Signs and symptoms of high-functioning depression and how to get help

People can maintain 'normal' lives whilst struggling internally with high functioning depression
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Some people dismiss high-functioning depression as trivial and not a genuine health condition despite it being a real illness with tangible symptoms.

A report by Priory Group revealed that individuals with high-functioning depression often experience many of the same symptoms as those with clinical depression, except their symptoms tend to be less debilitating. As reported by Wales Online, those around them may not realise something is amiss as these individuals often portray themselves as happy, successful, and industrious.

In truth, people with high-functioning depression, also known as dysthymia or persistent depressive disorder (PDD), are typically able to perform well at work or school, socialise normally, and manage their responsibilities. However, high-functioning depression can be a chronic and enduring illness.

Even though its symptoms are less severe than other types of depression, this doesn't diminish its significance for those who grapple with it. The signs of high-functioning depression can be subtle, but being aware of what to look out for is half the battle.

Things that can help

Living with high-functioning depression can be incredibly draining. However, there are a number of things you can do to help you cope a bit better on a daily basis.

When you're feeling low, it can be easy to neglect your physical health and wellbeing. However, looking after yourself physically can help you to feel better mentally.

Try to do some exercise every day, even if this is just a 10-minute walk outside in the fresh air, as exercise boosts the 'happy chemicals' in our brain which can help to make us feel more positive. It's also important to make sure you eat a balanced diet, drink plenty of water and try to get enough sleep at night.

If you're feeling physically well, this can help to bolster your mood and mental health.

Another one of the symptoms of high-functioning depression is experiencing negative thoughts and feelings of hopelessness. If you find yourself thinking in a pessimistic and negative way, ask yourself "What evidence is there for what I'm thinking? " or "What would I say to a loved one if they were thinking this way? ".

Challenging your thought processes can help you to view things in a more balanced, positive and healthy way, which can improve your mood.

While it may be tempting to keep your feelings to yourself and isolate from others, it's crucial to maintain a support network with trusted individuals. Having someone who can listen to your emotions without judgement and provide comfort during challenging times can be incredibly beneficial and comforting.