Are you suffering from crippling depression? Find out.
There are two kinds of situations or experiences that leave us devastated. One lasts for only a short period of time which is generally a week or two. We are able to come out of it pretty soon. The other one though takes quite a long period of time to get rid of. This one is generally caused by a loss, such as the death of a loved one or a medical condition. This condition is called Crippling Depression.
What is Crippling Depression?
Crippling depression is just another name for clinical depression. But why use the word crippling? The word crippling was used to stress on the fact that this kind of depression can have such an effect that it hampers the basic functioning of an individual including the ability to live and work normally. If you are suffering from this kind of depression, you will be unable to carry on with your daily life. It brings your life to a complete full stop.
Sometimes it takes months for a patient to get out of crippling depression. For not so lucky patients, who try to resist the curing process the struggle becomes lifelong.
What are the symptoms of crippling depression?
Crippling depression can be easy to detect depending on the stage the patient is in. The symptoms include severe depressed mood, loss of interest in daily activities and feelings of hopefulness, anxiety, loneliness, worthlessness etc.
If crippling depression is not treated, it can lead to a lifelong struggle for the patient. A struggle that keeps getting worse with each passing day. This may lead to having suicidal thoughts as well.
Here are some of the other symptoms of crippling or clinical depression
- Overeating or complete loss of appetite: It is not the general kind of overeating or loss of appetite that we see with many people. This one is different. If you are the person who had normal eating behaviour and appetite and suddenly it changes, then it might be a taken as a symptom of clinical depression.
- Decreased energy levels and fatigue: If you are suffering from crippling depression then the chances are that you must be experiencing low energy levels. Irrespective of time of the day, you feel quite fatigued and exhausted.
- Loss of interest in activities that used to be pleasurable: This is one of the biggest signs of crippling depression. Someone who loves football suddenly loses all interest in playing. Someone who used to love painting suddenly starts hating the paint brush.
- Inability to concentrate or remember details: When suffering from crippling depression, you are so engrossed with your own thoughts of self pity that you forget how it felt to concentrate. You start forgetting details of things, you start forgetting names of people you meet. Basically, you start forgetting things that otherwise would have been on top of your mind.
- Insomnia, early morning wakefulness, excessive sleeping: Ever got up early in the morning with a feeling of anxiety? A feeling that makes you feel sad early in the morning. This is a direct symptom of crippling depression. The other symptoms accompanying this are insomnia and excessive sleeping. With insomnia, how much ever you try to sleep early, you are unable to do so. You keep rolling in the bed for hours trying very hard to sleep. But it never happens. Excessive sleeping is the one, when you keep sleeping throughout the day. You don’t feel like getting up and sleeping continuously feels like the only escape route from your misery.
- Guilt feelings accompanied by feelings of worthlessness and hopelessness: This is the stage of self pity. You start blaming yourself for everything bad that has happened to you and your dear ones. You begin to feel that you are a waste of oxygen on the planet and you make an enemy of something that you had always liked – hope.
- Anxious most of the time: With depression, you are anxious most of the time. You tend to ponder about the future. You tend to try controlling your future and of people around you. This is because of anxiety. You cannot wait for something to finish. You want to see results as soon as possible.
- Body pain, digestive problems: Most of the people don’t know about this, but body pain and digestive problems can be consequences of clinical depression. With depression, one encounters anxiety and with anxiety problems with digestion begin to occur. When you are anxious, your body’s natural defense mechanism of fight or flight kicks in which directly affects the digestive process and other body functions.
- Thoughts of committing suicide: This is the most extreme result of crippling depression. The thought of ending all your misery once and for all. Most of the time, the idea of committing suicide kicks in because you start thinking that once you are dead, all the people who had hurt you will start regretting what they did to you. You think that they will start missing you. These feelings make people contemplate suicide.
How to get rid of crippling depression?
The treatment for depression comprises of self help, counseling and medically prescribed drugs. It again depends on what level of depression you are suffering from.
Some of the ways to treat depression are
- Physical exercise: A sound body is very important for a sound mind. We have heard that adage since time immemorial. And indeed it is true. There is evidence that physical exercise can help treat mild depression.
- Self-help groups: Talking to someone can help in a great way to get rid of your depression. It can be a friend or a relative or for that matter an expert. Talking and letting go of your feelings helps in starting over with a new perspective.
- Counseling: Counselling is the kind of therapy that helps you find out the problems behind your depression. The counselors help you with the solutions for those problems.
- Cognitive behavioral therapy: Cognitive behavioral therapy helps you understand how your thoughts and behavior have been affecting you. If finds out how certain experiences in your past has shaped you. It treats you by concentrating on how you can overcome that to think and feel differently in the present.
- Interpersonal therapy: Interpersonal therapy, as the name suggests, focuses on your relationship problems and also on bereavement. Relationship problems and a loss of a dear one are major causes of clinical depression. So this therapy allows you to accept the reality and slowly get out of it.
- Psychodynamic therapy: In this type of therapy, a psychoanalytic therapist will ask you to tell whatever is going on in your mind, without any filtration. This will help you analyze hidden meanings and patterns behind what you generally do or say.
- Antidepressants: Antidepressants are used to treat the symptoms of depression. Most people suffering from mild to severe depression are able to treat it using these antidepressants. However, an antidepressant that works for you may not work for somebody else. These antidepressants are prescribed by your doctor after closely examining you.
If you are suffering from depression of any kind, be it mild or be it major, one thing that you should always remember that it can be treated. You can get well, you can get out of it. You just have to try.