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Feeling Depressed - Preparing For Your Appointment

To prepare for your appointment, see the topic Making the Most of Your Appointment.

Before seeing your health professional, it may be helpful to keep a diary of your symptoms. You can help your health professional diagnose and treat your condition by being prepared to answer the following questions:

  • How long have you been troubled with a depressed mood? What is your major symptom?
  • What was happening in your life when the depressed mood started?
  • How long have you had your symptoms? Do they come and go or are they always present?
  • Have you ever had a similar problem in the past? If so, how was it treated?
  • What makes your symptoms better or worse?
  • Do you have any other symptoms that may be related to your major symptom? Symptoms may include:
    • Rapid or irregular heartbeat.
    • Nausea or vomiting.
    • Numbness or weakness.
    • Excessive sweating.
    • Feeling like you are not able to get enough air (air hunger).
    • Restlessness, irritability, or feeling on edge.
    • Feelings of overwhelming anxiety or fear.
  • What prescription or nonprescription medicines are you currently taking?
  • Are you using alcohol or illegal drugs, such as marijuana or cocaine, to manage your symptoms?
  • Have you ever attempted suicide?
  • Has a family member or close friend attempted or committed suicide?
  • Has anyone else in your family ever been diagnosed with a mental health problem, such as depression or an anxiety disorder?
  • Are you taking a medicine to treat depression? What is the medicine? When did you start the medicine? What is the dose that you are taking? Have you or your health professional changed the dose?
  • Do you have any health risks?

    This information is produced and provided by the National Cancer Institute (NCI). The information in this topic may have changed since it was written. For the most current information, contact the National Cancer Institute via the Internet web site at http:// cancer .gov or call 1-800-4-CANCER.

    WebMD Medical Reference from Healthwise

    Last Updated: November 27, 2012
    This information is not intended to replace the advice of a doctor. Healthwise disclaims any liability for the decisions you make based on this information.
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