Although men don’t commonly recognize or acknowledge their own symptoms of depression, more than 6 million men in the U.S. suffer from clinical depression each year. Depression was once thought of as a “woman’s disease” and linked to hormones and premenstrual syndrome. This stereotypical view still lingers and may be what keeps men with depression from recognizing it and seeking appropriate treatment.
The symptoms of clinical depression in men are similar to the symptoms of depression in women. But men tend to express the symptoms differently. The most common symptoms of depression in men include:
changes in appetite
loss of interest in usually pleasurable activities,
sexual problems, including reduced sex drive
Depression in women is very common. Between 10% and 25% of women will experience an episode of major or clinical depression at some point in their life. In fact, women are twice as likely to develop depression as men.
Depression in women differs from depression in men in several ways:
Depression in women may occur earlier, last longer, and be more likely to recur than depression in men.
In women, depression is more likely to be associated with stressful life events and be more sensitive to seasonal changes.
Women are more likely to experience guilty feelings and attempt suicide, although they actually kill themselves less often than men.
Depression in women is more likely to be associated with anxiety disorders – especially panic and phobic symptoms – and eating disorders.
Depressed women are less likely to abuse alcohol and other drugs.