As we face this pandemic and numerous stay at home orders, it is very normal to experience a variety of emotions. You may feel relaxed and content, and another moment you may feel anxious and alone. It is important, however, that we recognize that our emotions have become more than a natural reaction to a stressful time it might be considered depression which may require a counselor.
During these quarantine times it is very natural to feel sad, bored and lonely, however, forced social isolation in combination with other variables may be a pre-deposition to mood and personality disorders, along with cultural, family dynamics. These can increase one’s risk of experiencing a depressive episode.
There is a difference between sadness and depression and it’s critical to understand this difference between the signs of depression and general sadness that people might be experiencing at this time.
Signs of depression include persistent feelings of sadness: loss of interest in activities that were once enjoyable; sleep disturbance and hopelessness, reduced energy and motivation, appetite disturbance both eating too much and eating too little. Also thoughts of being a burden to loved ones or having thoughts of wanting to die.
Signs of depression include persistent feelings of sadness colon loss of interest in activities that were once enjoyable; sleep disturbance and hopelessness, reduced energy and motivation, appetite disturbance both eating too much and eating too little. Also thoughts of being a burden to loved ones or having thoughts of wanting to die. Sadness on the other hand may look similar to depression, but usually it does not last for days at a time. You may feel unhappy but you are still able to engage in activities you usually enjoy, such as watching TV, reading connecting with friends by phone or online, and exercising.
You can also maintain activities of daily living, including personal hygiene preparing and eating meals and taking medication. Distressing thoughts do not consume you.
If you have never experienced depression before, it is also important to recognize if your sadness seems to be getting better or worse over time. Accomplishing tasks might become more difficult. Motivation and energy may decrease, such that spending most of the day in bed becomes the norm.
You should begin tracking your mood, when you wake up and before you go to bed using a one through 10 scale, 10 being awesome and one… Sucks! Write down simple goals for the day and check the box when you complete these tasks. Most importantly reach out to a family member or friend and share and you were struggling. if you notice that things are staying the same or getting worse or have thoughts of suicide please seek professional help.
For those who have been diagnosed with depression, it is very important that you will pay attention to your activities of daily living and ask yourself it’s getting harder to take care of yourself and do things that you would normally do each day. Planning ahead and writing down triggers, coping skills and who you can reach out to is important.
Talk to your doctor if you or a loved one or experiencing excessive sadness, anxiety or worry for an extended period of time. Depression is very serious and it can be lethal.