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Although men are less likely to suffer from depression than women, three to four million men in the United States are affected by the illness.

Men are less likely to admit to or seek help for depression, and doctors are less likely to suspect it. Depression in men is often masked by alcohol or drugs, or by the socially acceptable habit of working excessively long hours. Depression typically shows up in men not as feeling hopeless and helpless, but as being irritable, angry, and discouraged. Even if a man believes he may be depressed, he may be less willing than a woman to seek help. Support and encouragement from family and friends can make a difference. For more information, visit NIMH’s Men and Depression Web site.