Depression affects millions of men each year. When combined with manic depression, depression generally affects 10% of the population. Depression is known as a mood disorder, which may cause men to experience longer-lasting – and potentially more intense – emotional swings (“highs” and “lows”).


Depression is a very common mental illness that affects men of all ages. It is not just a temporary bad mood, but rather a long-term condition that can have a dramatic effect on daily life. While there is evidence that depression is a biological issue related to brain chemistry, other factors such as personality, life events and family history can also significantly impact the onset of the illness. Depression can also be a response to long-term stressors, such as living with someone who is abusive. The body deals with depression in a number of ways, but a few noticeable responses include:

• Constant fatigue
• Anger
• Irritability
• Feelings of hopelessnes
• Inability to have fun
• Interrupted sleep
• Eating habit changes
• Suicidal thoughts

Sometimes, the symptoms of male depression make it hard to understand when to seek help. It is normal to feel uncomfortable seeking out professional help and treatment, as needing help for emotional issues may seem“unmanly”.. What are some things you can do to help depression?

• Talk to Your Doctor

The sooner depression is diagnosed, the more successfully it can be treated.

• Antidepressant Medication

Roughly two out of three people with moderate to severe depression find these drugs effective. While their effects aren’t usually noticed for a few weeks, they are not addictive so you can feel confident using them for prolonged periods of time.

• Psychological Therapy

Whether it’s one session with a doctor or long-term counselling with a psychotherapist, the goal of this type of therapy is to help you work through negative thinking patterns that are often at the root of male depression.

• Diet

Research has shown that having sufficient levels of vitamin B and folic acid in your diet can help decrease the effects of depression.

• Exercise

Regular exercise improves self-esteem, balances brain chemicals and reduces stress levels, all of which have been linked to the onset and continuing presence of depressive symptoms.

If you or someone you know may be suffering from depression, take a look at the questions below from the Canadian Mental Health Association.

  • Are you tired a lot?
  • Do you have difficulty making decisions?
  • Do you feel edgy and/or tense?
  • Have your sleep patterns changed?
  • Are you unable to enjoy things the way you used to?
  • Do you have to push yourself to do even the simplest things?
  • Have you lost interest in sex?
  • Do you eat more/less than you used to?
  • Do you cry more often than you used to?
  • Do you keep to yourself a lot?
If you answered “yes” to more than a few of these questions and have experienced those feelings for a prolonged period of time, consider talking to someone that you trust such as a family member, close friend, counsellor or a medical professional such as your doctor.

Everyone has days when they feel ‘depressed’. A cold, grey, rainy day, might make you feel sad or ‘blue’.

A bad performance review or argument with your partner could leave you feeling a bit down or unhappy.

Managing Depression Interactive Toolkit

Depression is not just a day or two of feeling a bit sad or lacking energy. It is a significant mood disorder that can negatively impact your day-to-day life. This guide will help you understand what depression means and how to overcome it.

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