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January 29, 2010

Know the signs

Know the Signs

Someone who is depressed has feelings of sadness or anxiety that last for weeks at a time, according to the Centers for Disease Control. He or she may also experience:

- Feelings of hopelessness and/or pessimism

- Feelings of guilt, worthlessness, and/or helplessness

- Irritability, restlessness

- Loss of interest in activities or hobbies once pleasurable

- Fatigue and decreased energy

- Difficulty concentrating, remembering details, and making decisions

- Insomnia, early-morning wakefulness, or excessive sleeping

- Overeating, or appetite loss

- Thoughts of suicide, suicide attempts

- Persistent aches or pains, headaches, cramps, or digestive problems that do not get better, even with treatment

Seek help quickly if you or a friend are experiencing depression or anxiety, experts say. For most adults, symptoms improve when treated with antidepressant drugs, psychotherapy or both.

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