Two of the most common mental health conditions that people reference are anxiety and depression. But not everyone is aware of the differences between these two conditions. This is often because people who have anxiety can also suffer with depression, and vice-versa. Regardless, it's important to understand the individual symptoms of both conditions so you can easily identify what you or another person may be going through. That's what we're here for.
Why People Confuse Anxiety and Depression
As mentioned previously, many people experience both conditions simultaneously. Because of this, it's easy to merge the symptoms of both disorders into one. But identifying the individual symptoms of each can be important when coming up with a clearer diagnosis.
What is Anxiety?
When it comes to anxiety, it is in fact an umbrella term for many sub-types of anxiety disorder. But the most typical anxiety that people speak of is G.A.D, which stands for Generalised Anxiety Disorder.
Although anxiety comes in many forms, the symptoms are similar among them. Some of these symptoms often include the following:
- Excessive worry
- Issues with sleeping
- Trouble concentrating
- Fear and panic
- Feeling tension in the body
- Feeling irritable
- Being unable to speak confidently
If you experience these symptoms for six months or more, and they are disrupting your life, then you most certainly have an anxiety disorder and should see a professional. Some other specific types of anxiety include: panic disorder, social anxiety disorder, agoraphobia, separation anxiety and specific phobias.
What is Depression?
Depression has the power to impact every aspect of your life. While people with anxiety may continue to live ordinary lives, people with depression struggle to be integrated in normal everyday situations. The symptoms often include the following:
- Feelings of worthlessness
- Feeling discouragement
- Lacking in energy
- Lack of motivation
- No interest in hobbies
- Suicidal behaviour
- Low appetite
- Feeling guilty for no good reason
Because of how severe some of these symptoms are, one should see a professional after a few weeks of experiencing these symptoms. But of course, if one is showing signs of suicidal behaviour then they should receive help and guidance immediately.
Why People Have Both
Because of the nature of the symptoms of both disorders, it's quite common to have some overlap. For instance, if your anxiety caused you to panic then it's likely this could trigger lingering feelings of discouragement, worthlessness and lack of motivation. Or if your depression caused you to feel worthless, you may panic in social situations.
This is why these conditions are so closely linked, and more often than not, people suffer with both conditions at the same time.
Finding Therapy and Support
As mentioned before, if you or someone you know are experiencing an extreme case of anxiety or depression, be sure to make contact with the NHS via their crisis helpline. If you're in a different country then there may be a similar service in your area.
If your case hasn't become extreme yet, but you're worried about it being ongoing, you should book an appointment with your doctor to see if they would be willing to refer you for an evaluation. If you are officially diagnosed it will make life a little easier.
Whether diagnosed or not, you're also welcome to take a look at our list of therapies. We provide long term support for both anxiety, depression and a number of other conditions. The most common types of support is cognitive behavioural therapy, but we also have biofeedback, integrative psychotherapy and spiritual counselling.
Call us on: 0330 133 2597 or shoot an email to firstname.lastname@example.org to learn more.