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What is depression?
Depression is an illness characterized by a profound feeling of sadness or an inability to experience pleasure. Depression differs from a temporary "down" in:
- its duration of at least two weeks without interruption (in fact, by the time they are diagnosed, most depressions have been going on for weeks or months);
- the presence of other symptoms beyond sadness and the absence of pleasure (for example: insomnia, weight loss, inability to concentrate, exhaustion, loss of sex drive, etc.);
- its intensity: depression disrupts daily activities at work (or school), at home and at play; and
- the possible presence of morbid and suicidal thoughts, which require immediate assistance.
Depression can strike people of all ages, from children and adolescents to adults and the elderly. It is important that people understand that depression is an illness, and not just a lack of willpower or sign of weakness.
Although women appear to be more affected by depression than men, the difference may be explained in part by the fact that women are more inclined to seek help than men for this type of problem. It is estimated that 10% to 15% of people will experience a major depression at some point in our lives.
La dépression, on peut s'en sortir
Source : MaSanteMentale.gouv.qc.ca
Consultez aussi le dossier « Santé mentale »
When to Consult
Protection and prevention
Help and Resources
People at Risk
Dernière mise à jour le : 2018.06.01