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Check Yourself Before You Wreck Yourself

October 6, 2017

 

OCTOBER 6th is

National Depression Screening Day!

 

As you may have noticed, one of my favorite topics is mental health. As a practicing family doctor, majority of the patient sessions come back to our mental health. Many suffer from sadness, depression, fear, anxiety, and rejection. Yet few of us get treated for it. I can go on and on and on about my concern from this and scream it from the roof tops, but I won't. I will simply just give you the information on how we screen for depression.

 

 

 

The questionnaire below I use on a regular basis in the clinic. It helps me assess exactly where patients are in regards to their depression. I hope that if these screening questions show that you have any level of depression, that you will reach out for help to your primary care provider.

 

PHQ-9 (Patient Health Questionnaire-9)

(use “X” to indicate your answer)

Over the last 2 weeks, how often have you been bothered by any of the following problems?

 

1.  Little interest or pleasure in doing things
      ___ Not at all – 0
     ___ Several days – 1
     ___ More than half the days – 2
     ___ Nearly every day – 3

 

2.  Feeling down, depressed, or hopeless
     ___ Not at all – 0
     ___ Several days – 1
     ___ More than half the days – 2
     ___ Nearly every day – 3

 

3.  Trouble falling or staying asleep, or sleeping too much
     ___ Not at all – 0
     ___ Several days – 1
     ___ More than half the days – 2
     ___ Nearly every day – 3

 

4.  Feeling tired or having little energy
     ___ Not at all – 0
     ___ Several days – 1
     ___ More than half the days – 2
     ___ Nearly every day – 3

 

5.  Poor appetite or overeating
     ___ Not at all – 0
     ___ Several days – 1
     ___ More than half the days – 2
     ___ Nearly every day – 3

 

6.  Feeling bad about yourself — or that you are a failure or have let yourself or your family down
     ___ Not at all – 0
     ___ Several days – 1
     ___ More than half the days – 2
     ___ Nearly every day – 3

 

7.  Trouble concentrating on things, such as reading the newspaper or watching television
     ___ Not at all – 0
     ___ Several days – 1
     ___ More than half the days – 2
     ___ Nearly every day – 3

 

8.  Moving or speaking so slowly that other people could have noticed? Or the opposite — being so fidgety or restless that you have been moving around a lot more than usual
     ___ Not at all – 0
     ___ Several days – 1
     ___ More than half the days – 2
     ___ Nearly every day – 3

 

9.  Thoughts that you would be better off dead, or thoughts of hurting yourself in some way
     ___ Not at all – 0
     ___ Several days – 1
     ___ More than half the days – 2
     ___ Nearly every day – 3

 

Now add up all your scores and use the interpretation scale below.

 

Interpretation of Total Score

1-4: Minimal depression

5-9: Mild depression

10-14: Moderate depression

15-19: Moderately severe depression

20-27: Severe depression

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