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Screening for Depression: Could You Be Depressed?
If you can identify with any of these statements for a prolonged period of time, you could have a form of mild to serious depression.
  • My future seems hopeless
  • It is hard for me to concentrate on reading
  • I have difficulty making decisions
  • I have lost interest in aspects of life that used to be important to me.
  • I am agitated and keep moving around
  • I am always fatigued with little energy or ambition
  • I Isolate myself from others
  • I have had thoughts of suicide and/or self harm

What is Depression?

Depression is a chemical imbalance within the brain which causes prolonged periods of sadness, hopelessness and inadequacy. It is usually accompanied by lack of energy, sensitivity to pain and possible thoughts of self harm. Depression is NOT simply feeling sad or upset. A depressed person experiences sadness on a regular basis for extended periods of time. Depression affects a person's eating and sleeping habits as well as social interactions and outlook on life. Having symptoms of depression does not make you an outcast or "weird". As many as 1 in 8 teens could be dealing with a form of depression. The biggest mistake is letting it go untreated or hiding it from people who want to help you.

Self Help: Steps to Find a Happier You
In order to overcome depression fully, you must put yourself first! Take care of yourself.

  • Try to get eight hours of sleep each night
    • Depression can typically involve sleep problems. Getting too little or even too much sleep will drastically affect your daily mood.
  • Get sunlight! (A minimum of 15 minutes a day)
    • Take a walk, run or simply sit outside. Exercise is also key, whether moderate or competitive.
  • Figure out what is stressing you out, then work to gain control over it.
    • Develop plans or seek help to manage or eliminate stress triggers from you life.
    • Some stress is very normal. Find a happy medium.
  • Incorporate daily relaxation.
    • Meditation
    • Light exercise
    • Reading, watching television or simply lying down

Quick Facts According to UT Dallas
  • 2 out of 3 students who suffer from depression never get help.
  • Treatments for depression are successful more than 80% of the time.
  • Depression is known to weaken the immune system, increasing susceptibility to physical illness.
  • Women are twice as likely to be diagnosed with depression as men.
  • In men, irritability, anger or discouragement may be indicators of depression.

Reach Out: Helpful hotlines and resources