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How to help male partner with depression

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Editor's Note: Every Monday, Lori Gottlieb answers questions from readers about their problems, big and small. Have a question? Email her at dear. My boyfriend and I are in our early 20s, and we recently moved in together after being in a long-distance relationship for four years.

SEE VIDEO BY TOPIC: How to Help a Spouse With Depression

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SEE VIDEO BY TOPIC: 10 Tips for Staying Sane When Your Partner is Depressed

How to support a partner with depression

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Both men and women can experience depression, but the signs and symptoms can be different. Although the primary symptom of depression for many is often a feeling of sadness, men may have a higher tendency than women to feel anger, demonstrate aggressive feelings, and engage in substance abuse. Due to the different symptoms, and because men are typically less likely to talk about and seek treatment for depression than women, many men may have undiagnosed depression. In this article, we explore the emotional, behavioral, and physical signs of depression in men.

We also discuss how to get help. Read on to learn how to recognize and manage depression in men. Depression is common in men. According to the American Psychological Association , an estimated 9 percent of men in the United States have feelings of depression or anxiety each day, and Doctors may refer to depression as major depression, major depressive disorder, or clinical depression.

Depression is more common in women, affecting However, the number of men who die by suicide is four times the number of women.

One of the reasons for this could be that men are less likely to get a diagnosis of depression. Depression is a significant risk factor for suicide. Understanding how depression symptoms might differ between men and women is important. It can help make people aware of depression in themselves and their loved ones. Recognizing depression is the first step toward recovery. Some symptoms of depression are more likely to affect men than women, which could be due to genetic, hormonal, biochemical, or social factors.

We look at depression in men in more detail below. The behavioral signs of depression can manifest differently in men and women. For instance, alcohol and drug use affect men with depression more often than women, and men are more likely than women to display anger attacks and risk-taking behavior.

Men with depression may also lose interest in their hobbies and passions or feel less motivated to succeed at work. Men with depression may have less interest in having sex and might have trouble with sexual performance. Some men may find it easier to discuss physical symptoms than mood changes. However, there is a close link between the mind and body. It is vital to share all symptoms with a doctor, even if they seem insignificant or irrelevant.

Women with depression may express this as sadness, but some men may be less comfortable outwardly expressing this emotion. Changes to their emotional state can, therefore, become apparent in other ways. These differences may be due to societal expectations of how men and women express emotion. It is likely that men will be less willing to show certain emotions, such as sadness, if they feel that others may judge or criticize them for it.

Depression is a mental health condition, but it also has physical symptoms. Men with depression may experience:. Depression changes the levels of serotonin and norepinephrine, which are brain messengers that govern pain and mood. Shared brain cell pathways may link depression and pain. According to — figures from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention CDC , women are almost twice as likely to experience major depression than men.

However, it is likely that more men than women avoid reporting depression, so the figures for men may be higher. According to some estimates, two-thirds of people with depression in the U. A doctor may also misdiagnose depression in men.

Men may be more likely to report physical symptoms, such as difficulty sleeping, than emotional changes. As a result, the doctor might give them the wrong diagnosis. Furthermore, people may misinterpret common emotional or behavioral signs of depression in men. They may see anger as a personality trait instead of a sign of depression.

A study used criteria to adjust for the different ways in which men and women tend to experience depression. The researchers found that depression was equally prevalent among both genders. Anyone who notices the emotional, behavioral, or physical changes that we have discussed in this article may be experiencing depression. If this is the case, it is essential to see a doctor.

Depression is a risk factor for suicide. Therefore, it is vital that a person with depression receives help as soon as possible. There are several ways to treat depression.

Everyone responds to treatment differently, but a doctor can advise a person on which treatment may best suit their needs. Alongside other treatments, certain lifestyle changes and coping strategies can help a person manage depression.

For example:. If a person notices the signs of depression in a close male friend, partner, or family member, it is crucial to discuss this with them. Asking someone who may be experiencing depression how they are feeling is an excellent first step. Trying to be a good listener is important. Next, encourage them to make an appointment with their doctor. If they feel worried about discussing how they feel emotionally, remind them that they can start by talking about physical symptoms, which will often lead to a broader discussion about other symptoms.

It is important to be patient when supporting someone with depression. Sometimes the behavioral signs of depression in men may cause relationship difficulties. Try discussing issues in a nonjudgmental way. A relationship counselor can help people improve their communication. Anyone who thinks that they may have depression should see a doctor for help.

The doctor may refer them to a mental health specialist so that they get the right treatment. Anyone who feels unsafe due to suicidal thoughts should call or go to the hospital. If a person you are close to talks about suicide, do not ignore this. Speak to their doctor or mental health specialist or call the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline on or the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration hotline on for advice.

See the National Institute of Mental Health website for more ways to get help. Signs of depression in men may differ from signs of depression in women. Men are more likely to feel anger and aggressive feelings and to engage in substance abuse or risky behaviors. Increased awareness of the signs of depression in men can empower those with this condition to get help. Seeking help for depression is essential. Suicide is a leading preventable cause of death among men.

Major depression, also called clinical depression, is a serious but manageable mental health condition. With treatment, a person with depression can manage their condition and stay well.

People with depression can go on to make a full recovery. Long-term, it can also affect their body in ways that may be serious. In this article…. Depression can lead to a lack of physical and emotional energy, in addition to causing sleep disturbances that leave a person feeling chronically…. Depression with psychosis, or psychotic depression, happens when someone with major depression also experiences psychosis.

This is a serious mental…. Trying to get pregnant can cause extra pressure and stress in a person's life, so depression is a common side effect of infertility. Learn more about…. This may result from changes in levels of dopamine and…. What are the signs of depression in men? Medically reviewed by Timothy J. Legg, Ph. Men and depression Symptoms Behavioral signs Emotional signs Physical signs Why is depression in men often undiagnosed?

When to see a doctor Treatment Coping strategies Help a loved one Where to look for help Outlook Both men and women can experience depression, but the signs and symptoms can be different. Men and depression. Share on Pinterest Depression is a mood disorder that can go undiagnosed in men. Symptoms in men and women. Behavioral signs in men. Emotional signs in men. Share on Pinterest Early signs of depression can include irritability and frustration. Suicide prevention If you know someone at immediate risk of self-harm, suicide, or hurting another person: Call or the local emergency number.

Stay with the person until professional help arrives. Remove any weapons, medications, or other potentially harmful objects. Listen to the person without judgment. If you or someone you know is having thoughts of suicide, a prevention hotline can help. The National Suicide Prevention Lifeline is available 24 hours a day at

Depression

During Men's Health Week, here's how you can help if a man in your life is suffering with depression and anxiety. But what should you do if your boyfriend or husband is suffering from mental health problems? A key warning sign that your boyfriend is dealing with depression or anxiety is him shutting down communication. Not every conversation has to be about how he is feeling, as that can feel claustrophobic.

Many people find themselves supporting a partner with depression at some point in their lives. The support of family and friends can play an important role in the treatment of mental health conditions. Depression is a condition that affects around 16 million adults in the United States each year.

Understanding how depression affects your partner can be key to building a healthy, supportive relationship that cares for the mental wellbeing of both partners. Depression can cause people to withdraw, behave differently or become more irritable. Common symptoms include insomnia, feelings of worthlessness and loss of interest in activities. It can even lead to physical aches and pains. Living with depression for a longer period of time can take a toll on your partner's levels of energy, motivation and passion.

Dear Therapist: My Boyfriend’s Depression Is Making Me Question Our Future Together

Male depression is a serious medical condition, but many men try to ignore it or refuse treatment. Learn the signs and symptoms — and what to do. Do you feel irritable, isolated or withdrawn? Do you find yourself working all the time? Drinking too much? These unhealthy coping strategies may be clues that you have male depression. Depression can affect men and women differently. When depression occurs in men, it may be masked by unhealthy coping behavior. For a number of reasons, male depression often goes undiagnosed and can have devastating consequences when it goes untreated. But male depression usually gets better with treatment.

4 Strategies to Help Men Get Through Depression

When your partner has depression, it can affect all aspects of your life at once. While depression brings with it feelings of hopelessness, the opportunities for recovery are anything but hopeless. Eventually, it became a regular part of their daily routine. They were spending less and less time together in the evenings as he would disappear into the office on his computer and stay there until long after she went to bed. Every day, she would hope for some interaction and invite him to eat with her or talk or even to watch TV.

Both men and women can experience depression, but the signs and symptoms can be different. Although the primary symptom of depression for many is often a feeling of sadness, men may have a higher tendency than women to feel anger, demonstrate aggressive feelings, and engage in substance abuse.

In general, men tend to put off getting any kind of help because they think they're supposed to be tough, self-reliant, able to manage pain and take charge of situations. This can make it hard for men to acknowledge they have any health problems, let alone a mental health problem. Depression is a serious and common condition which won't get better by itself. If you had a broken arm or a deep cut on your foot, you wouldn't expect that to heal without medical help.

Supporting a partner with depression

Everyone feels sad or down from time to time, but this does not necessarily mean you are depressed. Depression is an intense feeling of sadness that lasts for a long time, sometimes weeks, months or years. If you are depressed, it can start to interfere with your day-to-day life, wellbeing and physical health. Men may not recognise they have depression.

Caregiving is tough. It's one thing to see a loved one in the dirty trenches of illness; it is a whole other to jump headfirst into that trench with them. Caring for a man who is suffering from depression can be even harder, because depression isn't often seen - it's felt. Many experts disagree - noting that depression is just less diagnosed in men. This makes sense considering men commit suicide nearly four times more frequently than women due to their symptoms being overlooked and untreated. Even if the data is correct, there are still six million of my fellow men who are experiencing some level of depression at any given time.

How to help someone with depression

Back to Mental health and wellbeing. Feeling down or depressed from time to time is normal. But if these feelings last 2 weeks or more, or start to affect everyday life, this can be a sign of depression. Depression can develop slowly. Someone who's depressed doesn't always realise or acknowledge that they're not feeling or behaving as they usually do.

But how do you bring up the subject? Many men have difficulty talking about their feelings in the first place. The prospect of having a mental health disorder is.

Standing on the sidelines when a partner battles depression can feel like a helpless experience. You might feel confused, frustrated, and overwhelmed. You are not alone.

Depression in men

As men, we like to think of ourselves as strong and in control of our emotions. When we feel hopeless or overwhelmed by despair we often deny it or try to cover it up. But depression is a common problem that affects many of us at some point in our lives, not a sign of emotional weakness or a failing of masculinity.

4 Ways To Help a Man Fight Depression

The best way to support a man is to let him know that you are there for him. Keep in mind, the stigma around mental illness makes it tough for a man to acknowledge that he might be depressed. Men face a lot of pressure within our society to push through tough times, bear extra weight, and be the support everyone else can lean on.

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Men seem to suffer from depression just as often as women, but they are less likely to ask for help. This information gives some basic facts about depression, how it can affect men, and how to get help. This resource provides information, not advice. The content in this resource is provided for general information only.

7 ways to help if your boyfriend is suffering from mental health problems

This guest article from YourTango was written by Julia Flood. Maybe he has expressed hopelessness or guilt. You have noticed a loss of interest in his usual activities, concentration trouble, or changes in his sleep pattern. All these could be signs that your man is struggling with some form of depression. But how do you bring up the subject? Many men have difficulty talking about their feelings in the first place.

Depression is a liar; there is no lie it won't tell. It contributes to feelings of worthlessness, guilt, and overwhelming sadness. It takes the joy out of life and makes everything feel like a chore. Depression may look different from person to person, but it has all of these things in common, as well as a reluctance on the part of sufferers to not burden their partners with their sorrow.

Comments: 1
  1. Zologul

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