Surprising Signs of Depression

Most everyone knows depression is usually indicated by extended sadness. However, each individual copes with their depression differently, making the illness hard to identify for some people. If you have experienced a behavioral change lately, here are signs it may be attributed to depression.

Drastic Increase in Exercise

If you have taken to exercising for several hours a day, or multiple times a day, when you didn’t before, this may indicate depression. Your body may be craving endorphins due to extended sadness. Clearly, exercising is a great habit—but a sudden, almost compulsive desire to hit the gym may be a warning flag.

Change in Eating Habits

Any major difference in eating habits may indicate depression. A depressed individual may pick at food when he or she usually has a healthy appetite—or, on the other hand, binge eat. Depression may even lead to eating disorders.

Thrill-seeking

Those who are fighting away depression often engage in thrill-seeking behavior, including an increase in sexual activity. Likewise, they may gamble or make drastic life choices, such as quitting a job or getting a tattoo.

Aggressiveness

Those entering depression may be more likely to start fights. Minor conflicts could be an excuse for them to yell and discharge feelings of anger and sadness.

Detachment/Lack of Emotion

Individuals may display a marked lack of interest. They may seem “flat”, or display less emotion. Depressed people may avoid hobbies and people they love, isolating themselves. They may not show any signs of sadness—or any other emotion.

Lack of Focus

If you or a loved one are constantly daydreaming—to the point where daily activities seem nearly impossible due to an inability to focus—this may indicate depression.

These hints are not a clinical diagnosis. If you or someone you know is experiencing several of these signs, it may be wise to seek psychiatric assistance. Only a psychiatrist or a doctor can prescribe medication, and serotonin re-uptake inhibitors (SSRIs) such as Prozac have been known to assist depressed people with their disease. However, there are instances where a person should not take SSRIs due to certain complications that may arise. For example, women who take Prozac during pregnancy may risk birth defects in their developing child. Additionally, SSRIs are not meant to be a cure on their own; they work best when coupled with therapy.

Read More