomes a full-blown addiction or a relapse.

  • 12. Everything that was fun, is now boring.

    This one is actually a very common issue that people know about with depression.  But it bears repeating, as losing interest in things you once loved is one of the biggest signs of depression there is.  It's okay to lose interest in something as long as there are other things still interest you, but when you start losing interest in everything is when there's an issue.  


Journaling Prompts


When you are having a depressive episode, try these prompts:


  • What level is my mental health right now, 1-10?  Why?
  • Top 10 things that can make feel better no matter what:
  • 5 things I am grateful for right now:
  • If depression and anxiety weren't an issue ever again, what would I do right now?  Tomorrow?  Next month?  A year?  5 years?
  • What would I say to a particular someone if I could say anything without any repercussion? 
  • What do I want others to know about me that they don't already know?
  • What are my best traits?
  • What was the nicest thing anyone has ever done for you?
  • What is one thing I've always wanted to do?  How can I take steps to doing it? (break it down into small, manageable steps)






Depression is a very serious illness and should never be taken lightly.  It can range from situational depression, SAD (seasonal affective disorder), functional depression, depression that stems from anxiety (and vice versa), major depressive disorder, bipolar depression, and so much more.  No matter what it comes from, you should always talk to a trusted healthcare professional that understands you and your situation in life.  Any thoughts of suicide should be considered an emergency.   I lost a dear friend who suffered from major depressive disorder a few years ago.  She came to me for help, so I picked her up and took her to an anxiety meeting, and she went home.  Two weeks later, she took her own life.  Depression isn't something to mess around with, and if you feel suicidal, even just a little, call this number (the Suicide Prevention Hotline in the US).  Write it down and carry it with you:


1-800-273-8255


Be aware of the symptoms of depression and talk you your doctor if you suspect this is what's going on in your life.  And know, you're not alone (even though you may feel quite the opposite).

Here are some apps that help with anxiety and depression:


https://adaa.org/finding-help/mobile-apps#

http://bigthink.com/21st-century-spirituality/six-apps-that-combat-depression-and-anxiety

https://www.realsimple.com/health/mind-mood/apps-for-depression-and-anxiety

https://www.care2.com/greenliving/10-mental-health-apps-for-depression-and-anxiety.html

https://www.huffingtonpost.com/entry/smartphone-apps-depression_us_59c920e1e4b0cdc773333da7


If you need to find a therapist, try out this link:

https://www.psychologytoday.com/us/therapists



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