Feeling Alone and Depressed

Feeling Alone and DepressedDepression often makes a person unwilling or unable to talk to supportive friends, even when positive interactions are just what the person needs.

Symptoms of Depression

According to the National Institute of Mental Health (NIMH) there are many forms of depression, ranging from mild to severe. Sometimes a person will experience seasonal bouts of depression, or the illness may be brought on by a serious life event, such as a loved one’s death.

According to NIMH, a person may experience a few or all of the following symptoms of depression:

  • Ongoing sadness, anxiety or emptiness
  • Feelings of hopelessness and pessimism
  • Feelings of guilt, worthlessness and helplessness
  • Lost interest in hobbies and pleasurable activities
  • Feelings of fatigue
  • Trouble with concentration, memory and decision making
  • Trouble with sleep, such as early-morning awakening or oversleeping
  • Appetite and/or weight changes
  • Suicidal thoughts or attempts
  • Restlessness and irritability
  • Persistent physical symptoms, such as headaches or stomachaches

A person’s symptoms may begin on the low end of the spectrum and then build in intensity over time.

Social Withdrawal and Depression

Often when people begin feeling the initial effects of depression, they withdraw from social interactions. While this seems like a natural response to feeling sad and fatigued, isolation from friends puts increased stress on individuals, according to WebMD. Since avoiding contact with friends and family makes depression worse, it is best to make a concerted effort to reach out. Individuals should start by making a list of people who are important and calling them to schedule activities.

According to WebMD other techniques that help alleviate depression symptoms include the following activities:

  • Getting out and exercising—Exercise improves mood and helps avoid self-defeating thoughts.
  • Avoiding alcohol and drugs—Substance abuse only increases the severity of depression.
  • Avoiding negative thoughts—Dwelling on positive achievements and happy memories instead of obsessing about the negative details of life can help fight depression.

Taking positive steps to alleviate symptoms of depression can help individuals avoid the cycle of isolation and further depression.

Treatment for Depression

There are highly effective treatments for depression; the most common strategy is to use medication and talk therapy. Antidepressant medications work by stabilizing brain chemicals. NIMH notes that the most popular new medications are selective serotonin reuptake inhibitors (SSRIs) although physicians should be careful prescribing these drugs due to unintended side effects in adolescents.

Need Help Finding Treatment for Depression?

Depression is a serious illness, but it responds well to positive interventions, such as a healthy diet and exercise routine. Professional treatment, including talk therapy, is the best way to achieve full recovery. Do not suffer alone without help; please call our toll-free number today. Our counselors are available 24 hours a day to offer help and advice. Call us today and get started on the path to a better life.