Who doesn’t get depressed and mentally exhausted at some point in life? Scientists have long debated whether the negative feelings like depression and emotional and mental exhaustion are something we are born with or are they strictly trauma related?
According to Dr. Zul Merali, president and CEO at The Royal’s Institute of Mental Health Research, affiliated with the University of Ottawa, these negative feelings are a combination of both.
Dr. Merali told in an interview to Providr: “We are all born with serotonin, which binds with the brain receptors. You can have genetic mutations where you might be born with genes that produce high levels of serotonin, or they might produce low levels of serotonin.”
He added: “Those who are born with low serotonin levels may function properly, but all it can take is a couple of stressful or traumatic events that can cause them to become depressed or mentally and emotionally exhausted.”
But the important thing is how do we know when we or people near us are suffering from depression and emotional and mental exhaustion? According to Dr. Merali, following are the signs which can indicate it.
1. Isolation And Focusing Inwards: According to Dr. Merali, people suffering from depression or emotional and mental exhaustion try to isolate and detach themselves from the rest of the world. They focus on things that reflect them inside and see social interaction as another burden that will add to their mental stress. In fact, social interaction is one of the ways to treat depression or emotional and mental exhaustion.
2. Sadness: Sadness also indicates when someone is suffering from depression or emotional and mental exhaustion. It is more associated with older people but the young ones also suffer from it when they fail to handle the stress in their lives. Such people often break down and cry in isolation over the problems in their lives.
3. Disruption of Appetite: According to Dr. Merali, depression or emotional and mental exhaustion cause hormonal changes in the body. So the hormones and neurotransmitters involved in metabolism function improperly when the body has a hormonal imbalance, like low levels of serotonin, ultimately leading to loss of appetite.
4. No Patience: According to Dr. Merali, people suffering from depression and emotional and mental exhaustion has a little to no patience. Such people often become short with their family and colleagues, because they are overwhelmed.
5. Sleeping Disorder: Sleeping disorders are a direct indication of depression and mental and emotional exhaustion. Such people either sleep too much or too little, both of which aren’t good for their mental state. They need to have adequate sleep because the medication they are receiving during their treatment (like antidepressants) will not be effective if the body is not obtaining proper rest.
6. Lack of motivation: According to Dr. Merali, depression and exhaustion are the reasons people become unmotivated in life. Dr. Merali explained it with an example, “If you are a sprinter or a runner who runs a marathon, you’re not going to feel like running once you complete it, and you’ll be depleted.”
7. Irritation: According to Dr. Merali, irritation is intricately tied to depression and mental exhaustion. People become irritated when they are unable to cope with certain things, whether big or small. He added: “When it becomes a pattern, it’s basically the straw that breaks the camel’s back. The stress becomes too much for the individual and because it has now become part of your daily life, you stay irritated because you can’t break the pattern.”
As a solution, Dr. Merali suggests that people should consider ‘talk treatments’ where they either discuss their issues with a psychologist or therapist, or they speak about them with their friends and family. In addition, exercise and meditation are also good treatments for depression and emotional and mental exhaustion.