Am I depressed

These screening questions and the list of warning signs show how a doctor might check whether you may be affected by depression.

Screening questions

During the last month, have you often been bothered by feeling down, depressed or hopeless?The questions a doctor might ask you to screen for depression are:

  1. During the last month, have you often been bothered by having little interest or pleasure in doing things?

Did you answer yes to both?

If your answer is yes to either question then look more closely at the list on the ‘Depression warning signs’ page. Think back over the most recent two weeks and record how often you have experienced each of the warning signs relevant to you. It is likely that depression is affecting you if you have experienced:

  • a persistently sad, low, anxious or empty mood, plus
  • at least 4 more of the warning signs,
  • on most days over the last two weeks,

A doctor would also want to assess in what ways and how severely depression is affecting your daily functioning. See the next page on ‘Changes depression brings’ for how to make a more detailed assessment of how depression is affecting you. You can also use the attached Take Action worksheet which gives a checklist for identifying how depression may be affecting  you.

Take it seriously and get help

If your answers to the screening questions suggest that depression is a factor in your life then you need to take this very seriously. Depression reinforces itself in a downward spiral of worsening mood, and can be a serious and dangerous condition if left untreated.

Remember, only a doctor or other healthcare professional can officially diagnose depression. If you are at all concerned it would be best to seek professional advice. Professionals are also best placed to help you plan effective strategies for tackling depression and moving forward.

If you have found yourself considering acting on thoughts of death or suicide, even if you have not experienced any of the other warning signs, then it is very important to take appropriate action at once. Tell someone else and get help. Click on the Desperate Right Now? button at the top for more detailed advice.

 Next: Changes depression brings

Take Action

Depression checklist

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