September 24, 2018

Ask The Doctor > Questions & Answers > Depression: Physical but not emotional symptoms

Depression: Physical but not emotional symptoms

Patient: Why do I experience many of the physical symptoms of depression — low appetite, stomachaches, too much / little sleeping (and if I get a normal amount of sleep, I crash and take a few hours of a nap), low sex drive and arousability (a difficulty in my marriage), and muscle aches — but by and large, not the emotional or psychological symptoms of depression? Doctors I have seen haven’t recognized any underlying health condition. I also exercise for over half an hour three times a week and walk frequently.



Symptoms: Fatigue, muscle aches and tension, sleep problems (difficulty falling asleep, even with melatonin, and frequently taking very long naps without planning to), low sex drive and arousability, low appetite, and frequent stomach aches that feel like hunger even when I have eaten an abundant variety of healthy food (despite the lack of appetite, I make sure to eat a lot).



Doctor: HelloThanks for using “Ask The Doctor” for posting your query.Depression may not always present with psychological symptoms. It may present with somatic symptoms as well. It is occurring due to an imbalance of neurotransmitters in the brain. The neurotransmitters like serotonin, norepinephrine, and dopamine. This condition can be corrected with the help of medicines such as fluoxetine, mirtazapine or venlafaxine. These medicines start showing improvement in 2-3 weeks and the illness requires a treatment of 6-8 months. During this period, try to do regular exercise and eat healthy food and try inculcating some hobby.Do meet your Doctor and get these medicines prescribed.Hope this helps,Wish you a good health.


Dr. Jimmy Obaji M.D.

Dr. Jimmy Obaji completed his residency in Family Medicine at the University of Manitoba. He currently operates a walk-in-clinic in downtown Toronto.

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