Health & Fit: I Have Smiling Depression—This Is What It Feels Like - - PressFrom - US
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Health & Fit I Have Smiling Depression—This Is What It Feels Like

04:40  09 november  2019
04:40  09 november  2019 Source:   oprahmag.com

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Smiling depression describes someone living with depression on the inside while appearing happy What are the symptoms of smiling depression ? Someone experiencing smiling depression would As with other types of depression , smiling depression can be triggered by a situation — like a

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My day starts like any other: I get up and get dressed. I feed my newborn and ready my oldest for school. We select her outfit and accessories, and I brush her long, blonde locks while she tends to her teeth. As she rinses her mouth with bubblegum-flavored fluid and watermelon-scented paste, I brew a cup of coffee. I gather my Thermos, bag, and laptop and head out the door. But some time after drop-off, my “facade” falls away—and I crumble.

a person standing in front of a window: While smiling depression is not an official form of depression, many high-functioning individuals use the term to describe their illness. Here's what it means.© Hero Images While smiling depression is not an official form of depression, many high-functioning individuals use the term to describe their illness. Here's what it means.

By 8:00 a.m., my depression kicks in.

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This is what daily life with high-functioning depression is really like .

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You wouldn’t know it. My face is washed and hair is tied back. My outfit is tidy. My cheeks are full of color, and I say hello to everyone I meet: teachers, crossing guards, fellow mothers on the street. At work, I meet all my deadlines. I hold down an amazing, “I pinch myself everyday” sort of job—but between assignments I nap. I vacillate between activity and apathy, and my mind wanders to dark places.

I tell myself I am not smart enough or good enough. I am a terrible writer, wife, and mom, and I believe my friends and family would be better off without me.

Everyone would be better off without me.

I know why. I live with bipolar and anxiety disorders, and while the latter makes me restless and agitated, the former causes me to cycle between manic highs and crippling lows. But I find the depressive episodes the hardest. I function, but do not feel. My face says I’m happy, but inside I want to cry. I'm happy on the outside, sad on the inside—a classic case of "smiling depression." But what is smiling depression, exactly—and what are the symptoms?

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I feel like the light at the end of the tunnel is a solitary candle about to blow out at any moment. Sometimes, my depression is a dull-witted sloth, batting at me with sloppy arms as I go about my business. Occasionally, my depression is a roaring monster, shredding me from the inside out, while

A visual metaphor that aims to highlight what it ’s like to live with a mental illness. The film encourages the audience to conduct their own 'experiment' - outlining the steps to be taken for the watcher to replicate the feeling of depression in their own time in order to raise awareness and increase

According to Dr. Mateusz Grzesiak, psychologist and coach, the symptoms of "smiling depression" are similar to other forms of depression. Those with this condition often experience an overwhelming sense of sadness, fatigue, and/or loss of interest "in what was fun before." Feelings of helplessness and hopelessness are also common, as is a lack of self-confidence and low self-esteem, and physical changes can also occur— including weight loss or gain and trouble sleeping. However, the main difference between a "normal" depressive disorder and "smiling depression" is how these symptoms present themselves.

"The symptoms are the same as in typical depressive disorder, but they are experienced internally and not expressed on the outside," Grzesiak says. "This means a person can be a highly-functioning individual, have a regular job, and appear to be happy, positive, an 'normal.'"

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Depression is smiling when you actually are breaking down, being on the verge of tears. It ’s making everyone laugh and bringing joy to others while you feel like It ’s wearing this mask of fake smiles and faked happiness during the day, and once you come home breaking down and feeling exhausted.

You can feel all of those depressed feelings , but still show up for work (and your family and your friends) McKenzie says that smiling depression is essentially another name for high-functioning This Video Captures What Depression Feels Like . “ I think it ’s important to use terms that people

That said, it is important to note the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders, or DSM–5, does not recognize "smiling depression," "walking depression," or "high-functioning depression" as a stand-alone illness. Rather, the phrase has been socially constructed to describe a major depressive disorder with atypical symptoms. But that does not mean the condition is any less serious than officially recognized forms of depression. According to Dr. Dina Goldstein Silverman, a licensed psychologist and assistant professor of psychiatry, smiling depression is just as damning—and dangerous.

Though it's not officially recognized as a stand-alone illness, smiling depression is serious.

“Oftentimes, I am the only person in [my patients] immediate circle who is aware of how he or she is feeling on the inside,” Silverman tells the National Alliance of Mental Illness. And that is, and always has been, the case with me. No one knows when I am breaking down or falling apart. They don’t understand the pain that sits behind my paper-thin mask. Plus, little would change if they did. Because I have a good, #blessed life, my mental illness is rarely taken seriously.

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This post was originally published on Nick’s personal blog and an edited version is shared below with his permission… Here’s a few things I feel when it all ‘kicks off’, and this can last between 2 weeks and 6 months. Tell me if my symptoms of depression sound like one of your ‘off days’

This is what depression feels like to me . It 's not a glamorized description because living with depression isn't fun. In fact, it 's something I wouldn't

I cannot tell you how many times I have heard “but you seem so happy. You don’t act like your depressed.” And that? That may be the most dangerous part of having a “functional” illness. It makes you feel crazy, ashamed, and alone.

So I push on, with a smile on my face and sadness in my heart. I immerse myself in life and work. I run three to four miles a day and play with my two, loving kids. And I say—and do— what I am supposed to. I go out to parties, dinners, and school and work events. I laugh at the right times.

But inside, I’m drowning. I feel like an actor on a stage. A puppet on a string. Inside, I'm hurting. I fight an enemy I cannot see on a battlefield which does not truly exist, and I’m exhausted.

I can't explain to you how tired I am. I’m lonely. I feel lost in a sea of people. Invisible, like a specter. No one sees me. No one gets me. No one understands, and when I scream, no one hears me.

It’s like heaving on an empty stomach: There is pain and discomfort, but no substance. I have no voice.

The good news is there is help. Smiling depression is treated just like any other depressive disorder, with a combination of counseling, medication, meditation, and other lifestyle changes. I see a psychologist and psychiatrist to manage my symptoms, and have for many years. However, the condition can only be treated after it's diagnosed, which can be difficult since those with this form of mental illness tend to conceal their symptoms. What’s more, according to the World Health Organization, smiling depression presents itself with antithetical (or conflicting) symptoms, thus complicating the process.

So if you find yourself struggling, acknowledge your pain; do not repress it. Understand there is nothing wrong with you. You are not weak or bad for having these symptoms or thoughts. Talk to someone you trust and, if someone opens up to you, do not dismiss their symptoms. Avoid comments like “but you seem so happy/put together” and never ask “why.” This is impossible to answer and only breeds shame and stigma. And practice empathy—not only for others, but for yourself, because you matter. And so does your health and happiness.

For more information about mental health programs and resources, contact SAMHSA’s National Helpline at 1-800-662-HELP, call the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline at 1-800-273-8255, or text “START” to 741-741 to immediately speak to a trained counselor at Crisis Text Line.

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