Have you been asking yourself this question lately—am I depressed?
If you have, then you´re on the right track. The first step to curing depression is diagnosing your mood and knowing where you stand.
The Burns Depression Checklist (BDC) is a simple questionnaire but a highly sophisticated tool to detect and measure the severity of your depression.
Heads up: Don´t be deceived by the simplicity of the questionnaire.
Read each item carefully and put a check in the box that indicates how you have been feeling during the past few days. Make sure you check the answer for each of the twenty-five items.
Like any test or exam, if you´re in doubt, just make your best guess. Don´t leave any questions unanswered. Regardless of the outcome, this can be your first step to beating depression and towards emotional improvement.
Burn`s Depression Checklist (BDC)
Thoughts and Feelings
1. Feeling sad or down in the dump.
2. Feeling unhappy or blue.
3. Crying Spells or tearfulness.
4. Feeling discouraged.
5. Feeling hopeless.
6. Low self-esteem.
7. Feeling worthless or inadequate.
8. Guilt or shame.
9. Criticizing yourself or blaming others.
10. Difficulty making decisions.
Activities and Personal Relationships
11. Loss of interest on family, relationships or colleagues.
13. Spending less time with family or friends.
14. Loss of motivation.
15. Loss of interest in work or other activities.
16. Avoiding work or other activities.
17. Loss of pleasure or satisfaction in life.
18. Feeling tired.
19. Difficulty sleeping or sleeping too much.
20. Decreased or increased appetite.
21. Loss of interest in sex.
22. Worrying about your health.
23. Do you have any suicidal thoughts?
24. Would you like to end your life?
25. Do you have a plan for harming yourself?
Interpreting the Burns Depression Checklist
After completing the test, add up the score for each of the twenty-five items to get the total score.
The highest score of 100 indicates the most severe depression possible. The lowest score of 0 indicates no symptoms of depression at all.
The total score of 0 – 5 indicates no depression.
The total score of 5 – 10 indicates normal but unhappy.
The total score of 11 – 25 indicates mild depression.
The total score of 26 – 50 indicates moderate depression.
The total score of 51 – 75 indicates severe depression.
The total score of 76 – 100 indicates extreme depression.
When to Seek Professional Treatment
If you persistently score above 10, you can benefit from professional treatment. If you have suicidal feelings, you should seek an immediate consultation with a mental health professional.
If you´re score is around the mild to moderate depression, continue to How to Beat Depression and Be Happy.