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Depression in Men: Causes, Symptoms, and Cure

A mental health condition called depression is characterized by protracted feelings of melancholy and hopelessness and a lack of enthusiasm for or enjoyment from activities. It affects a person's everyday life, relationships, and general well-being significantly and goes beyond typical sentiments of melancholy or loss.

Very sad and depressed men, thinking of suicide due to mental health issues. Save men

Nevertheless, it's generally assumed that, because of a variety of societal influences and cultural norms, depression in men may be underdiagnosed or underreported more frequently.

The World Health Organization (WHO) estimates that over 264 million people worldwide, of both genders, suffer from depression. Researchers have found that men may report their symptoms or seek care less frequently than women, which could explain why men might suffer from lower rates of clinical depression than women.

According to one American study that was published in JAMA Psychiatry in 2013, the lifetime prevalence of major depressive disorder for men was roughly 20.6%. Approximately 9.2% of males in the United States who are 20 or older have experienced depression in the two weeks prior to the incident, according to a 2019 study that was published in JAMA Network Open.

What are some symptoms of depression?

  1. Persistent Sadness: Deep melancholy, emptiness, or a generally depressed state that lasts for the majority of the day almost every day is referred to as persistent sadness.

  2. Loss of Energy and Fatigue: Constantly feeling exhausted or lacking in energy, irrespective of a good night's sleep or little physical activity

  3. Sleep disorders: Changes in sleep patterns include insomnia (difficulty falling or staying asleep) or hypersomnia (extreme sleepiness and prolonged sleep).

  4. Difficulty Concentrating: Having difficulties with concentration, making judgments, or experiencing cognitive impairment are all examples of issues with concentration. There may also be memory issues.

  5. Recurrent Death Thoughts: Constantly having thoughts of passing away, dying, or committing suicide, or having suicidal thoughts or making an attempt at suicide

  6. Physical Symptoms: Experiencing physiological difficulties that are not related to any health condition, such as headaches and migraines, stomach issues, muscular aches, or other unexplained symptoms

  7. Feelings of Worthlessness or Guilt: Feelings of chronic worthlessness, overwhelming guilt, or self-blame despite the absence of any discernible cause

An african american man in deep thought, in sad mood, may be due to depression

Is depression curable?

Several individuals who suffer from depression are able to recover and enjoy happy lives since it is a treatable disorder. It's crucial to remember that the idea of "treatment" for depression can be challenging. Treatments that may be used in conjunction to address depression include therapy, medication, lifestyle modifications, and continuing support. Some people could go through a complete remission of their symptoms and stop meeting the requirements for a depressive condition.

With the appropriate care and assistance, some people may discover that their symptoms gradually become more tolerable and less severe. Even so, it's always possible to have depressive episodes in the future, especially during trying times or times when stress levels are high.

A man suffering from depression taking medication and smiling

What are some treatments for depression?

For depression, there are numerous successful therapies available.

  • Psychotherapy: Cognitive-behavioral therapy (CBT), a type of interpersonal therapy, is frequently used for treating depression. It emphasizes figuring out and altering undesirable mental patterns and actions that cause depression. Interpersonal therapy (IPT) and psychodynamic therapy are two more therapeutic modalities that may be helpful.

  • Support system: Having a strong network of family, friends, or support organizations around you can be quite helpful in controlling depression. Expressing your thoughts and feelings with sympathetic people might help you feel less alone and encourage you emotionally.

  • Pharmaceuticals: medications known as antidepressants can help treat depression symptoms. Antidepressants from the Zoloft-norepinephrine reuptake inhibitor (SNRI), selective serotonin reuptake inhibitor (SSRI), and other groups are frequently administered. When taking drugs, it's crucial to work closely with a healthcare provider to track their efficacy and handle any potential adverse effects.

  • Support groups: Attending an organization that specializes in treating depression might give you a sense of belonging and comprehension. It can be quite beneficial to exchange experiences and coping mechanisms with other people who have had comparable difficulties.

  • Take part in enjoyable activities. Depression might make it harder to find pleasure in past interests. Even if you don't feel like it at first, try to find pleasure in something. Hobbies, quality time with loved ones, and artistic pursuits may all lift your spirits and give you a sense of fulfillment.

  • Participate in fun actions: Depression may make it more difficult to appreciate prior passions. Try to enjoy something, even if at first you don't feel like it. Hobbies, interacting with loved ones, and artistic endeavors can all uplift your mood and make you feel content.

What are some causes of depression in men?

A man facing mental health issues, consulting a doctor in USA

A series of genetic, biochemical, environmental, and psychological factors can have an influence on men's depression.

  • Biological elements: Some alterations in the physiology of the brain or hormonal levels may contribute to the onset of depression. If there is a familial history of depression, men are additionally more susceptible to the illness.

  • Social and cultural factors: social and cultural expectations may have an impact on how men acquire depression. Men are frequently dissuaded by conventional gender standards from admitting to being susceptible or asking for assistance, which can result in feelings of loneliness and sadness. Relationship issues, stress at work, money troubles, or a lack of social support can all be contributing causes.

  • Addiction to substances: To ease their symptoms, depressed men may turn to drinking or using drugs. However, drug abuse increases the chance of developing a co-occurring substance use disorder and can make depression worse.

  • Cognitive causes: stress, which can be unresolved trauma or loss, poor self-worth, feelings of unworthiness, or a negative body image, are some psychological causes of depression in men. Men who experience emotional difficulties or have trouble expressing their emotions may also be more prone to depression.

A depressed man thinking what to dot next

Guys, depression is not an easy enemy. It can approach you from all sides like a cunning ninja. Fear not, though, as there is a way to approach it, even though the causes of sadness in men can be a mystery. Think of it as a treasure hunt with hints from the biological, psychological, social, and cultural worlds hidden along the way. You can find the key that opens the door to recovery by unraveling these hints. It's similar to finding the hidden key to the hidden happy treasure. And what's this? There are many mental health specialists available who are willing to serve as your reliable traveling companions. They have the skills, resources, and assistance to guide you through the trials and tribulations. So put on your explorer's headgear, get up the confidence, and go off on this journey in search of a better future. Remember that you can conquer depression by using the correct techniques, getting help, and persevering a little bit.

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