Men and Depression: Signs and Symptoms
Depression is so frequently talked about that people often assume it is easy to tell when someone is depressed. Yet in actuality, depression can take many forms and expresses itself somewhat differently from person to person and from men to women. Thus, if you are wondering if you or a male in your life might be experiencing symptoms of depression, consider the following ways that men are more likely to manifest depressive symptoms:
- We are all prone to wanting to make ourselves, feel better. However, men are more likely than women to self-medicate (e.g. alcohol, drugs, video games, sex, pornography) when they are emotionally struggling.
- Men and women are socialized differently with regards to emotions. Although men and women technically have the same emotional range and experience of emotions, men are more likely to show emotions like anger, irritability, and aggression rather than “softer” emotions such as sadness. Thus, men may not present in the stereotypically sad way you might expect when someone is depressed.
- Individuals struggling with depression are likely to feel socially disconnected and frequently withdraw socially. This is often true for men who may be experiencing depression. You should particularly take note if this is a shift from prior social behavior.
- Our bodies and minds are inherently connected, thus, individuals with depression may experience physiological symptoms along with emotional symptoms. Men in particular may be more willing to acknowledge physical symptoms (e.g. fatigue, headaches, loss of interest in work, decreased sexual drive, sleep problems) rather than emotional feelings.
Everyone has times in their life where they feel down for a few days for one reason or another. However, if you or a male in your life is experiencing these or other symptoms of depression, particularly if they have persisted for 2 or more weeks, it may be time to see a mental health professional. To contact Dr. Foss or make an appointment, click here: Schedule