I. Psychological symptoms
The depression affects the thinking significantly, so that the person views every event in life through gray lens. He is pessimistic, guilt prone and humorless. The symptoms are severe enough to cause a noticeable change from the person’s previous functioning.
- Sadness of Mood The patients themselves report that they feel gloomy, low and unhappy about every thing in life. The quality of depressed mood is experienced as indescribably painful and is perceived most of the day, nearly every day over a sustained period of time (at least two weeks)
No amount of consolations or pleasurable activities can overcome the mournful state of mind. Some may turn irritable and pickup fights on trivial domestic issues, others appear as if he or she is about to cry any time. The facial expressions of the person reflect his feelings and often the brow is furrowed.
- Loss of interest or pleasure Depressed individual are not only insensitive to pleasant events as well as to unpleasant events. They lose interest and stop indulging in activities and hobbies that were previously considered to be pleasurable. They frequently complaint that they no longer believe in work and find no interest in it. They are not able to enjoy the company of their loved ones and isolate themselves socially.
- Sense of worthlessness and guilt A depressed person tends to carry a pessimistic view about self, others and the future. Because of such negative self – evaluation they harbor mean views about themselves and suffer from feeling of worthlessness. They are prone to have guilt feelings about trivial and neutral issues. All this leads to a loss of confidence and low self esteem. They remain hopeless about the future of self and the world. In severe cases, the patient may claim that the world will come to an end.
- Death wishes and death acts The sense of worthlessness and hopelessness may be so severe that patient may attempt to end his / her life. In mild cases there are passive death wishes or just an feeling that “it is better to be dead rather than having such a miserable life” but in severe cases patients may actively plan and attempt to end their lives. (more about danger signals)
- Inability to think / mental slowness In depression, many individuals complaint of inability to think clearly. They perceive dullness in their mind, so they express difficulty in making decision or concentrating for long periods. They get distracted easily and at the same time complaint of excessive forgetfulness.