At some point in their lives, men, women and people with all sexual identities may be depressed. Depression is a serious illness that affects a person’s way of thinking, feeling and acting.
Women appear to be depressed at greater rates compared to men, according to data from the Centers of Disease Control and Prevention (CDC). But it is supposed that men in these numbers could be underrepresented.
This may be due to a combination of social and biological factors that make noticing and diagnosing depression among men more difficult. You can also feel under cultural pressure to act “manly” by hiding your emotions.
Because of this, depression with distinct and sometimes harder symptoms is more common for men.
Read about the signs and symptoms people might experience and what you may do next if you believe that you or someone you love may have trouble with depression.
Depressed men may notice their physical effects first. Depression can also occur in the body while it is considered as a mental health disorder. Many men are more susceptible to physical problems than emotional problems.
In men, some common symptoms of depression include:
- erectile dysfunction and other sexual problems such as gas, diarrhea and constipation
- Heart racing
- chest tightness
- Low testosterone
Depression mental symptoms in men
In men, mental symptoms of depression may be different to those of other genders, making it more difficult to detect depression.
The way a person thinks and processes information, affects behavior and emotions may be interfered by these symptoms.
- Unable to focus
- Problems with remembering things
- OCD (obsessive-compulsive symptoms)
- unable to sleep
- suicidal thoughts
Depressive emotional symptoms in men
When the majority hear the word “depression,” it’s a person who looks very sad.
But sadness is only one of many possible emotional depression.
In addition to sadness, men may have the following depression emotional symptoms:
- feelings of anger or antipathy resulting in hostile or violent behavior; readiness to attack or confront.
- Being away from friends and family
- loss of hope
- loss of interest
- lack of sex drive
- the inability to rest or relax as a result of anxiety or boredom.
Behavioral signs of depression in men
The psychological, physical and emotional symptoms of depression may also be behavioral. Because some men resist talking about their emotions, they are often the most apparent symptoms of their behavioral depression.
In men, the most common behavioral symptoms are:
- Alcohol abuse
- drug abuse
- participate in risky activities
- difficulty doing personal responsibilities
- suicidal thoughts
Why can men not be diagnosed with depression?
As mental health discussions appear to expand in reach and compassion, some cultural and social stigma remain around depression—particularly among men.
Men are generally socialized by society to keep their emotions, although this is not healthy, we know, Many men may compromise emotional, physical, and mental well-being in their efforts to maintain these social standards.
Furthermore, many men are never taught to recognize the less typical signs of depression than others.
Some men are never looking for help because they don’t recognize the signs.
On the other hand, some men who recognize signs may have difficulties discussing their experience because they fear other people’s judgements.
In consequence, when many men experience the signs of depression, they start working a long time or otherwise fill up their time to stay busy rather than dealing with the depression itself.
Depression diagnosis and treatment seeking can save lives. Among men, especially those who served or are currently serving in the military, the suicide rate is high.
Men are also three to four times more likely to commit suicide than women.
We can help men with depression recognize the signs by continuing to open up the conversation. Men with depression can live their lives as much as possible by seeking treatment.
What are the current methods of treatment?
Depression is usually treated together with speech therapy, medicines or both.
A medical practitioner can help you create a personalised treatment plan which works best for you.
Many men begin treatment with a therapist for moderate cases of depression (psychotherapist). The therapist could suggest certain types of care from there, such as:
- Cognitive Behavioral Therapy (CBT)
- Interpersonal therapy, or IPT,(is a short-term, focused treatment for depression)
- Problem-solving therapy
- psychodynamic therapy
Medicines can be added from there, if necessary.
However, medication may be prescribed immediately for more serious cases to help ease some of the physical, mental, emotional and comportably affected symptoms of depression. This can be the case for someone who thinks suicidally or has tried suicide.
The treatment for depression is commonly done by antidepressantes like paroxetine (Paxil) and sertraline (Zoloft). Any other medication may also be recommended by a mental health professional. Keep in mind that these drugs often take several weeks or months or start to make a notable difference. Be patient and follow the plan closely.
While recent conversations about mental health are more open and inclusive, in a society that maintains traditional men’s views many men still find it difficult to talk about their feelings.
The symptoms of depression in males, which are affected by the same social factors and male biology, can also be challenging. We can help clear the path to better, more inclusive mental health through the sharing of knowledge about the symptoms of depression in men.
Depression becomes a much more manageable part of the human experience with talking therapy, medications or a combination of these two things.