In the past, depression and mental health issues were more associated with women rather than men. In today’s society, we have grown to accept that depression also impacts men substantially, with millions suffering across the world. The association that mental health problems are more common with women, might keep men who are afflicted lingering with long-term psychological damage.
Although depression affects both men and women, the reactions to the symptoms vary. Men who suffer from depression may not find interest in what used to give them pleasure. They can also experience consistent tiredness, changes in eating patterns, problems with sleeping and demotivation. Depression might lead men to become less open about their emotions with an inclination for solitude. This can also be accompanied with feelings of irritability, aggression and hostility.
Depression in men can be more difficult to spot. One of the reasons for this is because men tend to hide their problems and find it harder to admit that they are depressed, since societal stigma imposes the impression of strength. Cultural background can also make it hard for men to express their feelings as this is more socially acceptable for women. In this regard, men are more likely to speak about the symptoms that they feel, such as being tired.
Depression may also impact men when it comes to their sexual performance. Men are less likely to seek engaging in sexual activity when they are depressed. Some medication for depression may also bring about this issue. Men who find themselves in this position can easily suspect that their lesser inclination for sex is due to a biological problem, when in reality it would be related to mental health.
If left unaddressed, the repercussions of depression may be immensely problematic. Statistics by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention indicate that men in the United States are more likely to commit suicide than women, by up to three or four times. Between seventy-five to eighty-five percent of those who commit suicide are men.
The social stigma surrounding depression may be too hard for men to bear. Some are more likely to drown their feelings in alcohol, drugs and other risky behaviours. Men are also typically less inclined to speak about depressing feelings with family and friends.
Depression can also come about with older age. Life circumstances such as the loss of loved ones and friends may contribute to mental health issues. Another problem which can plague men with depression is retirement. Leaving a life full of work activity and transitioning to a less fruitful schedule can be deemed as demeaning and sad. Such changes in life can bring about stress and loss of self-esteem.