Signs of Depression | Kaiser Permanente

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When someone's really depressed or seriously depressed, it's pretty obvious.

I mean, they're crying, they're sad, they may be saying they're suicidal.

So, that part's not really very tough.

I think everybody kind of gets that.

It's the people who are mild to moderately depressed, it can be hard to tell.

There are important things to watch out for, like if people are more irritable than usual.

That's kind of a common presentation of a mild to moderate depression that is something

you might not really think about.

You might just chalk it up to, you know, they had a bad day, but so if someone is kind of

irritable going on weeks at a time, then you need to think about depression.

Also if they are complaining, like trouble with sleep or unusual body upsets, like stomachaches

or something.

For people with mild to moderate depression, those would kind of be tips, clues.

Anxiety is a little more subtle to see.

Often, people don't look anxious on the outside.

It has to be pretty bad, often, before you get outside manifestations.

Like they're having shaking or having a panic attack, where they're saying their heart's

beating fast or whatever.

So, for people with more mild anxiety, where they don't have these outward physical manifestations,

you know, things to be listening for or watching for is if they seem to be worrying a lot.

That would be kind of a tip off that someone's having some kind of mild to moderate anxiety.

They're worried a lot about the future, sort of unrealistic or unnecessary worries about


Again, these things aren't occurring in isolation, it's sort of like a package deal.

They kind of have some irritability, they're not sleeping so well, and maybe they're eating

more or less.

Another important point of all this is that it's sort of affecting level of function and

quality of life.

A normal personality has a big range.

For those people, if they're functioning well and it's not affecting their quality of life,

then that's just their personality and that's okay.

But if someone's having some of these warning signs, or possible warning signs, and their

quality of life isn't as good or they're not functioning as well, then that kind of adds

up to something that might be worth looking into.

It's really not worth suffering in life and having a lousy life and lousy quality of life,

as opposed to coming to see some professional to get help.

Depression and anxiety are just physical illnesses, just like diabetes.

You come see a professional and we help you get better.