Depression is one of the most common mental health conditions in the United States. Depression is more than just feeling sad or down sometimes. It is a mood disorder that affects how you feel, think, and deal with daily life.

Common Symptoms of Depression

  • Hopelessness or feelings of guilt
  • Loss of interest or pleasure in usual activities
  • Changes in appetite
  • Changes in sleep
  • Loss of energy
  • Agitation and restlessness
  • Trouble thinking clearly or concentrating
  • Physical aches
  • Suicidal thoughts

What causes depression?
Depression can be triggered by something specific, like a traumatic life event. But it can also happen unexpectedly. Some common factors:

  • Going through a traumatic experience, especially at an early age
  • Genetics (mood disorders can run in families)
  • Medical conditions, like chronic pain or anxiety
  • Drug and alcohol use

Treatment for Depression
It is important to get a specific evaluation for depression and a treatment plan. A treatment plan might include:

  • Therapy
  • Medicine
  • Exercise to help with symptoms
  • Alternative approaches, like meditation or nutrition

Learn more about depression and view a screening tool in the Dealing with Depression newsletter.

To find help for depression, call us or search for a provider.

This article is for educational purposes only and is not intended to diagnose conditions or to be a substitute for professional medical advice. If you think you might have a behavioral health condition, please seek help from a medical professional.