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Ronald R. Fieve, M.D, PC

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What Does Depression Look Like for Men?

What Does Depression Look Like for Men photoDepression affects 1 out of every 10 adults in the United States. Though depression is more common in women, the condition affects men every day. Why are women reported to suffer from depression more often than men? Studies have shown that certain lifetime events specific to the female sex can cause depression, such as Post-Partum depression, Empty-Nest Syndrome and Menopause. Outside of these factors, statistics may be skewed because men often do not report their struggles with depression. In many societies today, men are expected to maintain masculinity and learn as boys to never show weakness. Young men are raised to remain “tough”, stiffen up their upper lip and hold back the tears. Emotions suppressed over half of a lifetime can surface through depression.

Depression in men is real. The mental disorder can be hereditary in many cases, and passed on to men through generations. Depression can arise from other traumatic events, such as turmoil in a serious relationship, being undervalued in the work environment, or loss of a loved one.

The majority of men will not admit to suffering from the condition. It is a serious blow to their pride and the ideal macho perception they worked so hard to achieve. Reasons for men hiding mental disorders such as depression are not a mystery. They may believe it to be a sign of weakness, or simply a problem that will resolve itself over time.

Trying to convince a typical man to ask for help can be like pulling teeth. The danger of this issue is illustrated through the alarming suicide rate among men. Though a greater number of women attempt suicide, men are more often successful in their attempts. Men have the propensity to use more violent methods of suicide, such as hanging, gunshot, or jumping from a fatal height.

Depression in men must be taken seriously by both the sufferer and the people around him. Serious mental disorders that remain undiagnosed by professionals can lead to frightening consequences.

Depression takes on many identities varying in severity. Symptoms in men who are experiencing depression include:

  • Loss of interest in work, daily activities, hobbies or established routine
  • Always feeling tired, weak, and/or irritable
  • Unwillingness to spend time with family or participate in social gatherings with friends
  • Extreme loss of appetite or conversely, overeating
  • Thoughts or attempts of suicide
  • Inability to sleep/sleeping all day
  • Having no control of emotions resulting in angry outbursts of aggression
  • Feeling of failure and worthlessness

Reaching out for help does not make you weak, or any less of a man. If you or a loved one suffers from any of the common symptoms associated with depression, seek professional help immediately. Dr. Fieve specializes in mental disorders such as depression, and works with his patients to achieve an overall happier life. Depending on the severity, depression can be treated with medications called anti-depressants that are clinically proven to balance chemicals in the brain that affect the mental state. Dr. Fieve helps patients overcome depression through various methods of therapy, including the importance of maintaining physical health through exercise and a balanced diet.

Do not put off getting help for depression. Not only is it a danger to your own well-being, the condition affects family and all of those around you. Admitting to yourself that you may need help can be an empowering step in a new direction of your life. Take control and reach out to the Fieve Depression Center today 212-249-1600.

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