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Feelings are complex.

In case of stressful situations, people most often consider their sadness to be depression.

Although sadness is certainly a symptom of depression, it is not the only symptom of depression.

There are other characteristics and symptoms of depression that people must understand in order to decipher their emotional experiences.

Comparing Sadness and Depression

Firstly, it is super important to know the difference between sadness and depression.

Defining Sadness: Sadness is a common human emotion that is experienced by almost everybody in situations that are gloomy or traumatic. Basically, sadness is a natural and healthy reflex to critical situations!

The catch is that someone who is unhappy may feel better by crying or venting out their pent-up frustrations. Sadness is a specific reaction to a specific occurrence.

Sadness is temporary. It is an emotion that lasts for some time and then the person resumes functioning normally. Although, if it persists then it might be a sign of depression.

For the 6.7% of U.S Adults who have major depressive disorder each year, sadness is just one out of the many symptoms that they face.

If you are feeling blue, for a little more than 2 weeks, then it might be serious and you must consult a doctor.

Defining Depression: Depression, on the other hand, is a mood disorder that can majorly impact and interfere with the daily life of an individual.

Unlike sadness, depression doesn’t fade away as time passes. One needs professional help to deal with the symptoms of depression.

Depression can drastically influence a person’s behavior, well-being, emotions, lifestyle, appetite, etc. A depressed person can even get suicidal thoughts regularly.

Depression is a prolonged mental illness that can change your life entirely.

Here are some:

Common Symptoms of Depression

Prolonged Sadness: Sadness that lasts for more than 2 weeks might be indicative of depression. It will also depend upon the severity of the sadness. This can also lead to changes in their appetite – either eating too much or not eating at all.

Loss of interest in common daily activities: Depression may even restrict a person from performing his/her daily tasks. One might feel absolutely demotivated to take up tasks such as maintaining personal hygiene, grooming oneself, going to work, etc.

Feeling hopeless and unworthy: A depressed person may have feelings of worthlessness and constant excessive guilt every day. This makes them lead their lives with a pessimistic approach. They are usually unable to overcome traumatic events.

Uneven Sleep Patterns: Depression makes a person think, talk, move, and eat very slowly. Depressed people feel constantly tired. They either fall prey to insomnia or oversleeping. Sleep activity can get miserably disturbed.

Irritability and Isolation: A depressed individual would usually feel emotionally drained in social gatherings. They’d often avoid such events and will also not be interested in taking part in any such social activities.

If you or your loved one is experiencing any of the above-given symptoms, then, unfortunately, it is not sadness. It is depression!