Symptoms of Major Depression

Depression is a concept that has been far too freely applied and cheapened through overuse. If someone who is normally cheerful seems to be having a bad day, his friends will refer to him as “depressed.” Major depression, however, is a serious condition that does not arrive and depart with changing circumstances. Learning how to recognize it will enable the friends and family of a sufferer from true depression to be more understanding, as well as bringing hope of recovery.

How to Recognize Depression

The following are some signs of depression that goes deeper than a transient bad mood:

  • Inexplicable feelings of general unhappiness
  • Lack of interest in pleasurable activities or in the company of family and friends
  • Loss of ambition or hope for the future
  • Short temper
  • Insomnia and/or oversleep, sometimes in cycles
  • Drastic changes in food consumption
  • Restlessness
  • Difficulty forming thoughts into coherent communication
  • Sense of futility and personal worthlessness
  • Persistent tiredness
  • Unreasonable guilt
  • Frequent meditations on death and suicide
  • Drug and alcohol abuse

It is the last item on this list that is truly paradoxical. The depression victim may feel that his life is meaningless and his brain seeks any escape from its darkness, often through the self-medication of substance abuse.

Depression and Addiction

Suffering from depression makes many individuals more likely to become addicted to drugs or alcohol. Such substance abuse; however, conversely increases one’s proclivity toward depression and mental illness. This vicious cycle makes depression virtually impossible to escape without professional help. Even antidepressant medications sometimes have the adverse side effect of strengthening the patient’s suicidal impulses. For co-occurring disorders such as depression and substance abuse, Dual Diagnosis and integrated treatment at a recovery center are a patient’s best hope of lasting recovery.

Where to Find Recovery from Depression

If you or your loved one suffers from depression, whether or not it is compounded by substance abuse, please call us today. Our 24-hour helpline is toll free, allowing you to find answers as soon as you need them. We can recommend treatment facilities and help you find hope of regaining a healthy life.