Depression in men is a mental disorder characterized by 3 main symptoms: decreased mood, inability to perform the usual work due to motor block and thinking disorder (slowing down the pace of thinking, pessimistic thoughts prevail).
Despite the fact that men are much less emotional than women, and their brains work quite differently, more straightforwardly, mood disorders also do not bypass the male half of the population.
Before moving on to the question of how to help a man get out of depression, it is necessary to decide why it arose. It is obvious that the disease does not develop from scratch.
The main causes of depression in men are as follows:
Psychogenic depression occurs due to psychotraumatic situations, the most common of which is stress.
If a super-strong stimulus acts on the human psyche, or if a constant, not strong stimulus acts, then the risk of depression is high.
The death of someone close, financial collapse, imprisonment, betrayal, divorce – such factors can lead to a depressive disorder in a man. Here everything seems to be clear.
I will give an example of another situation: a man has constant problems at work with his boss and colleagues, he lives at home with his mother-in-law, whom he also does not have the best attitude, and his wife has been scandalous for several months now. Such life situations are not uncommon, – you will say. But they can also wear down the psyche of a man, drop by drop, destroying it, and lead to an affective disorder.
Endogenous depression occurs not only in women, but also in men. The cause of this disorder lies in the genetic apparatus. The thing is that some people have a hereditary predisposition to the occurrence of affective disorders, due to the presence of certain genes. At some point, such genes trigger biochemical changes in the body, leading to the emergence of affective disorder.
Endogenous depression in men almost always occurs on its own, when it is not possible to isolate a significant psychotraumatic situation.
But if you carefully collect anamnesis, ask about the presence of affective disorders in someone from blood relatives, then very often you can find such.
Sometimes depression does not arise by itself, but is only a certain phase of bipolar disorder.
Men’s depression, resulting from genetic changes, is often seasonal. Therefore, if there is an autumn depression in a man, with a tendency to repeat, even if there are psychotraumatic situations, it is necessary to think about whether there is an endogenous component here?
Not necessarily chronically bad mood is a consequence of unrest. Sometimes depressive disorder in men acts as a complication of another disease. Stroke, Parkinson’s disease, Huntington’s chorea, diabetes, thyrotoxicosis, cholelithiasis, sarcoma, AIDS are just a small list of pathologies, often complicated by affective disorder. Even such a widespread dependence as alcoholism can lead to the onset of alcoholic depression.
Typical life situations
Let us dwell on common life situations that cause affective disorders. There are some that we laugh at, other situations become a reason for sympathy.
Depression after a divorce
Depression in men after the divorce is found not only among those who became a “victim” of the situation, but also from the initiators of divorce. It’s one thing to live in a family, when the wife is engaged in the arrangement of life, there are people with whom not only to quarrel, but also to talk heart to heart, to hear the words of support, and it’s quite another to be alone, to start again in search of a new passion, afraid to be disappointed.
In most cases, after the divorce, the children remain with their mothers, and after all their dads also love, they miss, only to see children from now on can be much rarer, that’s what “cats scratch” on the soul, and even deep depression can develop.
No matter what bad things are left in marriage, there was also good there: there were moments of happiness, when the heart was desperately beating, there were words of support, there were achievements divided into two. And now this is just beginning to be missed, only to turn back the time, alas, it is impossible.
Depression after parting
Depression in men after parting, the gap is largely similar to the previous one. Men in fact yearn for not only those women with whom they were bound by a stamp in their passport, but also for those with whom they were simply in a relationship, met, lived together. In order to drown out such a love depression, a man can start to abuse alcohol, thereby worsening his condition even more, or to seek “consolation” in casual sexual relations.
Middle age crisis
It’s because a woman can realize herself in any sphere – in motherhood, in housekeeping, in career, in scientific activity. In men, everything is much simpler: the main indicators of its success are the position held and the high material income.
And if significant success has not happened? If the alarm clock is about to “ring” 40, and the Mercedes has not earned, live with his parents or the marriage broke up? This life was perceived much more optimally until the age of 25-30, it seemed that there was still “a car and a small cart”, as well as chances, and there are much fewer opportunities in the region of 40 years, and all the defeats are felt much more sharply. Here you have depression in middle-aged men.
Depression in youth
Depression in young men can also develop. It’s not always possible to find the right path in life right away. Some men try their best to provide a wife, children, take care of housing, buy a car. But not always it turns out.
It seems that there is education, and a head on the shoulders, but the person gets to a certain job, and there, no matter how you turn, do not try, and the salary is small, not commensurate with the overstated requirements. This is especially common in state structures. And to leave such work is scary, but suddenly you will not be able to find a new job at once. And there are no special prospects.
The last straw can be parting with a beloved (or even not very) a woman, which further worsens self-esteem.The most important thing at the same time – in time to understand that a person is in a state of depression, help her overcome, so that the disease does not go into a chronic form (dysthymia).
Depression after the birth of a child
Probably, everything is heard about postpartum depression in women. Childbirth, a change in the hormonal background, a new role – everything is clear.
But postpartum depression in men can also develop. And what is there to be surprised at? After all, changes at the social, psychological level will affect the whole family as a whole.
After the birth of a child, many women push the man to the second, .. the fifth plan, after the baby, cooking, washing, cleaning … But the man also needs time to get used to the new role of the father, to realize all responsibility, to feel it. Yes, and its own selfishness is not always immediately drowned out.
Wise wives in such cases try to devote time not only to the kid, but also to the husband. And if the situation in the family is very tense, affective disorder can develop not only in women, but also in men.
How is depression manifested in men?
Symptoms of depression in men can be divided into basic and secondary.
The main signs of depression in men:
– Hypothyroidism – low mood;
– Motor inhibition – a man seems to be trying to do something, but he does not have enough strength, he quickly gets tired, everything “falls from his hands”;
– The rate of thinking slows down, the concentration of attention worsens – and it becomes harder to absorb new information, and to assess the current situation, and make the necessary decision.
In addition, there are additional symptoms of depression, which include:
– a decrease in interest in things that were previously interesting to this man;
– Insomnia – most often there are difficulties with falling asleep and early awakening;
– worsening of appetite;
– weight loss;
– a marked deterioration in self-esteem;
– more serious condition in the morning hours;
– a marked decrease in sexual desire;
– excessive, and sometimes inadequate feelings of guilt or self-condemnation;
– suicidal thoughts and even attempts.
Diagnosis of a depressed state
Diagnosis of depression in men should be carried out by a specialist – a psychiatrist or a psychotherapist. The doctor will definitely specify what exactly disturbs a person, violates his normal vital activity.
In order to determine what symptoms of a mental disorder are present in a particular person, their severity, the expert will ask a series of questions, can give some tasks or offer tests.
In addition, the psychiatrist necessarily evaluates the appearance of a person, his speech, facial expressions, manner of behavior and many other aspects important for the diagnosis.
Consequences of depression
The consequences of an affective disorder can be truly fatal. After all, not always men talk about their problems to someone, they suffer, suffer from manifestations of the disease. And sometimes, under the influence of painful experiences can even commit suicide in depression.
My acquaintances had a situation where a superficially successful, healthy, wealthy man with a strong family, for no apparent reason committed suicide. And only after, when close people began to recall the last weeks of his life, to describe his condition, they realized that he was in a state of depression.
Modern society is so organized that it is customary to consider what financial costs a disease can bring. We are talking about paying for invalidity sheets, and about the cost of medications, and about how much everything useful could be done by a person at a time when he was ill. So depression is one of the most unprofitable diseases. After all, a person is actually alive and well, but can not work at full strength, is deeply unhappy.
What to do with depression?
Almost half the case we have already done: figured out what causes depressive disorders in men, what symptoms are typical for them. Now let’s move on to the most important question: how to deal with depression in men?
We knowingly dwelled in detail on the main causes of depression. This is something to eliminate which it is necessary to direct efforts first! If there is an obvious problem that acts as the cause of a depressive disorder, it is necessary to try to solve it.
For example, a man has very complicated relationships at work, his salary is low, his wife constantly expresses his displeasure because of this. What to do? It is necessary to think about whether the game is worth the candle. Is this the thing you dreamed of doing all your life? Do you see any prospects in this industry? Do you want to do the same in 10, 20 years? If not, then it is necessary to take a small time-out, get courage and try to start everything from the beginning, but only in another place, at another company or even in another country.
How to get a man out of depression if there is a problem in the relationship with a woman?
In order to solve the problem of interpersonal relations, it is necessary that both people go to meet each other, did a step (ten, hundred), tried to find a compromise. In words it is easy to do, but in real life there can be difficulties.
In this case, one of the best ways to solve the problem is to contact a psychotherapist or psychologist, together. Yes, I do not want to interfere with an outsider in their problems, talk about their grievances, but try to keep the family needed! After all, a specialist will not just take the side of someone, but contribute to the search for a compromise that satisfies both of the partners.
If the depression is shallow, then after removing the psychotraumatic situation, after a while the mental state of the man will improve. In one of my previous articles, I have already described effective ways to help you get out of the depression yourself. But I want to warn you immediately: they are all effective for mild depressive disorders, but if the situation has gone far, it is necessary to pass to “heavy artillery” – drug treatment.
Treatment of depression
Drug treatment of depression in men can be entrusted only to a psychiatrist or psychotherapist. In this regard, to self, to give her husband medication that helped your brother, friend, or anyone else, in any case not worth it.
Remember that each person is individual, and therefore the choice of medicines, effective dose and even the time of admission can vary significantly.
So, how can a doctor treat depression in men, what drugs will give preference in most cases?
1. Antidepressants are the drugs of choice in the treatment of depressive disorder. The choice of medicines belonging to this group is very large. Antidepressants not only help improve mood, but can eliminate anxiety, improve sleep, appetite.
The best recommended antidepressants:
Active Ingredient: Sertraline
Zoloft is used for treating depression or obsessive-compulsive disorder (OCD).
Active Ingredient: Citalopram
Citalopram is used for treating depression.
Active Ingredient: Escitalopram
Lexapro is used for treating depression or generalized anxiety disorder.
2. Tranquilizers in the treatment of depressive disorders in men can be used only by short-term courses, at the very beginning of therapy, in patients with expressed anxiety, insomnia. The fact is that the effect of taking antidepressants does not come immediately, but after 10-14 days, and in order to help a person cope with at least some of the symptoms before, tranquilizers can be used at this time.
3. Stabilizers of mood – this group of drugs is most often indicated for the treatment and prevention of depression in patients with bipolar disorder or cyclothymia. Preparations of this group not so much contribute to the elimination of actually depressive disorders, how much their action is aimed at stabilizing the mood, so that there is no pronounced mood swings both towards depression and towards mania.
4. Vitamins and fortifying agents. Do not think that only bones or hair need vitamins. Our nervous system also needs micronutrients and vitamins, mainly group B. This is why some complexes have been developed that contain all the substances in the right proportion necessary for normal brain function.
How to treat depression in men, caused by another pathology?
Most people are so organized that they want to find a “magic pill”, which will help immediately cure the existing ailments. Some think that it is antidepressants that are a panacea that will help in a short time to improve mood, return to the former theme of life. But not everything is so simple, you can not always immediately find that “tablet”, which will immediately help.
We already mentioned earlier that depressive disorder can become a complication of another somatic disease, for example, hypothyroidism or stroke. If a psychiatrist suspects another disease in the person acting as a causative factor, he will refer the patient to a doctor who specializes in the treatment of this disease. At the same time, it is necessary to follow the recommendations of both specialists, otherwise one should not hope for a positive outcome.
Prevention of depression
As you know, any disease is much easier to prevent than to deal with its treatment. So let’s touch on the topic of preventing depression in men.
What to do to prevent the occurrence of male depression?
1. Lead a healthy lifestyle. Proper balanced nutrition, sufficient sleep, the rejection of bad habits (or reducing them to a minimum) has a beneficial effect on the human psyche.
2. If possible, avoid stressful situations, and if they arise, try to solve the problem immediately, so that it can not affect the psyche for a long time.
3. Take life easier. Remember: not the problem itself causes depression, but your attitude towards it. If you are too obsessed with difficult situations, elevating them to the rank of “mega-significant”, then the likelihood of disappointment will increase significantly.
4. Appreciate what you have now. In pursuit of unrealistic goals, we often do not notice what has, do not value our happiness, which is very close – health, family, friends.