Thursday, October 6 is National Depression Screening Day. Christy Beck from Beck Psychotherapy discusses the signs and symptoms of depression and other mental illnesses.



·        Each year 42,773 Americans die by suicide

·        70% of individuals tell someone or give warning signs before taking their own life

·        Suicide rates overall have increased by 24 percent from 1999 to 2014

·        Depression is the leading cause of disability in the U.S. for ages 15 to 44

·        Depression affects more than 15 million American adults, or about 6.7 percent of the U.S. population age 18 and older in a given year.


·        Suicide is the second leading cause of death for youth aged 11-18, and the 10th leading cause of death overall in the United States

·        17.7% of students in grades 9-12 seriously considered attempting suicide in the past year, and 14.6% made a plan

·        The rate of suicide attempts is 4 times greater for LGB youth and 2 times greater for questioning youth than that of straight youth

·        Nearly half of young transgender people have seriously thought about taking their lives, and one quarter report having made a suicide attempt


·        Men die by suicide 3.5x more often than women

·        Suicide rates for men ages 45 to 64 increased by 43 percent between 1999 and 2014


·        Veterans have rate of suicide 50% higher than the rate among other civilians with similar demographic characteristics

·        Veterans Crisis Line (800-273-8255, Press 1), has had more than 2 million callers since it was established in 2007, with nearly a quarter of those calls – 490,000 – coming in last year


Depression is a treatable mental health disorder that causes persistent sadness and loss of interest. Some of the most common signs and symptoms include:

-Changes in sleep and appetite

-Poor Concentration

-Loss of energy

-Loss of interest in usual activities

-Low self-esteem

-Hopelessness or guilt

-Recurring thoughts of death or suicide

-For a complete list visit: National Alliance on Mental Illness

Bipolar disorder, also known as manic depression, is a treatable illness defined by extreme changes in mood, thought, energy and behavior. These changes are categorized into manic (high) and depressive (low) episodes, ranging from bursts of energy to deep despair. Some of the most common symptoms include:

Mania Symptoms

-Heightened mood, exaggerated optimism and self-confidence

-Excessive irritability, aggressive behavior

-Decreased need for sleep without experiencing fatigue

-Racing speech, racing thoughts, flight of ideas

-Impulsiveness, poor judgment, easily distracted

-Reckless behavior

Depressive Symptoms

-Changes in sleep and appetite

-Poor Concentration

-Loss of energy

-Loss of interest in usual activities

-Low self-esteem

-Hopelessness or guilt

-Recurring thoughts of death or suicide

Generalized anxiety disorder (GAD) is an anxiety disorder that involves chronic worrying, nervousness, and tension. Some of the most common symptoms include:

Feeling like your anxiety is uncontrollable; there is nothing you can do to stop the worrying

A pervasive feeling of apprehension or dread

Inability to relax, enjoy quiet time, or be by yourself

Difficulty concentrating or focusing on things

Avoiding situations that make you anxious

Feeling tense; having muscle tightness or body aches

Having trouble falling asleep or staying asleep because your mind won’t quit

Feeling edgy, restless, or jumpy

For a complete list visit: helpguide

Posttraumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD) is a mental health condition that’s triggered by witnessing or experiencing a traumatic event. Some common symptoms include:

-Intrusive, upsetting memories of the event

-Flashbacks (acting or feeling like the event is happening again)

-Nightmares (either of the event or of other frightening things)

-Avoiding activities, places, thoughts, or feelings that remind you of the trauma

-Feeling detached from others and emotionally numb

-Difficulty falling or staying asleep

-Irritability or outbursts of anger

-Hypervigilance (on constant “red alert”)

For a list of more resources and to access the online screening visit Beck Psychotherapy.

Beck Psychotherapy is located at 103 East Beaver Ave. Suite #2 in State College, and at 700 Park Avenue in Altoona. You can call them at (814) 409-7744. Calls are answered 24 hours a day, seven days a week.