Everyone feels down or blue from time to time. If you have experienced several of the following symptoms for at least two weeks, you might be experiencing clinical depression.
- Depressed mood. This may be expressed as irritability or anger, especially in children or men.
- Feelings of hopelessness
- Feelings of guilt or worthlessness
- Restlessness or agitation
- Loss of interest in hobbies or activities, including sex
- Fatigue or decreased energy
- Difficulty concentrating, problems with memory, problems making decisions
- Sleep problems or excessive sleep
- Changes in appetite
- Thoughts of death and/or suicide
- Persistent aches or pains, headaches, cramps or digestive problems that do not ease even with treatment
The two most common and effective treatments for depression are medications and psychotherapy. A combination also works well.