Signs of Depression in Men
Despite the ‘tough guy’ image guys tend to portray, depression in men is a serious mental health condition in Australia, affecting approximately 1 in 8 men at some point in their lives.
Given that men may be less likely to open up about the problems they face and because they account for 6 out of 8 suicides every day, knowing what to look for if your loved one is depressed can be a literal lifesaver.
Alternatively, if you’re not sure what you’re experiencing and would like to know what your symptoms mean, continue reading our post to find out whether you’re suffering from depression. Remember, seeking help is the first step on the road to recovery. Get the help you need to live your best life!
Symptoms of depression
It’s firstly important to understand that there are different types of symptoms of depression. Certain signs may be more behavioural or physical, while others may have more to do with emotions.
It’s equally important to keep in mind that symptoms may not only differ from men to women, but also that signs of depression may vary even among men. Don’t compare experiences – simply look for the signs and get the help that is needed.
In general, however, depression is generally manifested through feelings of sadness, agitation, exhaustion, emptiness or guilt, often resulting in a loss of enjoyment in otherwise pleasurable activities, appetite and weight changes, either sleeping too much or too little, and having trouble concentrating.
Apart from this, however, depression in men manifests itself in several other ways as well.
Behavioural symptoms of depression in men
Drinking and taking drugs
Men who have depression may attempt to control how they feel by turning to alcohol and drugs. It’s important, however, to separate chronic alcoholism and addiction, from symptoms of depression.
If your family member or loved one has been partaking in alcohol or drugs more frequently and displays other symptoms of depression, it’s likely that it may not be just a binge. Alternatively, if you’ve been using alcohol or drugs in order to avoid thinking or feeling, it may be a sign of depression.
Avoiding social situations
Because this condition fills each individual with a sense of hopelessness, exhaustion, and apathy, avoiding any kind of social situation – whether involving family or friends – is usually a tell-tale sign of depression.
Another potential behavioural sign of depression in men is a sudden habit of working excessively, without taking any breaks.
However, while this may be a sign that someone is unwilling to tackle their mental health issues in a healthy manner, further investigation will be required, as working excessively, alone, is not a symptom of depression.
Struggling to keep up with other responsibilities
Men who find themselves struggling to keep up with familial or other responsibilities and display some of the other signs outlined in this post, may be down with depression.
If they’re finding it difficult to perform tasks and commitments they have otherwise not demonstrated any issue performing, in the absence of any other mitigating factors, it’s important to get them the help and support they need.
Being more controlling or abusive
Being depressed doesn’t only mean feeling down, depressed or weepy all the time. Depression can even manifest itself in the form of controlling and abusive behaviour in relationships.
If your partner has been uncharacteristically possessive, abusive, or controlling, try to see if they’ve displayed other signs of depression and guide them to getting help.
Another tell-tale sign of depression is feeling suicidal.
If your loved ones feel like life is not worth living, speak of dying or killing themselves, seem to be taking care of loose ends and are giving away possessions, these may be signs that they’re suicidal.
Emotional symptoms of depression in men
Anger is often a side-effect of depression. Feelings of frustration can give way to anger, apart from experiencing feelings of hopelessness, sadness, and dejection.
As with anger, unexplained irritation may also be symptomatic of this particular mental health condition.
Feeling frustrated is a common experience for men suffering from depression and often manifests itself in a number of different ways.
Seek help and support for your symptoms
If left untreated, depression in men can lead to serious and severe consequences. If you identify with the signs described in this post or know anyone who does, reach out to medical professionals to receive the right mental health support.