Men and Depression
Published on Monday, November 28th, 2011 at 8:50 pm and is filed under Depression
Depression is seen as “a disease of the century”, but it unfortunately remains a disease of this century. It doesn’t affect on poor people, it doesn’t choose the rich ones in a special way: it doesn’t have preference to age, occupation, etc. However is true that some certain circumstances favor installing depression, it would seem that the most important is the presence of depression in the family (a family member suffers or has suffered from depression), stress, loss of a loved one, chronic diseases.
Without being treated, depression can bring a person’s life beyond the lower or higher daily burdens: personal, professional, financial, etc. In extreme cases there may occur suicide! Therefore, a correct diagnosis and put in time is likely to bring the person in distress on a good path of life, she brings back the lust of life, everyday tone, performance at work etc.
The extent of symptoms varies from person to person. Subjects describe symptoms of depression using terms such as “sad”, “anxious”, “empty”, “feel free” and so on. A depression is a constant “sadness” that makes apathetic and restless subjects, as when it foresee a great danger. Here is how M speaks of himself, a 37 years old man:” I thought I was numb as if I could not move. I couldn’t do anything I was going in the city like crazy, arrived in the forest and watched… One day, returning, my wife asked me if the weather is bad and I wasn’t able to answer her. I haven’t seen anything except me, going in an empty city. I could see only sadness, only sadness and nothing else.
Constant feelings, deep pessimism, despair and sadness is a common symptom of depression. Anxiety associated with these feelings is also defining, without any reason.
Here are the main symptoms of depression in males:
- Feeling of guilt, hopelessness, helplessness, weakness. It outlines the background of degradation and self-esteem. The subject responds difficult to express urgent requests marked by the verb “must”. A 43 years old teacher described his situation: “…I felt useless. I said that all I do is worthless, it’s not really interested in others… I thought to change something in my life, to move, to leave the city, to divorce. However I couldn’t! I knew that I’m not able either to take a decision or translate it into action.”
- Loss of interest, lack of mood, the desire to do something. Standing in front of a project that you should make, the subject fails before starting. The person is not interested in the everyday activities that previously she used to realize without any effort. Even a football match or a backgammon game with neighbor becomes to be regarded. A 31 years old man expressed his state: “I don’t like to go the stadium, I don’t want meet with friends at bar… I’m terrified when I wake up and realize that I have to go back to work… I don’t want even sex. I began to drink more, home, alone.”
- Lack of energy, chronic fatigue. Intellectual activity becomes slower reactions and movements also. Slow motions that are characterized, associate with a deep fatigue.
- Difficulties of concentration in taking a decision; memory problems. These symptoms complicate the personal and professional life; subject has difficulties in working to assume and carry out more hard tasks. He works without any mood, in state of absence, risk with his job.
- Difficulties to wake up and sleep. Insomnia becomes a chronic symptom, often accompanied other sleep disorders. Subject can wake up at midnight and think about where he is. Another issue is that he can sleep up to 12 hours and then to wake up famished.
- Changes in appetite. From case to case, there is loss of appetite (subject says that “food has not any taste”). When the feeling of anxiety is overwhelming, the subject doesn’t touch the food. Eventually the subject losses in wait. Other subjects get to eat more than ever. It is still said that an increase in appetite is rare in women than in men.
- Agitation and irritability. In men depression can occur through tantrums, the state of irritation and agitation increase. Subject simply can’t master himself. He is ravaged of gloomy thoughts that grind him, he tries to set him free from frustration blaming people around him. Here’s how P. a 44 years old man, described himself: “I missed the sense of reality, I couldn’t do anything or change something. I wasn’t able to think about what should I do after an hour. I didn’t like anything! I didn’t like myself and other. I was furious. I was moving from anger to grief and sorrow. One night in March, I went out in the yard and began to hit the trees. Then I came back home, took the gun and shot some bullets into the air…”
- Persistent physical symptoms. Stress, tension, fatigue is often, stomachache, indigestion, colic pain, headache, difficult breathing and painful breathing, etc.
- Thoughts of suicide. Is possible to get suicidal intent and suicide attempts. The risk is particularly serious for men because usually they look to give up life applying violent methods, more “secure” than women. Suicidal intent is an expression of chronic depression and appears as a remedy to a hypothetical situation considered, decisively, without any output which becomes unbearable.
Men tend to delay, to avoid the appointment with doctor. Often they look for help when depression becomes severe, eventually they do it to please their families (wives, parents, etc.) or the professional rate becomes low and it can’t be accepted by boss. It’s useful to know that through treatment their state can improve. The first step is the appointment with family doctor (eventually with specialists), so that after examination all possible causes should be eliminated. Viral infections, thyroid disease, low testosterone can lead to similar symptoms. An assessment includes a nuanced history of all symptoms (onset, duration, intensity), use of alcohol and /or drugs, the existence of death or suicide ideas; the presence of depression in the family.
Treatment methods vary depending on diagnosis, severity of symptoms and threads (from medication to psychotherapy). If doctor prescribes him medicine, often, patient is tempted to give up quickly, which is a mistake, because it may bring back the depressive symptoms. Typically, short-term psychotherapy takes between 10 and 20 weeks. For convenience, it happens that some subjects prefer (or require if possible) medication. Family, friends, colleagues can be a great support for patient. Emotional support given to a person’s depression involves more understanding, patience, affection, the ability to value him and to involve him in family activities.