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Looking after your mental health

What are the symptoms of depression?

On this page we explain the common symptoms of depression. You can also read about the ways depression can be managed and possible ways depression can be treated.

The main signs of depression are losing pleasure in things you once enjoyed and losing interest in people and your usual activities.

People with depression typically experience lots of negative thoughts as well as feelings of guilt and worthlessness. You may often criticise yourself and lack confidence.

How you might feel if you have depression

  • down, upset, or tearful
  • restless or irritable and tired
  • guilty, worthless, and down on yourself
  • empty and numb
  • isolated and unable to relate to people
  • finding no pleasure in life or things you usually enjoy
  • no self-confidence or self-esteem
  • hopeless and despairing
  • suicidal.

How you might behave if you have depression

  • avoiding social events and activities you usually enjoy
  • finding it difficult to speak or think clearly
  • difficulty remembering or concentrating on things
  • difficulty sleeping or sleeping too much
  • feeling more tired and having less energy than you usually do
  • loss of appetite and losing weight, or eating too much and putting on weight
  • losing interest in sex; avoiding situations 
  • moving very slowly, or being restless
  • self-harming and suicidal behaviour.

People may have a single episode of depression, but about half of people will have more episodes. Most people will feel better within four to six months of an episode of depression, while others have symptoms for much longer.

Read more about the symptoms of depression on the Mind website.

Download our mental health information (PDF, 474KB)

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