Mental health diagnoses can only be made in-person, after a diagnostician thoroughly reviews a clients history and assesses their current symptoms. Symptoms of depression include feeling sad and lonely, having suicidal thoughts, feeling as though you are a burden to others, and having low self-confidence.
It is interesting that you asked the question “how will I know if I am depressed?” It may seem counterintuitive but many people who are depressed have difficulty recognizing their own symptoms. There are plenty of screening tests on the Internet, but they are not diagnostically significant. Your best option is to consult a mental health professional. They are trained to recognize and treat depression.
People with depression commonly say that they no longer feel like themselves. They will often describe not wanting to get out of bed, not having energy and preferring to be alone. Feelings of inferiority are also common.
Untreated depression can significantly hinder your daily functioning. You should not ignore your symptoms. Depression is a highly treatable condition. You should consult your primary care physician or a psychotherapist to determine if you have depression. After an evaluation, they will suggest either medication and/or psychotherapy. Many people have successfully eradicated depression from their lives. If you’re willing to seek treatment, you should expect the same, positive outcome. Please take care.
Dr. Kristina Randle