Gender alone cannot predict how someone would cope with depression. Every person is affected differently by mental illness, and dealing with depression is a highly personal process. However, depression symptoms differ significantly between men and women. Men are more likely to express hostility and rage than melancholy, making it difficult for loved ones to detect it as a symptom of depression.
Understanding some of the fundamental distinctions in the depression between men and women can help us recognize when individuals around us are experiencing difficulties.
Coping vs Symptoms
Individuals suffering from depression may exhibit a wide range of signs and symptoms that affect their mood and daily life. Individuals will frequently demonstrate coping methods and depression-influenced behaviors in addition to these. These aren’t always directly caused by the sickness, rather they are a reaction to symptoms.
Men and women can exhibit different symptoms and coping techniques. Men are more likely to be undetected with depression because symptoms are downplayed, there is a greater unwillingness to communicate symptoms, and there is a general aversion to mental health therapy.
Both men and women commonly experience these symptoms of depression:
- Insomnia or hypersomnia
- Difficulty enjoying activities that were once pleasurable
- Extreme fatigue or lack of energy
- Feelings of hopelessness, emptiness, or sadness
While these symptoms are commonly associated with depression, men frequently engage in problematic behaviors or experience issues that may indicate depression resistant treatment but are difficult to identify. These are some examples:
- Engaging in risky behaviors
- Substance use disorder
- Medical issues
- Overindulging in escapism
Unfortunately, depression can be especially deadly in men since traditional masculinity notions push men to suppress their emotions and avoid seeking help. These cultural influences are most likely contributing to the greater statistical prevalence of female depression diagnosis.
Here’s a closer look at some of the more prevalent symptoms of depression that males experience more frequently than women.
Women, in general, are more inclined to express open melancholy and may be more willing to disclose their feelings. While many men with depression may open up and discuss their feelings, they are more prone to demonstrate anger and a quick temper as depression-related behavior. Overt displays of irritability and anger are also more socially acceptable in men, which means that many people may fail to recognize these behaviors as indicators of depression.
Participating in Risky Behavior
Men suffering from depression are more likely to participate in risky or harmful behaviors such as binge drinking, gambling, sex, risky driving, and other physically or financially hazardous activities. These kinds of practices are frequently utilized to cover or divert from depressive symptoms.
Substance Use Disorder
Both men and women may use alcohol or other substances to cope with depression symptoms. Surprisingly, men are less likely than women to have this classified as an indication of depression.
Substance use disorder frequently develops as a result of depression in women, but men typically experience substance abuse prior to the onset of depression. This shows that men are more likely than women to suffer from drug use disorder as a contributing factor to depression.
Severe stress can create not only mental but also bodily difficulties. Men who suffer from depression and high amounts of stress may suffer from gastrointestinal problems, headaches, and various other diseases. A racing heartbeat, fatigue, and significant weight gain or loss are all physical manifestations of depression.
Overdosing on Escapism
Excessive escapist activity can frequently indicate a wish to escape from reality. Escapist practices vary widely, but they frequently necessitate an unsustainable or unhealthy amount of time and money. Men regularly engage in escapist behavior such as video games, gambling and sports betting, working out, pornography, and binge-watching films or series.
Impact on Depression Treatment
One of the most pressing topics for researchers is whether studies on the effects of biological sex and gender could lead to better treatment for all people suffering from depression. While each person’s experience of depression is influenced by a variety of factors, including biological sex and gender identity, discovering significant disparities could help doctors prescribe therapies or perhaps lead to the development of new ones.
Many drugs, for example, are dosed based on weight (including those routinely recommended to treat mental illness). Female bodies have a higher percentage of body fat than male ones, which can impact how drugs are digested.
Hormonal fluctuations that occur throughout a person’s life who has a functioning uterus can also affect how medications work.
When deciding on any form of depression treatment, specific events that are often associated with changes, such as puberty, pregnancy, and menopause, must be considered.
Every person suffering from depression can benefit from learning about the various treatment options, which include psychotherapy, medicine, and interventions such as cognitive behavioral therapy (CBT) or electroconvulsive therapy (ECT) and spravato treatment
If you have depression, the first step is to talk to your doctor or mental health care provider about your symptoms and concerns.
You may also want to read,