Fifteen warning signs of potential depression

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Mental health has become the biggest single cause of staff absence resulting in 70 million lost working days throughout the UK per year.

There appears to be a misunderstanding of mental health issues in the workplace – BUPA recently found that 94% of companies have admitted that mental health prejudice exists within their business. Many staff suffer in silence for fear of negative consequences resulting in significant detriment both to the business in the role they play within it and to the individual themselves.

Depression is much more than just feeling sad. It’s a mood disorder that can severely interfere with everyday life which untreated can continue for years.

It is vital that employers have support strategies in place that are easily accessible for employees who need help.

Here are fifteen warning signs to look out for that may indicate an individual is suffering from depression.
  1. Feeling sad: People who are depressed are often exhibit overwhelming sadness and inability to be happy.
  2. Losing concentration: It becomes difficult to focus on everyday tasks which become overwhelming. They may have trouble thinking clearly as thoughts become clouded and confused and stare into space for hours.
  3. Lost interest in daily activities: Someone suffering from depression often isolates themselves socially by not wanting to or not feeling able to go to work or take part in social activities as a result of anxiety or lack of energy to take part.
  4. Self-loathing and feelings of worthlessness: They can see nothing positive about themselves and so alienate people close to them. They feel they contribute nothing to society and everyone hates them which can lead to further destructive thoughts.
  5. Feeling guilty: A depressed person often feels guilty about their condition and feels bad about the burden their sadness places on their colleagues.
  6. Fatigue: They lack the energy to carry out every day activities and may sleep for many hours longer than needed.
  7. Insomnia: Some depressed people spend their nights worrying and resort to sleeping pills or drinking alcohol to help them sleep.
  8. Irritable or angry for no reason: Their frustration with their condition can manifest itself into uncharacteristic angry outbursts which sometimes turns into deep sorrow.
  9. Tearfulness: Tears can well up at any time for seemingly trivial reasons or no reason.
  10. Physical pains: They may become sick more frequently with a general malaise. Headaches and migraines are common and also muscle pain and stiffness.
  11. Difficulty remembering things: Some people have problems remembering important information and may, in extreme cases, forget to eat and practice personal hygiene.
  12. Easily distracted: They find it difficult to hold concentration and may spend hours surfing the internet for example when they should be working or focused on other tasks.
  13. Indecisiveness: They often find it difficult making a decision.
  14. Extreme loss of appetite: May sometimes lose appetite due to anxiety or feeling sick.
  15. Overeating: Some people console themselves with junk food and eat for England because eating releases pleasure chemicals in the brain providing temporary relief which is often very short lived.

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