Officials with Spectra Care said one-fourth of the 3,000 people they have treated since the first of this year are clinically depressed.
Depression is usually under reported because there is still a stigma attached to the illness.
Psychiatrist Ann McDowell said symptoms can range from no energy, no concentration and no appetite to thoughts of hopelessness and suicide.
It's important to get help if you or someone you know is depressed. You can contact your personal physician or call Spectra Care at 1-800-951-4357 for emergencies and 334-794-0731 for a screening.
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National Depression Screening Day (NDSD)
- NDSD offers screenings for depression, manic-depression, anxiety and Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder.
- NDSD held each year during Mental Illness Awareness Week, is designed to call attention to the illnesses of depression, manic-depression, and anxiety on a national level, to educate the public about their symptoms and effective treatments, to offer individuals the opportunity to be screened for the disorders, and to connect those in need of treatment to the mental health care system.
- As part of the screening, registered sites receive a regular, public sector, older adult, or college kit containing the following materials:
1. Step-by-Step procedure manual
2. Publicity Guide
3. Educational materials for the public
4. Multiple copies of NDSD screening form, which screens for depression, manic-depression, anxiety, and PTSD
6. Posters and ad slicks
- More than 17 million Americans each year develop depression.
- Less than half of the people suffering from depression actually receive treatment.
- One out of every five adults may experience a depression at some point in their lives.
- Twice as many women as men suffer from depression, although everybody, including children, can develop the illness.
- Persistent sad, anxious, or "empty" mood.
- Feelings of hopelessness, pessimism
- Feelings of guilt, worthlessness, helplessness
- Loss of interest or pleasure in hobbies and activities that were once enjoyed, including sex
- Decreased energy, fatigue, being "slowed down"
- Difficulty concentrating, remembering, making decisions
- Insomnia, early-morning awakening, or oversleeping
- Appetite and/or weight loss or overeating and weight gain
- Thoughts of death or suicide; suicide attempts
- Restlessness, irritability
- Persistent physical symptoms that do not respond to treatment, such as headaches, digestive disorders, and chronic pain
Where to Get Help
- Family doctors
- Mental health specialists, such as psychiatrists, psychologists, social workers, or mental health counselors
- Health maintenance organizations
- Community mental health centers
- Hospital psychiatry departments and outpatient clinics
- University- or medical school-affiliated programs
- State hospital outpatient clinics
- Family service, social agencies, or clergy
- Private clinics and facilities
- Employee assistance programs
- Local medical and/or psychiatric societies
(National Institute of Mental Health Web site), and http://www.mentalhealthscreening.org/dep/depfaq.htm (Mental Health Screening Web site) contributed to this report.