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Interactive Tool: Are You Depressed?

Interactive Tool: Are You Depressed?

What does this tool help you learn?

This tool can help you assess your symptoms and find out if you might have depression. It calculates how many common symptoms of depression you have and—based on your answers—suggests where you might be on a scale from not depressed to depressed.

This tool is not for diagnosis. But it may help you find out if you should seek help from your doctor.

Developed by Drs. Robert L. Spitzer, Janet B.W. Williams, Kurt Kroenke, and colleagues, with an educational grant from Pfizer Inc. No permission required to reproduce, translate, display, or distribute.

What does your score mean?

The more symptoms of depression you have, the higher your score will be. The higher your score, the more likely you are to have depression.

But keep in mind that a higher score does not always mean that you have depression. Also, a lower score does not always mean you are depression-free. This tool can help you examine your feelings and think about whether your symptoms might be symptoms of depression. But using this tool is not a substitute for a full evaluation by your doctor. If you are concerned about any of your symptoms, seek medical help.

What's next?

If your symptoms include plans or thoughts about harming yourself or another person, contact your doctor or local hospital for help right away.

Also get help right away from your doctor or local hospital if your symptoms include detachment from reality (psychosis) or excessive use of alcohol or drugs.

Many people with depression delay getting medical advice and treatment because they believe depression is not serious. Or they think they can get through it on their own. Sometimes people who are deeply depressed feel that nothing will help.

But like other major health problems, depression cannot be overcome without treatment. In fact, untreated depression can get worse. It can cause other health problems, and it may last for years or even a lifetime. And it can have a serious impact on both you and the people you care about.

With treatment such as counseling and medicines, the symptoms of even major depression may start to improve in a few weeks. The choice to seek evaluation and treatment is a very important first step on the path to feeling better.


Current as of: October 6, 2021

Author: Healthwise Staff
Medical Review:
Adam Husney MD - Family Medicine
Kathleen Romito MD - Family Medicine
Lisa S. Weinstock MD - Psychiatry
JoLynn Montgomery PA - Family Medicine

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