Managing depression

Video credit: Heart and Stroke Foundation

What is depression?

After a stroke, it is normal to feel:

  • Grief
  • Anxiety
  • Anger
  • Frustration
  • Sadness
  • Fear

Depression is sadness that does not go away and starts to affect your daily activities.

Depression is common after stroke. It is a medical illness that can be treated.


What causes depression after stroke?

A stroke sometimes changes the chemical balance in your brain. This can cause depression.


How can I manage my depression?

Depression can be treated. It is important to get help for depression as soon as possible. 

Treatment may include counselling, taking medicines or both.

mature man and woman speaking with a counsellor

Call your doctor if: 

You have 2 or more of these warning signs for more than 2 weeks:

  • Feeling hopeless, ashamed or guilty about being a burden
  • Loss of interest in things you used to enjoy
  • Changes in your sleep
  • Changes in appetite
  • Changes in weight
  • Feeling restless, irritable or impatient
  • Trouble concentrating
  • Feeling tired, sluggish or no energy

Call 911 or a helpline right away if you have thoughts of wanting to end your life. 

Where to learn more about this topic:

Toronto Central Healthline

Stroke and Depression

Mental Health Helpline