What are The Symptoms Of Depression In Women?
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The symptoms of depression in women can severely impact social and occupational functioning as well as impair a woman’s ability to care for a child. Depression is a debilitating illness that one-in-eight women can expect to experience in their lifetime and is characterized by prolonged periods of a low, or depressed, mood. It’s important to remember, however, that depression is a very treatable mental illness.
Symptoms Of Depression In Women includes
- Mood swings. We’ve all endured circumstances where we feel like we’re “walking on eggshells” around a certain person who we can never count on being consistent in nature; the same shows symptoms of depression in women. If the lady in question is normally even-tempered and suddenly displays extreme moods, depression may be at the root of her abnormally variable behavior – By far the most common seen as symptoms of depression in women
- Excessive crying. This often occurs for no explicable reason and can go on for hours, or even days in extreme cases. For some women, emotional displays of crying are fairly normal; for others, crying is far more controlled, usually reserved for serious matters such as loss, grief, and genuine sadness. If a woman is crying more than normal, for no apparent (or justifiable) reason, or exhibiting longer periods of crying, this may indicate symptoms of depression in women.
- Insufficient or disturbed sleep. This includes difficulty falling asleep as well as staying asleep. In its extreme, it evolves into serious levels of insomnia, in and of itself dangerous when any form of alertness is required. Nightmares may or may not be part of this, but if they are abnormal and begin to occur frequently, this is another symptoms of depression in women.
- Failure to maintain looks and appearance. This is one of the more obvious symptoms of depression in women. Unless a woman has historically not cared about how she looks or dresses, then this is a telltale hint. Ceasing to wear make-up without reason (such as a sudden allergy to make-up), wearing unclean or sloppy clothing, failing to shower or bath and keep hair freshly washed, and gaining large amounts of weight quickly are the top indicators.
- Neglecting a spouse, children, or even pets. This, too, is an obvious, very much outward symptoms of depression in women, and is felt by every member for the family.
- Loss of interest in work or career, or in a favorite hobby or television program. This may be more subtle to detect because the lack of job interest may only show at work, and the enjoyment of television can easily be dismissed by excuses such as having too much work or housework to do.
- Negative comments and complaining. This only applies in the case of a woman who is normally positive and complains when a real issue is at hand. It becomes a problem and symptoms of depression in women when the negativity and complaints are unwarranted.
- Irregular menstruation. While this is definitely a physical symptom, depression can affect the tight hormonal pattern that comprises a regular 28-day cycle for women in their child-bearing years. Some women claim that depression also causes or worsens pre-menstrual syndrome (PMS), but thus far no direct correlation has been uncovered in clinical studies and in fact the reverse may be true. More research needs to be done.
- Loss of self-esteem, often demonstrated as self-criticism. Self-deprecating remarks made by women can confound and frustrate their male counterparts. A woman claims to feel ugly or fat when her husband or boyfriend sees her as lovely and with a fine figure. What the man does not understand is that these views of self by their women are couched in depression and not mirrored in reality. To wit, the negative self image serves to exacerbate the depression. It’s a vicious circle. This is not just relating to physical appearance, and also manifests in women feeling as though they are inadequate wives, incapable mothers or imperfect friends.
- Lack of sexual desire. Again, this is only apt to be a symptoms of depression in women who are otherwise normally interested in intimacy with their sexual partners. Other factors, too, can cause a weak libido, but when it is combined with other symptoms as cited herein, this is a reasonable indicator.
- Diminished energy levels and lack of motivation. This boils down to lethargy and it shows, especially when a woman is normally vibrant and lively. In its extreme, this symptom can be debilitating.
- Unexplained, significant weight gain or loss. As long as eating habits have not shifted to any extent, or regular exercise has been stopped, weight gain or loss should be minimal. Conversely, in women with depression, appetite may be affected and result in large adjustments in body weight.
Symptoms of depression in women are commonly seen in women with
- History of abuse, sexual abuse
- Use of an oral contraceptive, particularly those with a high progesterone content
- Use of gonadotropin stimulants as part of infertility treatment
- Loss of social supports, or the threat of this loss
- Lack of intimacy and marital discord
- Miscarriage or unwanted pregnancy
- Premenstrual problems
- Perimenopause and menopause
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