June is Men's Health Month
Remembering the Mental Health of Men
Once considered a "woman's disease," depression affects more than 6 million men in the U.S. each year. Unfortunately, some studies show, the lingering image of depression as a female condition may keep men who are clinically depressed from recognizing the symptoms of depression and seeking treatment. When men experience depression, they tend to express those symptoms differently. Some common symptoms of depression include a loss of interest in usually pleasurable activities, anxiety, fatigue, changes in appetite, substance use, sleep disturbances, irritability or anger, and apathy.
There is no exact cause of depression, it's different for everyone. Sometimes the stress of having a difficult time or a combination of things that have built up over time can trigger depression. Depression is also caused by genetics, brain chemistry or hormones.
Some risk factors for men developing depression include problems with physical health, a relationship or employment, social isolation, significant change in living arrangements (e.g. separation or divorce), pregnancy and birth of a baby, or drug and alcohol use.
In general, men tend to put off getting any kind of help because they think they are supposed to be tough, self-reliant, and able to manage pain and take charge of situations. This can make it hard for men to acknowledge they have any health problems, let alone a mental health problem.
Depression is a serious and common condition which will not get better by itself.