Depression is a term that is used in many different ways by different people. Commonly, people use the word depression it to describe feeling sad, upset or fed up.
Many of us describe things, such as news stories, as ‘depressing’. We may also describe ourselves as being depressed at different times in our lives and for different lengths of time.
What are the symptoms of depression?
The word ‘depression’ is also used in a formal sense by doctors to describe a set of symptoms. These symptoms must have been experienced over a sustained period of time. They include things like feeling sad, having low energy, struggling with sleep, difficulties with appetite, poor concentration and a loss of interest in things that we would usually enjoy.
To determine what is going on for someone, a doctor will usually ask about experiences, how long things have been going on for, and and the impacts on someone’s life. If the symptoms have been present for a long time or have been preventing someone from doing the things they would normally do, they may offer a diagnosis of depression.
While some people find a medical diagnosis of depression can help them make sense of their experience, at Jigsaw, we tend not to focus on diagnosis. We support young people to understand and manage the experiences they have. We look at the things around them and what is going on in their life that may be impacting on how they are feeling. Find out more about Jigsaw’s approach to mental health.