If you have signs of depression, seek treatment.

Depression is more than just having a bad day. It’s a constant feeling of sadness or anger, inability to concentrate, and lack of interest in anything. Unlike diabetes, a blood test may not be able to detect depression, but it is a medical illness, just the same. It should be diagnosed and treated by a health professional. Over 80 percent of people with depression can be treated with success. Treatment includes medication, counseling, and self-care measures.


The exact cause of depression is not known. Most likely, it is caused and triggered by a combination of factors, such as:

• Brain chemicals are not in balance.
• Having a family history of the illness
• Stressful life events, such as the death of a loved one, divorce, or job loss
• Physical or mental abuse or neglect
• Alcohol or drug abuse
• Medical conditions, such as cancer or chronic pain
• A side effect or withdrawal of some medications, such as steroids
• Sleeping problems
• Hormone changes, such as after having a baby or with menopause

Signs & Symptoms:

• Feeling hopeless, helpless, worthless, guilty, or angry
• Fatigue. Loss of interest in life.
• Having a hard time concentrating or making decisions
• Feeling worried or anxious
• Changes in eating and sleeping habits
• Headaches, stomachaches or other aches and pains
• Thoughts of suicide or death

To a depressed person, there is no light at the end of the tunnel.

Action Step:

Contact your doctor if you have had a lot less interest or pleasure in almost all activities most of the day, nearly every day, for at least two weeks.

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