Depression Can Drain Energy

By: Zinn Jeremiah

Depression is the most common psychological problem in the US. Estimates vary, but it's generally presumed that twenty percent of US adults are depressed. Though it may not sound like a lot when stated as a percentage, as an actual number twenty percent of the US adult population amounts to tens of millions of people. With numbers that high, it wouldn't be a great stretch to refer to depression as an epidemic.

One of the problems with depression is treatment. The reality of the situation is that depression typically responds quite well to treatment, and that depression is often overcome once treatment is initiated. While it's true that some people don't respond to certain types of depression treatments, odds are that at least one form or another of depression treatment will work for the person who needs it. This is meaningful as there are numerous depression treatments to be had, among them talk counseling and treatment with medications.

The problem with depression treatment is that most people with depression don't get any sort of treatment at all. There are certainly a number of different potential reasons for this, including the stigma that still exists about admitting to being depressed. Another reason for lack of treatment for depression however is likely due to a lack of motivation. People tend to think of depression as completely psychological in nature, but the truth of the matter is that depression also has physical characteristics. People who become depressed can become so listless that physical activity may seem almost overwhelming.

The initial reaction may be to consider a lethargic person who's depressed as being in a funk and perhaps even short-term lazy, but the correlation between a depressed state and lack of energy strongly suggests that inertia is an actual symptom of depression, not a byproduct of it. Acknowledging that a lack of motivation and will is a symptom of depression is one thing, but dealing with the reality of such a state is something else entirely. A depressed person who is behaving in a listless fashion can be a source of great frustration to people who care for him or her, and even to the depressed person himself or herself. The thinking seems to go that the person who's feeling depressed should just will him or herself into action, and again, even the depressed person can share in this sort of critical thinking.

Frustrating though it may be, it's important to keep in mind that a lack of energy and physical action is a legitimate symptom of depression. While it's true that lethargy in a depressed person can be tough for all parties involved to cope with, the positive news is that energy often comes back in a person with depression once they've initiated treatment for their depressed state.

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