Did you know that May is Mental Health Awareness Month? It’s true! And it’s an excellent time to shed light on this critical topic because it uniquely affects everyone. You see, in a good year— 1 in 5 of us will struggle with our mental health. Really, it impacts each of us because if you’re not afflicted personally, chances are someone close to you is.
In order to bust stigma and get the conversation going, we’re sharing statistics, educational pieces, and coping tips all month across our various platforms. And this week? It’s all about depression!
Have you ever felt blue? If so, you’re not alone! According to the Center for Disease Control and Prevention, a whopping 40% of Americans are experiencing symptoms of depression right now. And truthfully? It’s not all that surprising, given the events that have transpired over the past year.
Watch the video below for a powerful illustration of what it’s like to live with depression.
So, what is depression? It’s complex. Everything from nerve cell connections to the brain’s physical anatomy plays a hand in the disorder.
That said, the Mayo Clinic characterizes an episode of depression by the following symptoms, occurring on most days for a prolonged period:
- Feelings of sadness, tearfulness, emptiness, or hopelessness
- Angry outbursts, irritability or frustration, even over small matters
- Loss of interest in most or all normal activities, such as sex, hobbies, or sports
- Sleep disturbances, including insomnia or sleeping too much
- Tiredness and lack of energy, so even small tasks take extra effort
- Sudden weight loss or weight gain
- Anxiety, agitation, or restlessness
- Slowed thinking, speaking, or body movements
- Feelings of worthlessness or guilt, fixating on past failures or self-blame
- Trouble thinking, concentrating, making decisions, and remembering things.
- Frequent thoughts of death, suicidal thoughts, suicide attempts, or suicide
- Unexplained physical problems, such as back pain or headaches
Check out the depression category of our blog, and make sure to stay tuned in to our social media feeds for more mental health tidbits. You can find us at youthdynamicsmt on Instagram, or Youth Dynamics of Montana and People of Youth Dynamics on Facebook.