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Inflammation of the patella and other self-diagnosis
Jerome K. Jerome's story “Three in a Boat, Not counting Dogs” begins with a tragic story about how the hero read the medical encyclopedia and found symptoms of absolutely all the diseases that were described in it, except for the inflammation of the patella. If you are subject to the same effect and are already sure that you are depressed, then I can reassure you: most likely, this is not so. If you really had a real serious clinical depression, then you would be all your free time facing the wall, and not read popular science books. Well, or at least you are a heroic person — that’s fine too.
Nevertheless, a lot of questionnaires have been developed that allow one to assess the current state of mind more or less objectively. I worked with one of them at the university while I was writing a diploma. Actually, I just presented all kinds of sounds to my subjects and investigated their encephalograms, but depression can break the hemispheric asymmetry and distort the results, so I selected only happy people for my diploma (and, by the way, it turned out to be much more difficult than I thought - according to the results of the questionnaire, a lot of people, including myself, were eliminated then).
So, I offer to the most respectable public the Beck scale, one of the tests for a pre-medical evaluation of the severity of depression - in the translation version used at the department of higher nervous activity of St. Petersburg State University. The point is that in each group of statements you need to choose the one that most accurately describes your condition for the last week, including today. Before you make a choice, you need to read all the statements. If you cannot choose one of the statements in any way, then it is allowed to mark two at once (although usually such a need does not arise). I wouldn’t recommend encircling the statements directly in the book if you don’t plan to throw it out right after reading - it’s not that I feel sorry for her, but what if you want to go through this test again in half a year?
0. I do not feel unhappy
1. I feel miserable
2. I am unhappy all the time and cannot get rid of this feeling.
3. I am so unhappy and saddened that I cannot bear it
0. Thinking about the future, I do not feel particularly disappointed.
1. Thinking about the future, I feel disappointed
2. I feel that I have nothing to wait for in the future.
3. I feel that the future is hopeless and nothing will change for the better.
0. I do not feel like a loser
1. I feel that I have had more failures than most other people.
2. When I look back on my life, all I see is a series of failures.
3. I feel like a complete loser
0. I get the same pleasure from life as before.
1. I do not get as much pleasure from life as before
2. I do not get real satisfaction from anything
3. I'm not satisfied with everything, I'm sick of everything
0. I do not feel particularly guilty.
1. Quite often I feel guilty.
2. I almost always feel guilty.
3. I feel guilty all the time.
0. I do not feel punished for something.
1. I feel I can be punished for something
2. I expect to be punished
3. I feel punished for something.
0. I am not disappointed in myself.
1. I am disappointed in myself
2. I disgust myself
3. I hate myself
0. I have no feeling that I am worse than others.
1. I am self-critical and admit my weaknesses and mistakes
2. I blame myself for my mistakes all the time.
3. I blame myself for all the bad things that are happening
0. I have no thoughts about committing suicide.
1. I have thoughts of committing suicide, but I will not
2. I would like to commit suicide
3. I would commit suicide if I had the opportunity
0. I pay no more than usual
1. Now I pay more than usual.
2. I now cry all the time
3. Before, I could still cry, but now I can't even if I want 11
Now I am not more annoyed than usual
1. I get annoyed more easily than before, even for trifles
2. Now I am annoyed all the time.
3. Nothing annoys me already, because everything has become indifferent 12
0. I have not lost interest in other people.
1. I have less interest in other people than before
2. I almost lost interest in other people.
3. I have lost all interest in other people.
0. I am able to make decisions the same way as always.
1. I postpone making decisions more often than usual.
2. I have more difficulty making decisions than before
3. I can no longer make any decisions.
0. I do not feel that I look worse than usual
1. I am concerned that I look aged or unattractive.
2. I feel that the changes in my appearance made me unattractive
3. I'm sure I look ugly
0. I can work the same way as before.
1. I need to make extra efforts to start doing something
2. I struggle to do something with great difficulty.
3. I can't work at all
0. I can sleep as good as usual.
1. I do not sleep as well as always
2. I wake up 1-2 hours earlier than usual, and I can hardly fall asleep
3. I almost never sleep
0. I am no more tired than usual.
1. I get tired easier than usual
2. I get tired of almost everything I do.
3. I am too tired to do anything
0. My appetite is not worse than usual.
1. I do not have such a good appetite, as I was before
2. Now my appetite is much worse.
3. I lost my appetite.
13 (you need to answer this question if you did not try to lose weight on purpose):
0. If recently I have lost weight, then very little
1. I lost more than 2 kg in weight
2. I lost more than 4 kg in weight
3. I lost more than 6 kg in weight
0. I worry about my health no more than usual.
1. I am worried about such problems as various pains, stomach upsets, and constipation.
2. I am so concerned about my health that it is even difficult for me to think about anything else.
3. I am so worried about my health that I can’t think of anything else at all
0. I did not notice any changes in my sexual interests.
1. I am less than usual, interested in sex
2. Now I am much less interested in sex.
3. I have completely lost my interest in sex.
If you didn’t just flipped Beck’s questionnaire, but chose answer options, now you need to calculate the amount of points - they correspond to the numbers of statements. If you score 0-9 points, you are fine.
If you score 20 points or more, then we can talk about depression. This in no way means that I am trying to diagnose you. This means that it will be very good if you can find in yourself the willingness to go for a consultation with a psychotherapist - at least once, just in case. The fact is that depression is like a dusty bag, put on the head, which is very difficult to remove, because it is almost impossible to notice without help. It may turn out that actually your life is much better than you think now - just at some point, a few months ago, in an attempt to cope with moderate, but with frequent stresses, your brain did not keep balance and fell into hyperactivity of the hypothalamic-pituitary -adrenal axis, and now you suffer from it, although you are absolutely not obliged to do it.
The most interesting result is from 10 to 19 points. In this situation, you do not have depression, but you risk to please her. The good news is that it is not necessary to go to the doctor yet - you still have the strength to improve your life by yourself. And it makes sense to put it on the list of priorities, even if you have a lot of work, if only because if depression does happen to you, then the work will also suffer.
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Inflammation of the patella and other self-diagnosis
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