Decoding myths of depression

Decoding myths of depression


There is so much confusion about this treatable psychological health condition. 

Many people assume depression presents with obvious symptoms, like always appearing sad or withdrawn from loved ones. While these are often signs of depression, the condition can manifest in many various ways, and sometimes holds hands with other psychological state disorders, particularly anxiety.

“Someone with depression could seem more overtly irritable or anxious than sad, albeit they’re internally experiencing sadness also,” says Cory Newman, PhD, director of the Centre for Cognitive Therapy at the University of Pennsylvania. “These are some things clinicians often will mention to folks who are worried about a couple of child’s behaviour, cueing them therein excessive, ongoing surliness in their youngster or teen may be a sign of depression. In adults, those that are less comfortable expressing the kinds of emotions they accompany weakness or vulnerability could also be more susceptible to display irritability as a symbol of their depression.”

But symptoms are not the sole sort of misconception around depression. Ahead, five myths to know because getting the real deal can help you or a loved one get help.


Many sufferers attend school or work and appear more irritable or anxious than sad, says Newman. It is also possible that they could have trouble concentrating, speak or crawl says Jocelyn Smith Carter, PhD, director of clinical training in DePaul University’s Department of Psychology, because depression’s effect on the brain also affects some motor functions.

The key’s to look for significant changes the person may become more argumentative or hopeless or markedly less social, Newman says; they might start drinking more, start stress-eating, or stop wanting to eat. If you notice such changes, “be an honest listener and recommend that they see knowledgeable,” he says.


Most folks have said, “Ugh, I am so depressed!” at some point, but true depression may be a specific diagnosis that about one in six adults will experience in their lifetime. Sadness is an emotion that tends to return and go, but the depressive disorder is more constant and lasts an extended time, often a month or far more, says Newman.

“Clinical depression comprises a variety of symptoms that you simply experience most of the day, nearly a day, for a minimum of the fortnight,” he says, and you will not know why. Other signs: feelings of extreme guilt or worthlessness, loss of interest in activities you once liked or suicidal thoughts. There is also dysthymia, a treatable and less extreme sort of persistent depression which will ebb and flow symptoms can include hopelessness, low self-esteem, and fatigue. If you are feeling unusually down for two weeks or more and have suicidal thoughts, ask a psychiatry doctor.


The mood is a component of the image, but depression can sap people’s energy and appetite and disrupt sleep. It is also connected to a host of physical symptoms, from hives and migraines to respiratory, cardiac, and gastrointestinal issues, Newman says. “Your mental and spirit can trigger specific physical reactions, and the other way around,” he says.

There seems to be a strong connection between inflammation, autoimmune disease, and depression: A large Danish study found that patients with an autoimmune disease were forty-five per cent more likely than those without one to have a mood disorder. If you will have a health condition, mind your psychological state too, advises Newman.


It is not about willpower. The condition is partly caused by, and also causes, physical changes within the body and brain, says Carter. That includes disruption of mood-regulating chemicals, and thus the sufferer cannot just “snap out of it.”

With the assistance of a therapist, someone with depression can learn skills to stay symptoms cornered or cope better if they are doing arise, says Newman. For example, patients learn to reframe the way they see things, resist defeatist all-or-nothing thinking, and celebrate small accomplishments, which makes them feel better and avoid abandoning themselves, he adds.

Therapy also can teach people to “complete tasks in small bursts and build their way copy to doing things they enjoy,” Carter says, which further lifts mood. Some may have medication to assist balanced mood and assist with sleep. “Depression could also be a disorder,” Newman says, but a treatable one from which recovery is typically possible. 


It is one of the only mental illnesses to treat. That is because “it is one of our most well-researched disorders in terms of how people respond,” Carter says. The tricky part is landing on the proper treatment, Newman says, also as addressing conditions like anxiety, PTSD, and drug abuse that always come alongside depression. With therapy and medication (which research shows are most effective for folks with moderate or severe depression), up to seventy per cent of people with major depression show improvement.

The FDA has recently approved a version of ketamine as a treatment for a few sufferers, and in several small studies, the utilization of psychedelic drugs for treatment-resistant depression and PTSD has shown promise. The important thing isn’t to attend to urge help: the earlier treatment starts, the simpler it’s, consistent with the National Institute of psychological state.

If you or someone you recognize is in danger, call the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline at 1-800-273-TALK (8255) or text HOME to 741741 to message a trained crisis counsellor from the Crisis Text Line for free.


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