Depression is one of the most commonly diagnosed mental health conditions, but doctors and scientists estimate that only around half of the people who suffer from depression get a diagnosis. Since a diagnosis is often the first step towards treatment and improving your mental wellbeing, discussing your depression with a Dallas psychiatrist is important.
The challenge is that many of these people do not realize they have depression because they do not have the typical symptoms we associate with depression – trouble getting out of bed, withdrawal from relationships and work, and thoughts of suicide. The symptoms may be less severe or they may be different from the symptoms you expect.
When the symptoms are not severe and they do not make it difficult for you to get through your day-to-day life, some people will call it “walking depression.” Clinically, this is called Persistent Depressive Disorder.
Symptoms of Walking Depression
The extreme symptoms often associated with depression are usually symptoms of Major Depressive Disorder. These symptoms can be intense and make it difficult to get through the day, but they typically go away after a few months. Persistent Depressive Disorder has milder symptoms that can last for years.
Because the symptoms are milder, you may not recognize them or depression. Some of the signs of walking depression include:
- Feelings of Irritability – If you are frequently annoyed at little things and lose your temper, it could be caused by depression.
- Loss of Interest in Your Hobbies – You can slowly become disinterested in your long term interests, which also compounds your depression since you are no longer doing the things that bring you joy.
- Avoiding Social Situations – Because many people with walking depression work to appear happy with others, being in social situations can be exhausting and you may start to avoid them.
- Unexplained Physical Pain – Depression often manifests with physical symptoms like back pain or chest pain that has no other cause.
- Drug Use, Gambling, or Other Destructive Behaviors – Excessive use of alcohol or drugs and behaviors like gambling can distract you from feelings of emptiness.
- Constant Exhaustion – Depression keeps your physical and mental energy low, causing you to feel tired all the time. You may or may not also have insomnia.
- Trouble Concentrating and Decision Making – Depression reduces your memory, comprehension, and problem solving capabilities.
Many people may feel that they can power through walking depression, and without a diagnosis, they often do not have emotional support that can assist in managing depression. But this is like any other form of depression. Getting professional treatment from a psychiatrist can help you reduce even mild symptoms and make it possible to live without depression.
Dr. Sehdev at Aware Behavioral Health takes the time to talk with you about your experiences and emotions. With his experience treating depression in Dallas, he can help you determine if what you are experiencing is depression or another condition, and work with you to create an effective treatment plan.
If any of these signs and symptoms sound like something you have experienced, set up an appointment with Aware Behavioral Health and effectively reduce your depression.