Identifying Depression

Tips for Identifying Depression

Commonly hidden mood disorders can show up in unexpected ways which is why it helps to have some tips to identify depression. Some ways it manifests are not always obvious so it helps to have a way of identifying the issue.

Depression Checklist

A study from Manitoba compared screening tools and found having a reliable way to measure mental health issues can be a helpful diagnostic tool for doctors. Other measures are also used. Some of the features discovered to be associated with depression include:

  • Significant fluctuations in sleeping or appetite patterns
  • Extreme drops in interest or pleasurable activities
  • Feelings of helplessness, hopelessness or guilt
  • Low energy
  • Difficulty concentrating
  • Reduced motor control
  • Suicidal ideation

A diagnosis of major depressive disorder must include having an individual fulfill four of the above symptoms in addition to marked and prolonged sadness for at least two weeks.

Masking Illness

Strategies for spotting depression can be challenging but the illness may mask itself behind another behavioral health condition. Other behavioral health conditions depression may mask itself behind include:

  • Anxiety disorders
  • Substance use disorders
  • Eating disorders

Signs of co-occurring conditions can be challenging because symptoms of the disorder may present in a difficult manner. Screening through integrated measures can be utilized to view multiple disorders in context of one another and according to life issues.

Friends and family can help an individual with depressive disorder find support. It is difficult to find a way to offer help and support the person needs without the right help. Professionals can offer this support and to help engage the person and find a way to reach him or her for recovery.

The Villa provides help for individuals seeking support for mental health and addiction issues. If you are struggling or have a family member in need, call us to find out how we can help you get to a better place in recovery.