Depression and Suicide

What is depression?

It’s normal to feel sad or angry for a while when going through a difficult experience. Depression is a mental health disorder that causes feelings like these on a daily basis. People suffering from depression may also lose interest in activities they usually enjoy, often for weeks or even months.


These feelings are accompanied by other challenges that may affect a person’s ability to function (at work, with loved ones, etc.). Depression can be diagnosed by a professional (doctor or psychologist) and can be treated in a variety of ways.

What causes depression?

Many factors can contribute to depression, and they vary from person to person. They include:

  • Relationship problems or breakups
  • Conflicts with family or friends
  • Job loss
  • Isolation
  • Addiction issues with alcohol, drugs, video games, or social media
  • Serious illness or loss of autonomy
  • Burnout
  • Financial problems

What are the symptoms of depression?

  • Feeling sad, empty, or hopeless
  • Losing interest in previously enjoyed activities
  • Feeling more irritable than usual
  • Using more alcohol or drugs than usual
  • Experiencing changes in appetite or weight
  • Having difficulty sleeping or sleeping much more than usual
  • Feeling useless, guilty, or like a burden most of the time
  • Feeling restless or sluggish
  • Having difficulty making decisions or concentrating
  • Thinking about death or suicide

Do you have depression and suicidal thoughts?

People with depression may have suicidal thoughts. If this is the case for you, consult the following sections:

01 Taking stock of your mental health

The first step toward taking back control is identifying what’s causing your suicidal thoughts.

02 Taking care of yourself

There are a number of things you can do to protect yourself and regain your balance when you’re having suicidal thoughts.

03 Talking about it with your loved ones

Asking for help from your family and friends isn’t always easy. There are different ways of going about it.

04 Finding support services

Every day, all sorts of people contact support services to get the help they need.

What to do if you have symptoms of depression

Depression can be treated. If you have symptoms of depression, first call Info-Social at 811, option 2, to discuss your situation with a psychosocial worker and be referred, if necessary, to resources in your area that can provide support.

For an assessment and follow-up with a healthcare professional, consult a general practitioner (your family doctor, for example), a psychologist or contact your local CLSC.

Other resources can help people with depression.

Advice for people with depression

What I'm going through...