Confusion can lead to neglect of a serious condition that requires treatment (depression) or, at the other end of the spectrum, to overreaction to a normal emotional state (sadness).
According to the American Psychiatric Association, depression, technically referred to as major depression, is a common and serious medical condition that negatively affects how a person feels, thinks and acts.
Depression can arise without a clear explanation or as a result of an unhealthy reaction to a painful event. In other words, depression causes people to feel sad about almost everything, not just a specific event.
“We all have down days,” says Nekeshia Hammond, a psychologist from Tampa Bay, Florida, USA. “But if symptoms persist for weeks, it could be depression.”
- Constantly feeling sad, empty, or hopeless.
- Lack of enjoyment in hobbies or activities that you generally enjoy.
- Feeling restless or frustrated.
- Sleeping too much or too little.
- Changes in appetite or weight.
- Loss of energy, especially during everyday tasks.
- Difficulty concentrating or making decisions.
- Thoughts of self-harm or suicide.
Ashi Tomar, in-house psychologist at Veda Rehabilitation & Wellness, emphasizes: “Being in depression is very different than simply being sad, it may require long-term management and treatment through psychopharmacology and psychotherapeutic interventions.” Although sadness is an integral part “Depression is not always the same as depression.”
“To understand depression, it’s important to look for symptoms that occur almost every day, almost all day, for at least two weeks,” says Tomar.
The diagnosis of depression is at the discretion of a psychologist. It can be very helpful to seek professional help from a psychologist and psychiatrist.
What happens to a person who is sad?
- Could express emotions through crying.
- I could spend time alone.
- You can maintain regular eating and sleeping habits.
- You can participate in regular activities such as work or school.
Within a few days or weeks, you will begin to feel better.
Living in sadness for an extended period of time can feel like depression. However, unless other symptoms of depression are present, long periods of sadness are not the same as depression.