How To Talk To Your Doctor About Depression?

Last updated by Katie M.

Do you have no energy, trouble sleeping, no appetite and a feeling of apathy? Then you may be suffering from depression. You shouldn’t be alone in this distress. You need to talk about it, and as your general practitioner (GP) is often the first person you talk to, he or she will be able to make a diagnosis and suggest treatment. Yes, but how do you talk to your doctor about it? How do you put into words the unhappiness that’s eating away at you?

How To Talk To Your Doctor About Depression?

Depression is common. It’s estimated that one in ten people experience depression in a year. If not treated properly, depression can quickly become disabling. If talking to your GP about depression seems difficult, you should know that they’re the best placed to find the right treatment for you.

>>> Discover the symptoms of depression

How do I tell my doctor I’m depressed?

Seek help as soon as possible

Not really sure if you’re suffering from depression, so you’re waiting before you see your GP? You shouldn’t delay it. The sooner you talk about your unhappiness, the sooner you’ll have a diagnosis and your treatment will be quicker and easier. When you make your appointment, ask your doctor to give you more time to talk. This way, you won’t feel rushed. Finally, it’s important that your doctor understands how you feel. Talk about the impact on your daily life with your partner, your children, at work, cry if it makes you feel better, etc. In short, give them all the information they need to make a sound diagnosis.

Let yourself go

In your GP’s surgery, there’s just one thing to remember: let yourself go and don’t be ashamed. Your GP is a professional ready to listen to anything, so you can break down and let yourself go in the surgery.

  • Speak freely, your doctor needs to understand your emotional state, so they can judge the importance of your symptoms.
  • Be as detailed as possible: talk about past events, addiction, fears, depression in your family, etc. All of this will help your doctor make a better diagnosis.
  • If you have any suicidal thoughts, talk about them. In fact, 60% of suicides are linked to a state of depression.

👉 But if your relationship with your doctor seems unsatisfactory, if you feel you can’t confide in them, don’t hesitate to turn to those around you. Your close ones are an important support.

What are the symptoms of depression?

To begin with, you shouldn’t mix up sadness, low spirits and depression. Indeed, the symptoms of depression are:

  • depressed mood
  • loss of interest
  • loss of energy
  • reduced concentration
  • decreased self-esteem
  • a feeling of guilt
  • dark thoughts and suicidal behaviors
  • sleeping disorders
  • loss of appetite
  • severe fatigue

You don’t need to experience all of these symptoms to be depressed 😟. Depression isn’t the same for everyone. What should alert you are symptoms that last on a daily basis for at least 2 weeks. In case of doubt, your GP will be able to enlighten you and establish a diagnosis.

Good to know:

If you have depression, your doctor may prescribe a leave of absence to enable you to take care of yourself and/or prescribe sessions with a psychologist.

Editor’s note: Tell them everything!

To sum up, if you’re feeling depressed, if you see everything in black, if you no longer have any energy, don’t hesitate and don’t wait to see your GP. He or she will be able to help you by prescribing antidepressants (as part of regular medical monitoring) and/or psychological support from a psychologist or a psychiatrist. This is the first step towards getting better. Don’t be afraid to talk, your GP is a professional who’s used to meeting people suffering from depression. Don’t play down your problems, there’s often a tendency to embellish things with your doctor, “it’s not that bad”, and this will only delay your treatment and therefore your recovery. Be honest and tell them exactly what’s going on inside you.

🤗 Understanding yourself, accepting yourself, being happy... It’s here and now!

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Article presented by Katie M.

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