Depression is a common disorder that affects many people nowadays. It affects all age groups, males and females, although females are more likely to suffer from it than males. Stress and lack of appreciation contribute greatly why depression continuous to rise and flourish. Nowadays, depression is seen at a a very young age.
Knowing how to spot it and how to react to depressed patients is really really important. Nurses can play a big role in overcoming depression.
How to Spot Depression
There are many warning signs of depression, although some may not be so easy to spot. The following are signs that a patient might be suffering from depression.
1. Loss of interest to daily activities
2. Frequent physical complaints or ailments (Aches, pains, headaches, or cramps that won’t go away)
3. Changes in sleep patterns
4. Changes in appetite
5. Significant weight loss
6. Suicidal thoughts or attempts
*In severe cases there may be delusions, hallucinations and suicidal thoughts or impulses.
If you happen to see any of these signs, chances are the patient is suffering from depression.
Depression Trigger Factors
1. The death of a loved one
2. Relationship breakdown
3. Financial worries
4. Stressful life events
5. Traumatic childhood experiences
Caring is a Vital Role
It is far from easy to care for a depressed person. The results and rewards in the long term are usually wonderful, but in the initial stages it is often an uphill and thankless task.
You role as nurse requires patience and perseverance but it is very rewarding if results were seen immediately.
The Secret Antidote for Depression
Appreciation – This is the only antidote to depression.
Appreciating your patients on a daily basis is a great way to start helping them. They must feel that they are important and that they are capable of doing great things in life despite any circusmstances. To show appreciation you can notice the little things they did and tell them how its good to continue doing it. These are little things but it can have a great effect on depressed patients.
William James, a well-known psychologist and philosopher, said, “The deepest principle of human nature is a craving to be appreciated.” We need to feel valued for who we are and recognized for our contributions and accomplishments.
If a person takes the time to express their heart-felt appreciation for something the other person have done, it boosts their spirit, passion, and purpose. It builds their self-confidence, self-esteem and their entire self-image. It gives them the energy and motivation to work harder and do more. We all know that MOTIVATION is the opposite of DEPRESSION and the more we express appreciation to our patients, the more we save them from depression.
“Three billion people on the face of the earth go to bed hungry every night, but four billion people go to bed every night hungry for a simple word of encouragement and recognition.” – Robert Cavett