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Could You Be Overlooking Signs of Depression? – 7 Uncommon Symptoms

There’s a lot of information available (in books and on the internet) about depression and which symptoms to watch out for.

Of course, feeling sad and hopeless are some of the most common ones. Also, having a low mood in general. However, these only scratch the surface when it comes to symptoms related to depression.

In fact, there are several symptoms connected to depression than can be easily misunderstood for something else completely. Such as?

Let’s take a closer look at seven uncommon depression symptoms.

1. Trouble Focusing on Tasks

One overlooked symptom of depression may be when you struggle to focus on a task or project. Perhaps it feels as if your mind is somewhere else altogether. Or maybe you have trouble initiating a task and being able to give it the attention it deserves.

On first thought, to the untrained eye, it might appear that you have attention deficit disorder, or ADD. Yet, in reality, this could be one of the symptoms of depression.

2. Being a Pain in the Neck

Another uncommon symptom of depression is irritability. Have you ever been told that you’re really grumpy and hard to be around? Or do you know someone that always seems to be in a foul mood?

While that cause may be stress or personal issues, another reason can be depression. This is especially a problem for older men. What may seem like grumpiness or irritability is really a cover for deeper emotions connected to depression.

3. Difficulty Making a Choice

Indecisiveness is also a lesser-known depression symptom. That’s because when you have depression, your brain’s cognitive abilities are diminished.

Your mind is carrying this extra burden that impairs its ability to function effectively. Depression slows your thinking and processing. And, in turn, that makes it much more difficult to make decisions.

4. Change in Appetite

While not a very common symptom, appetite changes due to depression have understandable reasons.

On the one hand, you may feel less hungry and thus eat less food. A reason for this is that depressed people also report having less energy. Thus, cooking and preparing meals, especially healthy ones, can become more difficult. On the other hand, some people may eat more. Though, they often don’t do this to satisfy their hunger, but instead, they are fulfilling an emotional need.

5. Unexplained Physical Pain

One important depression symptom that often gets overlooked is any kind of unexplained physical pain. When you think of depression, you may imagine that it only affects the mind. Yet, the mind and the body are connected in ways that are not completely understood.

Often, emotional issues such as depression manifest themselves as body aches and pains. When you see a doctor, they might miss this link. That’s because they are usually just focused on the physical symptoms you are experiencing. Medication may alleviate the pain for a while, yet, the true cause remains untreated.

6. Sleep Problems

Oversleeping and under-sleeping are both misconstrued symptoms associated with depression. If you are consistently oversleeping, some may think that you’re simply lazy. And if you are not getting enough sleep, perhaps you are filling the time with watching TV, playing video games, etc.

In either case, on top of not truly feeling rested, you may feel judged for something that could be out of your control. And that certainly doesn’t help with solving your depression.

7. Poor Hygiene

Finally, poor hygiene is often one of those overlooked symptoms of depression. This too can be linked with having low energy, as well as a lack of interest in everyday activities.

With depression, even doing simple grooming tasks, such as showering, can seem very hard to accomplish. Unfortunately, that may also cause others who don’t understand what’s truly happening to you to judge you. From their point of view, you smell and have let yourself go.

Clearly, uncommon depression symptoms can often cause people to misunderstand what you’re struggling with. All they see is what’s on the surface: the poor hygiene, the indecisiveness, the irritability, etc. However, what you are really struggling with may lie much deeper.

If you believe that you might have depression, don’t hesitate to contact us. We would like to help you get to the bottom of the matter and provide the support you need.

Author

Joshua Howell, MS, LPC, NCC, AADC, ICAADC, SAP, SAE

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