Is depression a disease?
Depression As Disease
Many people debate and argue about whether depression really equates to a disease or not. What if both sides are right?
First of all, the word depression means different things to different people. Some people feel anxious and call it depression. Some feel sad and call it depression. Others confuse worry, stress, and a host of other conditions with depression.
Some people mope. Many feel self-pity. Others grieve.
Still others feel abandonment of self; loss of self-worth or self-esteem. Many are crushed by shame. Many feel powerless.
All these other emotions and states of mind are not depression, even though they often come at the same time. There’s nothing more depressing than being riddled with shame, for example.
These many different emotional states are often confused with depression. The words may be used interchangeably, but it’s only because people seldom want to seriously look at their emotions.
It’s way too easy to pass judgment on yourself, slap a label on what you’re feeling, and declare the problem half-solved.
You may be calling it depression when you’re really feeling shame or worthlessness or self-pity.
Depression comes from depressing your emotions. It can be mild, or it can be HEAVY.
Real depression feels like a heavy weight pressing down on you. It presses on your body and your mind.
The color gets washed out of the world. Everything looks gray. You feel apathetic. (Although apathy comes without depression also.) Life seems hopeless. You’re always walking uphill. Everything takes so much effort.
That’s real depression.
Sometimes real depression crosses a line. Then it truly becomes an illness.
Usually, true depression exists only as an emotion and a state of being. Other times it crosses a line and then could be correctly classified as a disease. In these occasional instances, short-term use of antidepressants may be warranted.
I believe this to be a rare condition, but it does happen. And it’s certainly reversible!
Be especially wary of the ‘five minute diagnosis’. It takes careful evaluation to determine the true need for antidepressants. They should only be the tool of last resort.
Do you want to take antidepressants just so you’ll feel better; so you won’t have to deal with your emotions?
Does the weight you feel come from severe depression, or is it just the unresolved issues of your life that you’d rather not look at?
The purpose of antidepressants is not to avoid dealing with your issues. You don’t take meds to ‘feel better‘. You don’t take them to numb the pain. You take them to save your life.
You take them to give yourself a little breathing room when death seems the only sane alternative.
Their true purpose is to provide a temporary crutch in those rare instances when you’re beyond feeling hollow and worthless. When you reach a point of total and utter hopelessness.
It’s a point somewhere beyond having nothing to live for. Many people believe they have nothing to live for, but that doesn’t mean they all need antidepressants.
(It’s never once been true, by the way. Everyone always has something to live for.)
Keep in mind that depression medications don’t cure mopey-ness, shame, self-pity or pessimism. They don’t end the grieving or the guilt. They can’t stop you from feeling sad nor help you from doubt and worry. Or if they do, it’s only temporary relief.
They don’t take away the hurt you feel. At best they’ll hide it for a while.
But if you’ve crossed a line – from worthlessness to meaninglessness, from feeling hollow to feeling empty, from helplessness to totally hopelessness…
If you think you’re depressed – seriously depressed – carefully evaluate your situation along these lines. And always bring someone else into the evaluations.
In addition to reading about depression as disease, it’s also important to understand the underlying causes that would lead someone to such a painful place.
I almost feel guilty because my life has become so enjoyable and so easy. Especially since I remember how miserable I used to be.
Basically it comes down to making one slight shift in what you do everyday, and you can watch in amazement as your life slowly begins to start working out in almost every way.
It’s such an important change that I’ve written a complete e-book about it. And I’d like to give you a copy for free. All you have to do is write your first name and primary email address into the space below, and you’ll be receiving a link to download the e-book right away.