What is Depression?

You can better understand the nature of Depression by looking both at what it is and what it is not. 

There are various forms of Depression. Depression is not a passing blue mood or transient sad feelings. 

These emotions are typical and appropriate reactions to sad news, disappointments, and unhappy situations. 

With depressive disorders, there is typically a more intense fluctuation in mood that last for longer time than

what would be commonly expected. People who are depressed experience persistence in negative mood,

a deep feeling of emptiness, hopelessness, and inability to change the mood they are in. Sometimes, there

are mood swings like in Bi-Polar disorder, where one alternates between highs and lows, or there will be a more

subtle and enduring downcast mood, as inDysthymic disorder, which can last for years. Major Depression Disorder,

commonly known as “clinical depression” involves more intense bouts that may last from several weeks to several

months, and is episodic in nature.


Depression affects your whole being.  It is a physiological, behavioral, and psychological reaction all at once.

On the physiological level it may include bodily reaction such as eating and sleeping disturbances, low energy

level and persistent fatigue. 

Psychologically, depressed people have difficulty concentrating, have low motivation to do things, have

negative self-image and they believe that their future will not be better.  

On the behavioral level, it can sabotage one’s ability to make decisions and act, interact socially and maintain

interest in usual activities. Depression can disrupt relationship and functioning in everyday situations. Suicidal

thoughts may enter one’s mind, perhaps not so much as a wish to die but as a perceived solution that can relieve

the pain they feel. Sometimes, these thoughts are put into action and result in tragic loss.