Distress Self-Assessment

Emotional Distress Scale (K6)

These questions provide a quick assessment of whether you have symptoms related to depression. However, no test is 100% accurate. No matter what your score is, you should speak to a health professional if you have any concerns about yourself or your loved ones.

The following questions ask about how you have been feeling during the past 30 days. For each question, please mark the answer that best describes how often you had this feeling.

During the past 30 days, about how often did you feel… All of
the time
Most of the time Some of the time A little of the time None of the time
1. Nervous? O O O O O
2. Hopeless? O O O O O
3. Restless or fidgety? O O O O O
4. So depressed that nothing could cheer you up? O O O O O
5. That everything was an effort? O O O O O
6. Worthless? O O O O O


Your Responses

High Emotional Distress

If you responded to ANY OF questions 1, 2, 4, or 6 with a response of most of the time or all of the time OR if you responded to EITHER OF questions 3 or 5 with a response of all of the time

Your answers suggest that you have a high level of distress or a low or depressed mood. You could benefit from seeking help from a professional such as a family doctor, a psychologist, a psychiatrist, a school counsellor, or a social worker.

Together, you can make a plan to improve your situation.

Remember: With help things will get better.


Kessler, R.C., Andrews, G., Colpe, L.J., Hiripe, E., Mroczek, D.K., Normand, S.L., Walters, E.E., & Zaslavsky, A.M.  (2002). Short screening scales to monitor population prevalences and trends in non-specific psychological distress.  Psychological Medicine, 32(6), 959-976.

Read More - Scoring your responses

Getting Help