Chemical Depression May Be Why You Feel Sad All The Time, Even Though Your Life Is Good

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sad woman in bed

Are you feeling sad all the time, even though your life is good?

Do you feel like you have everything that you want in your life, but still you feel like you are carrying a 100 lb. weight on your back?

Do you have zero interest in anything? Is sleeping the only thing you want to do?

I'm not a doctor, but I can tell you that I used to feel that way all the time. I lived with this overwhelming sense of hopelessness and dread.

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Life can be hard to manage when you constantly feel depressed.

I tried to be a good parent, but keeping my energy up was close to impossible. I tried to be a great wife, but my irritability prevented that from happening. I had a great job, but my performance suffered.

This went on for years. Years!

I thought that I was managing it, and I was... Until I wasn’t.

One day when I was 42 years old, I found myself in a closet banging my head against the wall with no idea what was going on.

A friend of mine scooped me up off the floor and took me to see a psychiatrist, who diagnosed me with chemical depression. He sent me off with some medication and instructions to follow up with a therapist.

That day changed my life.

Brain chemistry may be the culprit for your sadness.

Chemical depression is a disease caused by a chemical imbalance in your brain, which creates depressive symptoms without anyhing actually being wrong.

The way I was feeling was not because of some personal weakness, but because my brain chemistry was letting me down. And when treated, I started enjoying my great life!

If you're feeling sad all the time, then you, too, could be chemically depressed.

Here are 5 ways to start tackling chemical depression that leads to feeling sad all the time. 

1. Ask yourself a few questions.

A good way to get a sense of whether or not you're chemically depressed is to ask yourself some questions.

Are you living with feelings of sadness, tearfulness, emptiness, or hopelessness? Are you more irritable than usual?

Have you lost interest in things that used to make you happy? Are you not sleeping as well as you used to?

Have your sleep patterns changed? Are you spending more time in bed? Have your eating patterns changed? Have you lost or gained weight?

Are you more anxious than you used to be? Do you struggle with feelings of worthlessness?

Do you have a hard time focusing? Do you think about committing suicide?

Do you have new physical problems, like headaches or backaches?

If you answered "yes" to any or all of these questions, you're most likely suffering from chemical depression.

Now, ask yourself if this has happened to you before? How regularly? Does anyone else in your family struggle with depression?

Were there any traumatic experiences in your life that might have affected you deeply?

If the answer is still "yes," then you're most likely suffering from chemical depression.

2. Don’t be embarrassed.

Many people who are diagnosed with chemical depression are embarrassed that they can’t just "suck it up." They might feel as though they have some kind of personal deficiency that makes them weak in the face of this perceived disease.

You're not weak. You're not lacking something others have that prevents you from "sucking it up." You're actually incredibly brave for facing this issue head-on.

Again, chemical depression is a disease caused by a chemical imbalance — the same as heart disease and thyroid disease.

Chemical depression is perceived by many in society to be a personal weakness. How can you feel sad all the time when your life is good?

Luckily, more and more people are speaking up about living with mental illness.

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More and more people — including many famous people — are being honest about living well with their condition, helping to eliminate the stigma about mental illness.

So, join the celebrities. Don’t be embarrassed. Chemical depression is not something that you could have prevented. But it is something you can deal with.

3. See your primary care doctor immediately.

It's important to reach out to your primary care doctor as soon as possible and tell them about your symptoms. Seeking medical help is the key to dealing with depression.

Many primary care physicians are knowledgeable about the treatment of depression and can help you with treatment right away.

Some primary care doctors might refer you to a psychiatrist who can help you diagnose and manage your depression.

Don't think that your doctor is going to judge you for your depression. Doctors are trained to take care of people without judgment.

If you had a thyroid issue, would you be embarrassed to see your doctor? No.

Don’t let the fear that you're going to be judged prevent you from reaching out for help, because help is what you need right now to feel better!

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4. Stick to your treatment.

This is key to dealing with chemical depression.

I have a client who saw her doctor because she was feeling sad and the doctor gave her a prescription for an anti-depressant. She took it, and over the course of a month, she started feeling better.

After six months, she was feeling great — so she went off it. But three months later, she found herself sad again and wondering why.

I have another client who was prescribed an anti-depressant that made her tired. Instead of going back to the doctor to see about another option, that client just stopped taking her meds.

Without treatment, her depression got worse and her life got more difficult. Eventually, she did go back to the doctor and they got her on something that has made her life much happier.

So, stick to your treatment. Continue taking your meds. And if you don’t like the side effects, go back and get something different. There are many treatment options out there for you.

5. Surround yourself with people who love you.

Many people who suffer from chemical depression tend to isolate themselves from friends and family. Making the effort to spend time with people and to pretend to enjoy themselves is just too much. So, they don’t.

Unfortunately, isolating is one of the worst things that you can do when you are feeling depressed.

Staying home, eating ice cream, sleeping, and feeling hopeless is not going to help you get past this dark place, as much as doing those things feel great right now.

So, make an effort to get yourself out there and spend time with people who love you.

Spending time with people who make you laugh, keep you out of your head, and make you feel good about yourself is very important in managing your clinical depression.

Asking myself why I was feeling sad all the time even though my life was good changed my life.

Once I learned the signs of chemical depression, it helped me understand that it's possible to be depressed even when things are good.

So, ask yourself the questions listed above. If you find yourself answering "yes" to those questions, reach out and get some help.

Don’t be embarrassed — many people struggle with this and getting help is the brave thing to do.

Also, make sure to take care of yourself and surround yourself with people who love you, no matter how hard it seems.

You, like millions of other people, can have a full and happy life living with chemical depression. All you need to do is to pick up the phone and call your doctor.

Do it today!

RELATED: 7 Surprising Things That Make Your Depression Even Worse

Mitzi Bockmann is an NYC-based, certified life and love coach. Let her help you find, and keep, love in this crazy world in which we live. Email her at mitzi@letyourdreamsbegin.com and get started!

This article was originally published at Let Your Dreams Begin. Reprinted with permission from the author.