Depression and Suicide

Depression and Suicide

Depression is a mood disorder  commonly associated with suicide. Although the majority of people that struggle with depression do not die by suicide, having depression does increase the risk for suicide.

We may feel sad, lonely, or depressed at times. Feeling depressed can be a normal reaction to loss or struggles in life, but  when these feelings become overwhelming and long-lasting, they can prevent a person from leading a normal, active life. When this happens that a person should seek help. Signs of depression may include the following:

  • Increased or decreased sleep
  • Decline in sexual interest
  • Reduced interest in daily activities
  • Feelings of guilt
  • Low level of energy
  • Difficulty with concentration
  • Agitation or Irritability
  • Changes in appetite
  • Weight gain or weight loss
  • Reduced motivation
  • Thoughts of suicide

Not every person who is depressed will show these symptoms. People differ in the number and severity of symptoms.

Most people recover from depression and lead satisfying and productive lives. There is a range of effective treatments for depression that include supportive counseling, psychological therapies such as cognitive behavioral therapy (CBT), and medical treatment such as antidepressants.

The National Institute of Mental Health has a number of publications related to depression, including Older Adults: Depression and Suicide Facts and Suicide in America.