|Posted on 1 July, 2020 at 19:30|
Written by Jessica Parker (June 2020)
Mental illness is extremely common. According to the Black Dog Institute one in five Australians aged 16-85 experience a mental illness in any year. However, studies have shown that a large proportion of men do not seek treatment for mental health issues.
Although men and women both experience depression, their symptoms can sometimes be different. Men who are depressed often appear to be angry, irritable, or aggressive rather than sad and therefore those around them including doctors may not recognise the anger as depression. Men have also been found to be less likely than woman to recognise and talk about the depression symptoms in themselves.
So how can we recognise symptoms of depression in men? Of course, as we know everyone is different and different men may experience depression symptoms differently, but some common symptoms of depression in men include:
• Anger, irritability, or aggressiveness
• Feeling anxious, restless or ‘on edge’
• Loss of interest in work, family, or leisure activities
• Feeling down, flat, empty, or hopeless
• Difficulty concentrating or being forgetful
• Feeling tired, difficulty sleeping, or sleeping too much
• Overeating or not wanting to eat
• Thoughts of suicide
• Physical aches, headaches, or digestive problems
• A need for alcohol or drugs
• Engaging in high risk activities
• Failing to meet deadlines at work or inability to meet family responsibilities
• Withdrawing from family or friends or becoming isolated
It’s important to remember that not every man who is depressed experiences every symptom. Experiencing a few of the above symptoms may be an indicator that you could benefit from seeking treatment.
If you think your loved one may have depression, you can support him by helping him find a Doctor, talking to a primary care provider is often a good first step in learning about and treating depression. You can also offer him your support and patience.