Misconceptions about living with depression
Depression is a serious mental health condition that is often associated with continuous feelings of anguish and loss of interest in day to day activities. It can impact how one feels, behaves or even thinks. If left untreated, depression can lead to severe emotional and physical problems. Even though depression can manifest at any point in an individual’s life, the symptoms may vary in case of adults and teens.
It is commonly observed that people have a lot of misconceptions regarding this particular mental health condition. Let us re-visit some common false impressions pertaining to living with depression.
- A depressed individual is constantly sad: While persistent sadness is a trait of depression, yet, it is a common misconception that a depressed individual is constantly sad. Helena Plater Zyberk, a health, wellness, and fitness expert, stated that a lot of people would be surprised to know that depressed people may experience a range of emotions including feeling joyful.
- A depressed individual cannot snap out of it: One of the biggest misconceptions about those suffering from depression is that they cannot consciously snap out of it. For instance, depression cannot be warded off simply by thinking happy thoughts. People need to understand that depression is an illness caused due to some kind of chemical imbalance in the brain and is beyond anyone’s control.
- Depression is not always caused by a trigger: A lot of people have the misconception that depression is always caused by a trigger. Although depression can be an outcome of some traumatic event in an individual’s life, but sometimes, an individual can also feel depressed after waking up from sleep without any particular reason. Dr. Melissa Pereau, medical director, Loma Linda University Behavioral Medicine Center, pointed out that depressive episodes lasting for months together can often occur without any particular reason.
- Remaining in isolation is not always the best option: Dr. Don Mordecai of Kaiser Permanente pointed out that many a times by simply checking on a loved one suffering from depression, can go a long way in making the individual feel that you care. Therefore, leaving a depressed person in isolation may not be the solution.
- Depression is similar in everyone: Psychotherapist Dr. Tameka Brewington said that not everyone faces the same kind of depression. While some individuals may wish to sleep most of the time, there may be others who do not get any sleep. Considering the fact that depression presents itself in varied ways, it is important to understand that different individuals with mental illness will have different needs.
- Medication can treat depression instantly: While medications may definitely ease depressive symptoms, they cannot treat an individual instantly. Dr. Michael Genovese, chief medical officer of Acadia Healthcare, said that some chronic cases of mental depression, call for chronic treatment. It is also important to continue taking the medication until the doctor gives a green signal to discontinue, he said.
- Misinterpreting depression symptoms: A lot of times depressed individuals may show signs of poor appetite, lack of sleep, poor memory, low energy, and lethargy. Dr. Zainab Delawalla, a clinical psychologist in Atlanta, pointed out that often people attribute the aforementioned symptoms to other illnesses. That is how a lot of people remain undiagnosed and untreated for a long time.
- Strong-headed individuals cannot be affected by depression: This is one of the most common misconceptions. People need to understand that depression can hit anyone, irrespective of their level of mental strength. Another misconception is that depressed people are usually lazy.
- Medication is the only treatment option for depression: People fail to understand that there is a lot to managing depression than just popping depression pills. Apart from medication, there are several other treatment options such as lifestyle changes, therapy, meditation, and so much more.
- Depression lasts for a particular time frame: According to Lynn R. Zakeri, a licensed clinical social worker in Illinois, depression is not a time bound illness. Sometimes, people feel that since they experienced it once, they are at a greater risk of facing relapse. While clinical depression typically lasts for at least two weeks at a stretch, people can go thorough phases where they may feel perfectly fine at one moment, and then again relapse after coming off medications.
Seeking treatment for depression
Depression afflicts more than 17 million American adults every year. It can affect anyone regardless of gender, age, social standing, and ethnic background. Major depression can lead to severe impairment, interfering with or limiting one’s ability to perform daily activities. If left untreated, depression can develop into a chronic disease and affect a person’s relationships, official commitments, social circle, and much more. Therefore, one must seek professional intervention at the earliest.
If you or a loved one is exhibiting depressive symptoms, seek professional help immediately. Get in touch with the Texas Depression Treatment Help that assists in accessing the best depression treatment centers in Texas that specialize in delivering evidence-based intervention plans. Call our 24/7 helpline number (866) 827-0282 or chat online to know more about depression treatment in Texas.