Does The Man In Your Life Have Depression? Or Is It Something Else?

Run through the symptoms of a Major Depressive Disorder. Before you rule out the chance the man in your life is NOT depressed. Consider the symptoms of atypical depression. Also known as high functioning depression.

What are the symptoms of depression?

In Major Depression, the symptoms are relatively easy to identify because it looks like what we may expect a depressed person to look like. We generally assume depressed people to have a depressed mood, anhedonia (loss of interest in once pleasurable activities), decreased appetite, feelings of worthlessness or excessive guilt, insomnia at night with fatigue during the day, difficulty concentrating, slowly moving (psychomotor retardation), and recurrent dark thoughts of suicide.

And what about atypical depression?

But there is another picture of depression which is more common in men. This type of depression manifests a few symptoms of major depression. However, they can mask unusual symptoms. Someone with atypical depression can remain reasonably high functioning. These guys may say something like, “I work very hard and play even harder.” They may also be irritable. He could also be very critical of themselves. So they push themselves harder to “be the best.”

Overthinking everything (even the most mundane things) is common.  So is feeling misunderstood. Because they don’t look and act like the stereotypical depressed person. The type that pretends everything is Facebook fine.  This person may engage in activities and perform well. But they take no enjoyment in it and may even feel numb during the process. Eventually, this person might drink too much, gamble, try illicit drugs, or misuse prescription drugs. All in an attempt to feel something. People with atypical depression may also find themselves eating more and becoming fidgety. Finally, this person may engage in extreme escapist behavior like binge-watching TV or excessive gaming.  All of the symptoms of atypical depression are the body’s way of trying to make it feel better.

None of these individual symptoms is diagnostic of anything. However, when they are viewed in life’s context and consequence (and lasting at least 2 weeks), it may become clear that your man is suffering from depression.  While almost half of the Major Depressive episodes may spontaneously resolve within a year even if you do nothing,

15% of people with depression commit suicide (more common in men).

How significant is 15%?

  • 9% percent of the US population has Diabetes
  • 20% of the US population has a sexually transmitted disease
  •  7% of the population has depression
  •  1% of the population has schizophrenia.

15% is a very high percentage concerning health care statistics. If you suspect the man in your life has depression or atypical depression. Encourage them to get evaluated.

Could these symptoms be anything else besides depression?

These same symptoms can be associated with thyroid conditions, diabetes, low testosterone, and erectile dysfunction. A comprehensive physical exam with psychiatric evaluation can help you identify and treat the condition of concern. A thorough physical examination and psychiatric mental health evaluation can be done in the privacy of your home with a house call.

About Metro Medical Direct

Dr. Raymond Zakhari is a triple board certified (Adult- Adolescent, Family Practice, Psychiatric Mental Health) Nurse Practitioner (NP). He provides Concierge Medical House Call services in Manhattan and the outer boroughs. General #MedicalHouseCalls #PsychiatricHouseCalls (Therapy & Medication Management) #SkilledNursing House Calls Dr. Raymond Zakhari, NP does not take any insurance as he is out of network; provides concierge-style medical and psychiatric House call services. (If you have out-of-network benefits you may be reimbursed, check your plan for details).

Book an appointment here and check out the rest of this site for more information about concierge medicine.

Also, check out Dr. Ray’s Podcast The Psychology of it All here. Also available on Apple Podcasts.