Crippling depression is a widespread health problem that affects one in every ten Americans. This persistent anxiety condition is also referred to as major depressive disorder or major depression. When you are battling the condition, sometimes getting through the day is challenging. You’ll struggle to perform everyday tasks such as eating and sleeping.
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What Are the Symptoms of Crippling Depression?
It’s normal to feel depressed, more so when things don’t go your way. However, if the depressive episodes last for more than two weeks and you feel sad, miserable, and lose interest in activities that you found exciting, you could be battling major depression. If I have crippling depression, even the most basic functioning will be limited. For instance, I won’t be able to live normally or attend to my duties.
If left untreated, crippling depression can end up becoming a lifelong struggle. Those who have battled the condition have a unique experience, but there are tell-tale signs that cut across the board. It’s best to keep in mind that we all experience depression symptoms from time to time, which doesn’t mean you have crippling depression. Here are the top three signs of crippling depression:
1. Social Symptoms
The behavioral symptoms of crippling depression include:
- Failure to complete tasks in school or at work
- Withdrawing from friends and family members
- Reliance on sedatives and alcohol
- Inability to concentrate
- Losing interest in previously pleasurable activities
2. Physical Symptoms
The physical symptoms of crippling depression include:
- A change in weight or appetite (it may either increase or decrease)
- Speaking or moving more slowly than normal
- Lack of energy
- Unexplained pains and aches (typically headaches)
- Low sex drive
- Disturbed sleep (difficulties in falling asleep or waking up)
- Changes to the menstrual cycle
3. Psychological Symptoms
The psychological symptoms of crippling depression include:
- Feeling helpless and hopeless
- Low self-esteem
- Persistent sadness and low mood
- Feeling guilt-ridden and tearful
- Irritability and intolerance towards others
- Suicidal or self-harm thoughts
The three categories of crippling depression symptoms often set in gradually. Thus, it can be difficult to notice that something isn’t right. Usually, patients try to cope with the symptoms they experience without realizing they have crippling depression.
Sometimes, it takes a family member or friend to suggest something isn’t right for a patient to realize that he/she is unwell. It’s best to see a mental health expert if you experience symptoms of crippling depression every day for more than two weeks.
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Treatment for Crippling Depression
Many of the interventions used to treat other types of depression are applicable in treating crippling depression. However, since crippling depression is more debilitating than other forms of depression, the treatment interventions used tend to be more intense to deal with this disorder’s symptoms. The available treatment options include:
Undoubtedly, this is the most prevalent treatment for depression. If I have crippling depression, talking to a therapist is an excellent catalyst for change. Therapists help patients to adapt to the stressors that cause crippling depression. Thus, they learn to respond to these stressors without arousing depressive thoughts and feelings.
Sometimes, mental health practitioners prescribe antidepressants to patients battling crippling depression. These medications are often used to control chemicals and hormones that balance neurotransmitters. Ultimately, this improves patients’ emotional and mental wellbeing.
Electroconvulsive Therapy (ECT)
This is an advanced intervention for crippling depression, mostly used in situations where other treatment methods have failed. When undergoing ECT, doctors electrically stimulate patients’ brains to adjust chemicals that cause depression chemically.
In severe cases, patients battling crippling depression may attempt suicide. Likewise, they may not be able to take proper care of themselves or those who depend on them. When this happens, the affected patients will be a threat to themselves and others.
Short-term inpatient care is helpful in such cases. Often, this comprehensive care is integrated with medication and therapy to help patients reach a point where they can live normally outside the hospital environment.
Apart from the conventional interventions for crippling depression, patients can cope with the disorder by employing tactics that improve their mood. Some of these tactics include:
Getting into a Routine
Following a basic routine, every day gives you the push to keep going even if you don’t feel up to it.
Have a Support System
Depression can result from feeling lonely. A robust support system helps you avoid loneliness, besides complementing the treatment you might be receiving for your depression
Staying physically active is good for your physical and mental wellbeing. It’s easy for depressive symptoms to creep in when you’re idle.
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If you’re struggling with depression, you need help from mental health professionals. Do not allow the disorder to control your life. Instead, schedule an appointment with the therapists at Mango Clinic today to start your health and wellness journey.