Depression affects more than 6.8 million people across the United States on average. This mental health condition leads to a wide range of symptoms, with one of the most detrimental leading to feelings of disconnection from the world.
To avoid falling into these negative thoughts, it’s important to learn more about what depression is, its symptoms, and ways to properly manage it. When handled correctly, people who are depressed can overcome these feelings, reconnect with their loved ones, and get back to a more fulfilling life.
What is Depression?
As one of the most common mental health conditions, depression is a serious illness that affects the way a person feels, thinks, and acts. It leads to negative thoughts as well as long periods of sadness or general disinterest.
Depression is caused by a variety of factors including medication, physical health problems, alcohol consumption, drugs, personality disorders, and even genetics. People may also feel depressed with changes in their hormone levels or imbalances with their neurotransmitters.
Other individuals feel depression at specific times of the year, which is known as seasonal affective disorder (SAD). These effects usually occur as the winter months come up but are occasionally felt during the summer as well.
Tragic events like losing a family member, getting into a car accident, or suffering an injury may also be depressive triggers. In general, it is difficult for many people to determine the exact cause of their depression.
What are the symptoms of depression?
While general sadness is a common sign, there are many other symptoms of depression. Knowing what depression looks like is key to helping family members or other loved ones who are dealing with this mental health condition.
Some of the most common signs of depression include:
- Constant feelings of sadness
- Sleeping much more often or less often than usual
- Fatigue or exhaustion
- Poor self-esteem
- Rapid weight loss or weight gain
- Feelings of isolation
- Lack of interest in hobbies or activities
- Problems with focus or concentration
Depression leads to disconnection in relationships
Along with the other symptoms, another effect of depression is the disconnection individuals feel in relationships with their friends or family.
Many people feel so depressed that they disconnect and start to feel numb to emotion. This makes them feel distant from their loved ones and gradually leads to disinterest or a lack of satisfaction. As time progresses, they generally feel less connected in their relationships with each passing day.
When someone with depression is asked questions, they tend to answer with as few words as possible to limit or prevent a longer conversation. In the same way, they’ll also avoid starting conversations with their loved ones as well.
Depression disconnection often leads individuals to spend a significant amount of time watching TV or looking at their phones. They typically spend their time on these activities in an effort to lose themselves in other people’s lives or stories instead of their own.
Why does depression cause disconnection?
The biggest reason someone has feelings of disconnection in depression is that they no longer care. They reach a point where they’re emotionally void of feelings for the people around them. They’d rather escape into television shows, video games, or social media in an attempt to live through others.
From there, the main concern is what to do to keep someone from reaching this point. Or how to help them if they’re already there.
How to Manage Depression and Reconnect with Loved Ones
If you or someone you love are having feelings of disconnection in depression, it is essential that you take the necessary steps to prevent the situation from getting worse. By following a handful of practices, you’ll be able to reconnect with your loved ones and enjoy the relationships you have with others.
Find or Create Joy
A great way to reconnect when managing depression is to change your overall perspective and seek ways to feel happiness. Think about past experiences that have brought you joy and revisit those emotions.
When possible, create opportunities to feel those things again by going to the place or participating in the activities that made you feel them.
Discover Who You Are
As you see the effects of depression and disconnection, a great strategy is to cope with past traumas, identify your biggest stressors, and then determine the best ways to combat those feelings. A few of the most common ways that people find themselves are through meditation, yoga, mindfulness exercises, or travel. Some other physical activities such as sports, working out, and dancing help as well.
The concept of derealization is that people begin to feel like the world around them is fake or distorted. They feel disconnected from people, work, school, and even pets.
People on a path toward derealization can stop themselves in a few ways including touching something that is warm or cold and focusing on the sensation. Another common tactic is to focus on one object at a time and clearly define what it is and what it means to them. Even pinching themselves could prevent these issues.
Talk with People Who Are Close to You
People who are struggling with depression disconnection should never be nervous or ashamed to talk about their mental health with loved ones. The more they can discuss what they are feeling or aren’t feeling, the better their chances of reconnecting and overcoming their depressive state.
Get Professional Depression Treatment
Oftentimes, individuals with mental health conditions get so depressed they disconnect from their friends, family members, and even the world around them. Proper management of depression and professional treatment are key to reconnecting these ties and finding happiness in day-to-day life.
Depression treatment programs at San Antonio Behavioral Healthcare Hospital include inpatient and outpatient services. Please get in touch with us today to learn more about how we can help you or your loved one.