We all experience feelings of depression at various stages in life. It can feel overwhelming, sad, and confusing. While there are various levels and severities of depression, it’s empowering to know the different stages and signs of this common ailment. Depression is different for everyone. However, there are four stages that are commonly present amongst many people who struggle with depression. Here, we’ll discuss the four stages of depression and some signs and symptoms of each stage.
Stage 1: Origin
Depression can have countless origins, depending on the individual situation. Common origins include the death of a loved one, divorce or relationship changes, family issues, addiction, illness, or other physical or emotional disorders. This is a time when the brain starts to change, becoming more susceptible to depression and sadness. Signs include hopelessness, longing, general sadness, and fatigue.
Stage 2: Establishment
This is the stage where depression starts to settle in and become the norm. Sadness, apathy, and general lack of interest may start to become the norm. You might start to feel less interest in things that you used to take great pleasure in. Ultimately, this stage can feel like a dark cloud or a haze over your life.
Stage 3: Lack of Interest in Activities You Once Loved
The first two stages lead up to this stage, where you might start to feel daunted at the thought of engaging in activities that you once really enjoyed. The prospect of having fun feels uncomfortable or impossible, leading to inhibition around social activities, friendships, or anything you once took pleasure in.
Stage 4: Lack of Interest or Abandonment of Obligatory Activities
Not everyone who experiences depression enters this stage, wherein you start to become unable to perform daily obligations such as work, childcare, household chores, or basic self-care like grooming. If you haven’t sought therapeutic help by this stage, it’s vital to do so. At this stage, it feels as if depression has taken over your life and it becomes nearly impossible to perform duties that were once second-nature. There is hope for recovery at every stage of depression.
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