Know when to get help
The pressures and stress of the pandemic combined with everyday life stressors, getting too little sleep, or suffering a loss or disappointment can all affect your moods and emotional health. Small or large setbacks can feel like the end of the world. If your feelings of sadness, irritability, or hopelessness don’t go away, it could be depression.
Depression is a condition that can be treated, usually with therapy and/or medications. The earlier you get help, the better.
Watch for these signs
The difference between depression and feeling down is how severe the symptoms are and how long they last.
Ask yourself these questions:
• Do you often or usually feel sad, anxious or “empty?”
• Do you sleep too little or too much?
• Has your appetite shrunk, and have you lost weight? Or do you have a bigger appetite, and have you gained weight?
• Have you lost interest in activities you once enjoyed?
• Are you restless or irritable?
• Do you have persistent headaches, chronic pain or constipation that don’t respond to treatment?
• Do you have difficulty concentrating, remembering things, or making decisions?
• Do you often feel tired or lack energy?
• Do you feel guilty, hopeless or worthless?
Don’t wait to get help
If you have any of these signs for longer than two weeks or if they are interfering with your daily life, talk to a licensed counselor or your healthcare practitioner. Remember, depression can often be helped by medication, therapy or both.