National Depression Screening

National Depression Screening Day (NDSD), held each year during Mental Illness Awareness Week, is designed to call attention to the illnesses of depression and manic-depression on a national level, to educate the public about their symptoms and effective treatments.

Depression is one of the world's oldest and most common ailments. It can have both physical and psychological symptoms. Millions of Americans are estimated to suffer from depression, a condition so widespread that it has been dubbed "the common cold of mental illness."

Even so, depression is widely misunderstood. Myths and misconceptions have led many people to believe things about depression that simply are not true. Depression is associated with many symptoms and not everyone has the same ones. Some people have many symptoms, while others may only have a few. The symptoms below may signal that you or someone you love may be depressed:

  1. Appearance - Sad face, slow movements, unkept look

  2. Unhappy feelings - feeling sad, hopeless, discouraged, or listless

  3. Negative thoughts - "I'm a failure," "I'm no good," "No one cares about me."

  4. Reduced activity - "I just sit around and mope," "Doing anything is just too much of an effort."

  5. Reduced concentration

  6. People problems - "I don't want anybody to see me," "I feel so lonely."

  7. Guilt and low self-esteem - "It's all my fault," "I should be punished."

  8. Physical problems - Sleeping problems, weight loss or gain, decreased sexual interest, or head aches

  9. Suicidal thoughts or wishes - "I'd be better off dead," "I wonder if it hurts to die."