If you have some of these symptoms for at least 2 weeks,
talk to your doctor. Treatment may be right for you.
If you think
you may have depression, take a short quiz to check your symptoms:
- Interactive Tool: Are You Depressed?
How is it treated?
Depression can be treated in
various ways. Counseling, psychotherapy, and/or antidepressant medicines are
all used. Lifestyle changes, such as getting more exercise, also may help. Your
doctor or mental health professional will help you find the best treatment.
If you have mild or moderate depression, your family doctor or a
mental health professional, such as a counselor or
psychologist, may treat you. If you have severe
depression or if treatment is not helping, you may need to see a
psychiatrist. Some people need to be treated in the
hospital, especially if they have thoughts of suicide.
your health care team to find the best treatment for you. It may take a few
tries, and it can take several weeks for the medicine to start working. Try to
be patient and keep following your treatment plan.
return (relapse). How likely you are to get depression again
increases each time you have a bout of depression.
Taking your medicines and continuing some types of therapy after you feel
better can help keep that from happening. Some people need to take medicine for
the rest of their lives. This does not stop them from living full and happy
Let your doctor know if you think you are depressed.
Depression is easy to overlook. The earlier you are treated, the more quickly
you will get better.
What can you do if a loved one has depression?
someone you care for is depressed, the best thing you can do is help the person
get or stay in treatment. Learn about the disease. Talk to the person and
gently encourage him or her to do things and see people. Don't get upset with
the person. The behavior you see is the disease, not the person.
Is suicide a concern?
Many people who have
depression have thoughts of death or thoughts of suicide, and depression can
lead to suicide. Learn the
warning signs of suicide, which include talking a lot
about death, giving things away, or using a lot of alcohol or drugs or both. If
you see these signs in yourself or a loved one, get help.
Call 911 or the national suicide hotline at 1-800-273-TALK (1-800-273-8255) or other emergency services if you (or someone you care about who
- Plan to harm yourself or others.
- Talk, write,
read, or draw about death, including writing suicide notes and talking about
items that can harm you, such as pills, guns, or knives.
- Buy guns
or bullets, stockpile medicines, or take other action to prepare for a suicide
attempt. You may have a new interest in guns or other weapons.
or see things that aren't real.
- Think or speak in a bizarre way
that is not like your usual behavior.