Depression is a common but serious disease that can manifest in multiple ways. In milder cases, you could struggle with symptoms like sadness, irritability, and anger.
However, in some severe cases, you might have symptoms such as significant weight loss and frequent thoughts about death or suicide. In this article, we will cover 8 crucial warning signs of severe depression.
Symptoms of Severe Depression
The symptoms of severe depression include:
● Insomnia or excessive sleeping
● Loss of interest in previously enjoyable activities
● Persistent thoughts of something going wrong
● Thoughts of death or suicide or suicide attempts
● Inability to care for oneself, such as eating, or bathing
● In severe cases, psychotic symptoms (like delusions or hallucinations)
Risk Factors for Suicide
In addition to depression or other mental illnesses, risk factors for suicide include:
● History of suicide attempts
● Current or previous history of substance abuse
● Family history of substance abuse
● Family history of suicide
● Firearms in the home
● Feelings of hopelessness
Are Suicidal Thoughts a Cause for Alarm?
For people suffering from severe depression, suicide is a real threat. Every year, an estimated 46,000 people in the United States take their own lives. Some suicides also go unrecognized, wrongly classified as drug overdoses, accidents, or shootings. Among individuals with untreated depression, an estimated 15 percent kill themselves.
According to the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline, warning signs of suicide include:
● Talking about wanting to die or kill yourself.
● Talking about feeling hopeless or having no reason to live
● Looking for a way to kill yourself, such as buying a gun.
● Sleeping too little or too much
● Increasing use of drugs or alcohol
● Talking about feeling unbearable pain
● Showing extreme mood swings.
How to Get Help
Because suicidal behavior is impulsive, you must remove all weapons and medications you might use to harm yourself. You should also avoid illegal drugs or alcohol as they can worsen your depression and lead to suicidal thoughts.
If you are severely depressed or suffering suicidal thoughts, contact your primary care doctor, therapist, or psychiatrist. You can also call the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline anytime at 988.
If you feel you can’t control the urge to harm yourself, call 911 or visit the emergency room immediately. You may also need to be hospitalized for supervised treatment to reduce your suicide risk. You can also stay around family members if you don’t trust being alone.