Empowher's poll this week asks about our main health concerns. Is it our weight? (yes, apparently, it's a big concern and with obesity rates the way they are, it's hardly surprising).
One in ten of us chose "other" but the over-whelming leader was "anxiety and depression".
Depression is very common here in the United States. Right now, about 10 million of us are being treated for it and many more remain undiagnosed. And our lifetime risk of suffering from major depression is about 17%.
Anxiety is often diagnosed alongside depression.
Symptoms of anxiety are varied and are both physical and psychological :
Psychological symptoms may include:
◦Worry or dread
◦Obsessive or intrusive thoughts
◦Sense of imminent danger or catastrophe
◦Fear or panic
Physical symptoms may include:
◦Rapid or irregular heartbeat
◦Sweating, especially the palms
◦Flushing or blushing
◦Shortness of breath
◦Lightheadedness or faintness
◦Nausea or vomiting
◦Feeling of "butterflies" in the stomach
◦Nail biting or other habitual behavior
Symptoms of Depression are:
◦Persistent feelings of sadness, anxiety, or emptiness
◦Feeling guilty, worthless, or helpless
◦Loss of interest in hobbies and activities
◦Loss of interest in sex
◦Trouble concentrating, remembering, or making decisions
◦Trouble sleeping, waking up too early, or oversleeping
◦Eating more or less than usual
◦Weight gain or weight loss
◦Thoughts of death or suicide with or without suicide attempts
◦Restlessness or irritability
◦Physical symptoms that defy standard diagnosis and do not respond well to medical treatments
You can read more on our Anxiety page here : http://www.empowher.com/media/reference/anxiety#definition
and more on our Depression page here : http://www.empowher.com/media/reference/depression#definition
Depression and anxiety have increased in Americans in the last couple of years. The recession, job losses, home losses, loss of health care coverage and bankruptcy have strained people to their limits. Obviously, when our economy turns around, we may see a decrease in these numbers, but depression and anxiety have always been prevalent health issues in our society. Awareness, diagnosis and treatment needs to be a priority with us and our health care providers and social stigmas - and they still exist - need to be decreased and ultimately eliminated.
Why do you think anxiety and depression as the biggest concern to our readers? Are they of concern to you, or someone you love?
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