We all felt sad in a particular time in our lives. We lost our job. We lost someone who we loved. Or something else tragic happened in our live. It is very ‘normal’ to feel sad or depressed when life struggles appear, it is the natural reaction from our brain to these circumstances. It shows that your brain is healthy and it is functioning fine. But what when the feelings don’t go away while the tragic circumstances went away or was a long time ago? This might be depression.
Feeling depressed or sad can be a normal reaction to life’s struggles, loss, or an injured self-esteem. This is our brain ‘telling us’ that there is something wrong. But if the brain ‘keeps telling’ that there is something wrong, while objectively, there isn’t, it may be clinical depression. A very serious but also a very treatable medical condition.
To summarize what depression is in one sentence:
Feelings of intense sadness, hopelessness, worthlessness or helplessness that last for more than days, weeks or even months.
About 5 in 100 adults have depression yearly. Sometimes it will last for just a couple of weeks. However, 1 in 4 woman and 1 in 10 men will get an episode of depression serious enough that requires treatment.