Signs and Symptoms of Depression

Posted Mar 18, 2014 | Posted in Diseases & Treatments, Health & Wellness

Depression SymptomsMajor depressive disorder is one of the most common mental disorders in the U.S., affecting 6.7% of the adult population. Depression is different for everyone and happens for many reasons. It’s important to understand why depression can develop, and what symptoms to look for. 

Signs and Symptoms of Depression

Symptoms vary from person to person, but the following are some general symptoms that can be a sign of depression:

  • Persistent sad, anxious, or “empty” feelings
  • Feelings of guilt, worthlessness, or helplessness
  • Irritability, restlessness
  • Loss of interest in activities or hobbies once pleasurable
  • Fatigue and decreased energy
  • Difficulty concentrating, remembering details, and making decisions
  • Insomnia, early-morning wakefulness, or excessive sleeping
  • Loss of interest in activities or hobbies once pleasurable
  • Overeating or appetite loss
  • Thoughts of suicide, suicide attempts
  • Aches or pains, headaches, cramps, or digestive problems that do not ease even with treatment

DepressionRisk Factors

There are many factors that increase the risk of depression, most commonly including bad habits, life changes or events, and of course a family history of depression. Here are some examples:


  • Abuse
  • Certain medication
  • Conflict
  • Death or loss
  • Genetics
  • Major events
  • Personal problems
  • Serious illness
  • Substance abuse

Recent studies have also found that the risk of being diagnosed with depression increases when too much or too little sleep is involved. When the body gets inappropriate amounts of sleep, some depression-related genes may become active. This true for both adults and adolescents. Teens are three times more likely to have symptoms of depression than their peers who get adequate amounts of sleep.

It is never too early to start thinking about your health, and the sooner the better. You can make an investment in your health by prioritizing sleep and creating healthy habits. If you feel that any of the factors listed above apply to you or a loved one, make an appointment to visit your local doctor. If you would like to know more about your sleep habits contact Johnston Health Sleep Services at (919)-570-9715.

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