Sadness and grief are normal after a traumatic experience. Sometimes people also develop negative thoughts about themselves, other people, and the world in general. These thoughts and feelings of sadness usually lift as they start to come to terms with and recover from the traumatic event. But for some, the trauma can lead to mental health issues such as depression. Depression is a common outcome of experiencing trauma.
Could I have depression?
If negative thoughts and feelings of sadness persist, participation in everyday activities like going to work, seeing friends, even getting out of bed can become hard. If this is how you are feeling, you may have developed depression. Depression is a common mental health problem, with one in five Australians experiencing it at least once in their lives.
The main symptoms of depression are:
- little or no interest or pleasure in normal activities
- being tearful
- feeling low and miserable
- feeling tired all the time
- changes in appetite, sleep or weight
- feeling worthless, helpless and hopeless
- poor concentration
- suicidal thoughts
Being depressed can also make it hard to come to terms with the trauma that you’ve been through. If you have been experiencing a number of these problems for more than two weeks, then you should talk to your local doctor or a mental health professional.