You are able to maintain your social and work life, fulfill all of the responsibilities and achieve great results in many fields, yet you are not doing it with enthusiasm and joy. Besides, you are overwhelmed with depressive feelings even when you don’t know why. Well, this means that there are good chances that you suffer from high-functioning depression.
Depression, a major mental health disease, has different faces. You can be depressed and unable to do or achieve anything, or you can be absolutely functional and successful, looking like you have it all together.
There may have been situations when you gathered the courage to express your true feelings, and the other side was surprised that you felt that way because you “had nothing to be depressed about.” These types of reactions are hard for depressed people, as it is hard to understand and explain what is the cause of those feelings.
It’s hard dealing with any type of depression, but there is always a way for the sun to shine again. In the following paragraphs, we will learn more about that invisible enemy of yours, and after, we will explain how CBD can help you in your battle against it. So, let’s define what high-functioning depression is.
What is high-functioning depression?
Depression, as said, is a major mental health disease, and it affects around 7% of adults in the USA. It isn’t the same for everyone, and it can vary from mild to severe. One form of depression is high-functioning depression, which is more of a buzzword for the clinical disease called persistent depressive disorder (PDD) or dysthymia. It’s a disorder where the affected person experiences low-level symptoms of depression for two years at least.
Depression can happen to anyone at any age under any circumstances, triggered by different reasons. When we talk about the cause of high-functioning depression, genetics, biology and life experience play a significant role, but the exact reason is often unknown. Everyone has different life experiences and different brain chemistry, so it’s difficult to determine the cause of high-functioning depression precisely.
See also: CBD Oil Used For Depression
People suffering from it often function normally and seem satisfied with their lives, but on the other side of the coin, they struggle inside. In other words, they do everything they are supposed to do, but without having a good time doing it.
Also, it’s important to emphasize that high-functioning doesn’t mean fully functioning. The affected people are able to perform normally but still experience the symptoms of depression.
High-functioning depression is less severe than other depressive disorders, but it may have terrible consequences if not adequately treated. On the other hand, it’s hard to tell if someone suffers from this condition. Often, even the affected people can’t recognize the symptoms and figure out why they’re feeling the way they’re feeling.
People with high functioning depression tend to hide their negative feelings and pretend like everything is fine. They force themselves to attend social events, be productive and thrive at work, manage all of their responsibilities, and generally want everything to be perfect. They end up in the circle of crying and suffering at home and fake-smiling when they’re outside.
That can affect one’s health in different ways. High-functioning depression can lead to anxiety, thyroid disease, migraines or alcoholism and drug addiction if they often choose that way of getting the relief. That’s why it’s necessary for the affected people to start expressing their negative feelings and for the listener to start believing them. Even more important is to reach for professional help.
We said it’s hard to recognize if you or someone you know suffers from high-functioning depression, but observing the symptoms may help identify. So, let’s find out what the symptoms of high-functioning depression could be.
The symptoms of high-functioning depression
Identifying this type of mental health disorder can be tricky, so it is best to let your psychiatrist or other mental health professional diagnose it. According to the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders (DSM-5), there are certain criteria that need to be met for a person to be formally diagnosed with high-functioning depression, or PPD. Many symptoms described by criteria are similar to the symptoms of major depressive disorder, but are less severe.
The first criterion is that a sufferer experienced a depressive mood most of the days for at least two years, during which symptoms don’t cease for more than two months. That must include two or more of the common PDD symptoms. The symptoms are:
- Changes in sleep patterns – insomnia or sleeping too much
- Lack of energy, exhaustion and fatigue
- Feelings of sadness, hopelessness and emptiness
- Changes in appetite (low appetite or overeating)
- Trouble concentrating and making decision
- Lowered self-esteem and feelings of worthlessness and guilt
- Anxiety and helplessness
- Restlessness or trouble sitting still
Other criteria include the following:
The affected person has never experienced a period of mania or hyperactivity or an unusual euphoric and energetic feeling.
The symptoms and depressed mood cause some impairment in one or more areas of normal functioning and significant suffering in the individual. Even if the person seems to function properly, they will start to fail in some aspects of life over time.
The symptoms of this disorder can’t be explained better by another mental illness or a medical condition.
A person diagnosed with PDD may also experience an episode of major depressive disorder, at least once in a lifetime. It’s also possible that low-level depression can turn into severe depression at any time.
So, these diagnostic criteria portrait what it exactly means to struggle with high-functioning depression in clinical terms, but what does it actually feel like to have this mental illness?
First, you may feel down most of the time. Even if you try to mask it, eventually, other people may notice it and refer to you as gloomy, cynical, or a downer. A low mood is almost always present, and it feels like there is no relief. If you ever feel happiness, it doesn’t last long, and it’s hard for you to see the bright side of any situation.
It also happens that you feel sad and hopeless, so you may cry a lot without any particular reason.
Even if you sleep too much, you can feel tired all the time. You may be described as lazy, but you can’t gather the energy to do more than is necessary. You can manage to do everything you’re supposed to do, but it seems like a massive effort for you.
You don’t feel good and worthy about yourself. You constantly criticize yourself and don’t accept a compliment. You may think that you don’t deserve to be happy or to be liked by others.
It’s common for your weight to fluctuate without your intention. Depending on your mood, you either overeat without noticing, or you have no appetite at all.
You avoid going out and don’t want to attend any social event, so you must force yourself to engage in social activities and maintain relationships.
Also, you lose the interest in hobbies and activities that you had enjoyed before and you still like them, but they don’t fulfill you anymore.
Also, many people suffering from PPD feel tempted to use substances like drugs or alcohol to make themselves feel better.
In conclusion, if you find yourself among the mentioned symptoms and described feelings, don’t rush to diagnose yourself with PPD and let the professionals do it.
So, now you have gained full knowledge about high-function depression, or PPD, and you probably wonder if there is any way to overcome this mental health disorder and to be happy again.
How to cope with high-functioning depression?
There is a stigma surrounding depression that only those with severe symptoms, such as suicidal thoughts, need the treatment. People suffering from high-functioning depression might feel guilty to reach for help since their symptoms are not that severe. They also tend to minimize the seriousness of their condition and think that they don’t have a reason to feel that way since they function well in life. Their condition often goes unnoticed, so they rarely have emotional support from their family or friends.
All of that can lead to more significant problems. Those who suffer might isolate themselves from society or to try to do well so hard, acting like they’re fine. Like other types of depression, this one also puts the sufferer at risk of suicide, so it should not be neglected. Maybe this condition isn’t as debilitating as MDD, but it still affects the sufferer in many ways, so it is crucial to seek help.
According to everything stated so far, if you suspect you’re suffering from this depressive disorder, go to your health care provider, talk with them about everything that is bothering you and express how you feel.
See also: CBD for Relief from Depression?
After that, the first step to get cured is to get a professional diagnosis. Then, your physician can recommend psychotherapy or talk therapy. One of the most popular is cognitive-behavioral therapy (CBT), which focuses on how your thoughts, beliefs, and attitudes can lead to problematic behaviors.
CBT can help you to recognize negative thought patterns and learn how to change them by thinking positively. You will also learn to identify triggers and how to deal with them healthily. CBT will help you develop coping strategies to resolve symptoms, such as journaling, exercise, and meditation. Then, you will find ways to improve relationships with loved ones. Lastly, you’ll gain problem-solving skills to deal with life’s challenges.
Getting professional help is essential because psychotherapy will cause an improvement of your mood and functioning, making your life activities more enjoyable and leading to improved quality of life in general.
Along with psychotherapy, you can consider taking some natural medicines such as CBD products. CBD, short for cannabidiol, is one of the cannabinoids, compounds found in the hemp plants. Hemp is one of the species of Cannabis Sativa plant, and unlike marijuana, hemp is almost THC free. Therefore, you can’t get “high” by consuming the product containing CBD as it can’t affect your mental clarity. Because of that, CBD products are absolutely legal.
CBD can be found in different forms of edibles – tinctures, gummies and capsules. CBD products are proven to be very effective in fighting a number of ailments like anxiety, depression, sleep disorder, arthritis, allergies, pain, etc. They show a great beneficial impact on people with depression as CBD significantly impacts serotonin level. People also claim they experienced “total mind calmness” after consuming some of the CBD products.
If you want to get an extra benefit from CBD products, then take CBD gummies, the most delicious CBD edible. So, how can they help you in your battle with high-functioning depression?
How can CBD gummies help?
Cannabidiol (CBD) feeds your endocannabinoid system (ECS), which is a part of the immune system. The ECS is responsible for regulating biological functions such as mood, keeping the body healthy. It consists of endocannabinoids, enzymes and receptors that attract cannabinoids. CBD binds to those receptors, strengthening the immune system and helping the body to fight ailments more naturally. Also, according to research, CBD helps improve neurotransmitter balance in the brain.
Therefore, CBD gummies can be very helpful in managing your mood swings and depressive feelings, bringing mind and body calmness. They don’t cure depression disorder but are able to ease its symptoms.
Depression can overwhelm you with a sense of sadness, causing an adverse change in your dopamine and serotonin levels. By taking CBD gummies, those levels will rise, making you feel more cheerful and happier.
If you struggle with insomnia, regular usage of CBD gummies will improve your sleep patterns. CBD also works with the neurotransmitters that control appetite, so if high-functioning depression causes you poor appetite, CBD gummies can help establish a regular need for food.
So, take CBD gummies to feel better whenever you feel down or experience some of the symptoms. The best way of healing is a natural way.
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