To kick off Mental Illness Awareness Week, I would like to talk a little about depression.
First of all, depression is more than just feeling sad. Being sad is a normal human emotion and can be expected in a variety of situations. Being depressed is more associated with feeling hopeless, worthless, lonely, unmotivated, and losing interest in everyday activities.
There are many factors that contribute to depression, such as neurochemical imbalances, stress, family history, hormonal changes such as menstruation or childbirth, brain structure, and even certain medications and drugs. None of these factors have anything to do with being "weak" or "broken."
It's also important to note that depression affects all sorts of people, even those who seemingly "have it all." Outwardly, a person experiencing depression may seem fine, but internally they could be coping with feeling not good enough or not wanting to get out of bed in the morning or not being interested in activities they usually enjoy.
Treatment for depression typically consists of talk therapy and/or medication. Science has shown that a combination of the two has the best results vs just talk therapy or just medication. It can take time to find a treatment system that works for you, because everyone's depression is different, but know that it does get better.