EYEWITNESS NEWS (WBRE/WYOU) — Senator John Fetterman has checked into the hospital to be treated for clinical depression. Following his stroke last year many are concerned for his long-term health.
“After what he’s been through in the past year, there’s probably no one who wanted to talk about his own health less than John. I’m so proud of him for asking for help and getting the care he needs,” his wife, Gisele Barreto Fetterman, tweeted.
Experts say that openness will hopefully give others the courage to seek the help they need.
“So many people the issues, the hard issues are initiating and starting to get the help that is needed. And I would just say anecdotally so many people that we work with, wish that they had done it sooner,” Longenecker explained.
Finding relief from depression can take time.
Risks for depression
No one knows the exact cause for depression, and why it is worse in some people than others, according to the US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.
“It may be caused by a combination of genetic, biological, environmental, and psychological factors,” the CDC noted.
Symptoms of depression
Symptoms of depression include an ongoing sad, anxious or vacant mood, along with “feelings of hopelessness, pessimism, guilt, worthlessness or helplessness,” according to the American Stroke Association.
Other symptoms include fatigue and decreased energy; less interest or pleasure in daily activities, including sex; changes in appetite and weight; trouble with memory, concentration, planning and decision-making; sleep changes, such as insomnia or oversleeping; and thoughts of death or suicide.
Treatments for depression
There are a number of treatments for depression, including antidepressant medications, psychological therapy or a combination of both. Antidepressants typically take between four to eight weeks to work, and it’s not uncommon to try a variety of medications before finding the best for that individual, Carpenter said.
“There are higher levels of care like hospitalization, which provides services available all day to help get you on your recovery journey faster.”
“Depression generally does not simply go away on its own. At least major depression does not simply fade away on its own. It requires intensive engagement, both using meds but alongside therapy and some other kinds of interventions,” stated Longenecker.
Mental health advocates emphasize that addressing unseen mental health concerns are just as important as physical needs.