This is how depression can affect a person's day-to-day.

This story was originally published on The Mighty.

Living with depression is difficult for a myriad reasons as one experiences symptoms, including weight changes, disrupted sleep patterns, disinterest, apathy, etc.  

But a life with depression is evident in even more subtle ways. How is depression reflected in our everyday tasks? What tiny changes occur in the lives of those who have depression that end up dismantling their entire support system?


Here are 10 ways depression is reflected subtly in daily lives:

1. You stop using products you usually use daily.

A number of old lotions, makeup, and toiletries remain sealed, even after the expiration date.

2. Something smells bad.

The fridge is full of food gone bad. You promise to use everything the next time you go grocery shopping. But you don’t.

3. People ask if you’re sick.

You’ve begun to care less about your appearances and hygiene with each passing day. Having a “personal style” seems exhausting.

4. Your room starts to get messy.

Your personal space is cluttered and messy. It needs cleaning far more frequently than you can manage.

5. The barista can’t hear you.

The strength in your voice subsides. Ordering a coffee is a challenge with your soft voice. To make matters worse, you slur words sometimes.

6. You have no clean clothes.

That pile of laundry has been sitting in the corner for longer than you can remember. It will quite possibly sit there until your last favorite pair of shorts needs washing too.

7. The garbage is overflowing.

Your garbage can is full of wrappers from junk food. You hope no one goes dumpster-diving in your garbage; it would be embarrassing for anyone to see how many chips you eat.

8. You start getting behind with work.

Image via iStock.

Your school work, work assignments, and tasks are all past due. You tell yourself the next time around you’ll get on it first thing. But even you know you can’t.

9. You start canceling plans.

You are a master at making excuses for work, social meetings, and school. What’s the point in going when no one can hear your soft voice anyway?

10. It’s hard to get in touch with you.

Answering phone calls? Answering doors? The anxiety that sets in every time the bell or phone rings goes through the roof.

These are only some of the ways depression can be reflected in people’s lives. Not everyone is the same and neither is their depression.

Making changes to these small fallbacks is the first step toward confidence, self-love, self-appreciation, and a healthier, fuller life. You deserve it.

Images courtesy of John Scully, Walden University, Ingrid Scully
True

Since March of 2020, over 29 million Americans have been diagnosed with COVID-19, according to the CDC. Over 540,000 have died in the United States as this unprecedented pandemic has swept the globe. And yet, by the end of 2020, it looked like science was winning: vaccines had been developed.

In celebration of the power of science we spoke to three people: an individual, a medical provider, and a vaccine scientist about how vaccines have impacted them throughout their lives. Here are their answers:

John Scully, 79, resident of Florida

Photo courtesy of John Scully

When John Scully was born, America was in the midst of an epidemic: tens of thousands of children in the United States were falling ill with paralytic poliomyelitis — otherwise known as polio, a disease that attacks the central nervous system and often leaves its victims partially or fully paralyzed.

"As kids, we were all afraid of getting polio," he says, "because if you got polio, you could end up in the dreaded iron lung and we were all terrified of those." Iron lungs were respirators that enclosed most of a person's body; people with severe cases often would end up in these respirators as they fought for their lives.

John remembers going to see matinee showings of cowboy movies on Saturdays and, before the movie, shorts would run. "Usually they showed the news," he says, "but I just remember seeing this one clip warning us about polio and it just showed all these kids in iron lungs." If kids survived the iron lung, they'd often come back to school on crutches, in leg braces, or in wheelchairs.

"We all tried to be really careful in the summer — or, as we called it back then, 'polio season,''" John says. This was because every year around Memorial Day, major outbreaks would begin to emerge and they'd spike sometime around August. People weren't really sure how the disease spread at the time, but many believed it traveled through the water. There was no cure — and every child was susceptible to getting sick with it.

"We couldn't swim in hot weather," he remembers, "and the municipal outdoor pool would close down in August."

Then, in 1954 clinical trials began for Dr. Jonas Salk's vaccine against polio and within a year, his vaccine was announced safe. "I got that vaccine at school," John says. Within two years, U.S. polio cases had dropped 85-95 percent — even before a second vaccine was developed by Dr. Albert Sabin in the 1960s. "I remember how much better things got after the vaccines came out. They changed everything," John says.

Keep Reading Show less

We know that mammals feed their young with milk from their own bodies, and we know that whales are mammals. But the logistics of how some whales make breastfeeding happen has been a bit of a mystery for scientists. Such has been the case with sperm whales.

Sperm whales are uniquely shaped, with humongous, block-shaped heads that house the largest brains in the animal world. Like other cetaceans, sperm whale babies rely on their mother's milk for sustenance in their first year or two. And also like other cetaceans, a sperm whale mama's nipple is inverted—it doesn't stick out from her body like many mammals, but rather is hidden inside a mammary slit.

Keep Reading Show less
Images courtesy of John Scully, Walden University, Ingrid Scully
True

Since March of 2020, over 29 million Americans have been diagnosed with COVID-19, according to the CDC. Over 540,000 have died in the United States as this unprecedented pandemic has swept the globe. And yet, by the end of 2020, it looked like science was winning: vaccines had been developed.

In celebration of the power of science we spoke to three people: an individual, a medical provider, and a vaccine scientist about how vaccines have impacted them throughout their lives. Here are their answers:

John Scully, 79, resident of Florida

Photo courtesy of John Scully

When John Scully was born, America was in the midst of an epidemic: tens of thousands of children in the United States were falling ill with paralytic poliomyelitis — otherwise known as polio, a disease that attacks the central nervous system and often leaves its victims partially or fully paralyzed.

"As kids, we were all afraid of getting polio," he says, "because if you got polio, you could end up in the dreaded iron lung and we were all terrified of those." Iron lungs were respirators that enclosed most of a person's body; people with severe cases often would end up in these respirators as they fought for their lives.

John remembers going to see matinee showings of cowboy movies on Saturdays and, before the movie, shorts would run. "Usually they showed the news," he says, "but I just remember seeing this one clip warning us about polio and it just showed all these kids in iron lungs." If kids survived the iron lung, they'd often come back to school on crutches, in leg braces, or in wheelchairs.

"We all tried to be really careful in the summer — or, as we called it back then, 'polio season,''" John says. This was because every year around Memorial Day, major outbreaks would begin to emerge and they'd spike sometime around August. People weren't really sure how the disease spread at the time, but many believed it traveled through the water. There was no cure — and every child was susceptible to getting sick with it.

"We couldn't swim in hot weather," he remembers, "and the municipal outdoor pool would close down in August."

Then, in 1954 clinical trials began for Dr. Jonas Salk's vaccine against polio and within a year, his vaccine was announced safe. "I got that vaccine at school," John says. Within two years, U.S. polio cases had dropped 85-95 percent — even before a second vaccine was developed by Dr. Albert Sabin in the 1960s. "I remember how much better things got after the vaccines came out. They changed everything," John says.

Keep Reading Show less