The National Institute of Mental Health reports that more than 8 percent of Americans had a depressive episode in 2020. That means clinical depression, or major depressive disorder (MDD), is more prevalent than most people realize, and this mental health condition can be both life-altering and life-threatening.
Let’s talk about the symptoms of MDD and where you can go in Richmond, VA,for effective mental health care.
What is Major Depressive Disorder?
MDD impacts children, teens, adults, and seniors from all walks of life. Brain-based and sometimes triggered by life circumstances, depression causes numerous issues for the people who have it and those who love it.
Fortunately, major depressive disorder is treatable with medication, cognitive behavior therapy, professional and pastoral counseling, and more. While no single therapeutic approach works for everyone, there is hope. Recognizing the symptoms and getting to a mental health provider are the key to managing symptoms, improving function, and returning to a feeling of well-being.
Five Major Depressive Disorder Symptoms You Should Know
While everyone is different, commonalities do exist among depression patients and their symptoms. Here are five symptoms of MDD that you or a loved one can recognize when they appear consistently for two weeks or more.
1# A Lack of Interest in Usual Activities.
The enthusiasm for and interest in work, school, sports, hobbies, and more may wane when depression sets in. Grades may slump, work performance may suffer, and recreational activities seem boring or even intolerable.
2# The Depressed Person Has Little Energy.
He or she may feel fatigued, tired, and want to sleep all the time. However, depression can disturb the sleep cycle with insomnia or sleeping too much. Plus, physical labor or mental tasks just seem too difficult.
3# Feelings of Sadness and Hopelessness Dominate.
Depression makes people feel extremely melancholy. They wonder what’s the use oflife and that there is no solution or hope for their situations. These feelings may escalate to contemplating or trying self-harm or suicide.
4# Moods Swing from One Extreme to Another.
A depressed person may feel happy and hopeful one day and sad, angry, and anxious the next. Energy accompanies the ups, and slow thinking and movements accompany the downs. Some people even experience physical pain, such as headaches or muscular aches.
5# Appetite and Weight Change.
Depression causes people to eat too much (binge eating for comfort) or too little. Along with the appetite, changes come as weight gain or loss, which is noticeable to people at work or at home.
Mental Health Care in Richmond, VA
If some or all of these symptoms sound all too familiar, please speak to your PCP to explore if there is a physical cause for your depressed mood. However, if major depressive disorder seems more likely, contact Epic Health Partners to discuss your symptoms and treatment options.
Our providers understand the frustration of depression, and they deliver customized treatment plans which really work. Learn more by calling us for a confidential consultation: (434) 835-4601, or request a visit online.
Please don’t wait. You can get the MDD treatment you deserve. We are located in Martinsville, Richmond, and Danville, VA.
Also, if you have thoughts of self-harm, please call 911 right away, or contact the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline for help. Call (800) 273-TALK (8255), or text HOME to 741-741.