Feeling depressed vs being depressed
Feeling depressed never lasts
Being depressed isn’t the same thing as having depression
Being depressed is a temporary state of sadness and dissatisfaction. Everybody feels depressed from time to time. This is due to a specific event, such as breaking up with your girlfriend or boyfriend, flunking an exam, or fighting with a parent or friend. Then you have no energy or motivation. Your sleep, mood, and appetite are affected as well. But don’t worry: everything will return to normal as soon as you find a solution to your problem.
Depression is an illness
Depression is a condition that only a professional can diagnose. It’s characterized by deep sadness that lasts for several weeks. The symptoms are intense and persistent and they don’t get better with time. Nothing seems important: school, relationships with family and friends, physical health… Often the depressed person no longer feels like doing anything because nothing gives them any pleasure or joy. Depression may also be accompanied by suicidal thoughts.
- Permanent sadness (you often feel like crying)
- Irritability (everything bugs you or makes you mad)
- Loss of interest or enjoyment in things you enjoyed before
- Loss or gain of appetite or weight
- Sleep problems (you can’t sleep or, on the contrary, you sleep all the time)
- Fatigue and lack of energy
- Concentration or memory problems
- Agitation (you can’t keep still) or sluggishness (you can’t do anything anymore)
- Low self-esteem (you feel dumb and worthless)
- Feelings of loneliness and isolation
- Thoughts about death or suicide
If you feel like this, wholly or partly, you might have clinical depression, don’t take it lightly: get support without delay. The only people who can make this diagnosis are professionals such as a doctor or psychiatrist. Other people you trust can support you and help you feel better if you talk to them about it.