The moment we hear “depression”, words like sad, lonely and anxious come to our mind. But, how many people can you imagine that look “happy” but are depressed at heart, at the same time? People who seem to be handling their lives really well, but are actually anxious and scared of things going wrong. Such people might be experiencing a quite unknown form of depression- smiling depression. Read on to know more about it.

What is Smiling depression?

Smiling depression is a major mood disorder in which the sufferer seems to be happy and smiling on the outside, but is actually really upset and in pain within. Individuals may appear to be functioning like a regular person who is mentally, physically and socially fit. And as a consequence, most of the people don’t even realize that they’re depressed and thus, don’t seek help either. By and large, people who suffer from this disorder are either a part of a relationship or educated and working. They haven’t faced failures or aren’t struggling. They live under the belief that their lives are totally normal and put together.
Image source: shutterstock

How is it different from regular depression?

We generally link depression to words like hopelessness, fatigue, and anxiety. The symptoms are quite visible through the acts of the depressed individual. But in smiling depression, the person doesn’t reveal how does he actually feels or what he is living through. In a way, the sufferers wear a mask in order to conceal their problems from the outside world. Pretending to be content and satisfied and at times, perfect. A person with regular depression might have suicidal thoughts but might not possess enough courage to act. But, individuals with smiling depression do have the ability to plan and can even make it happen. That’s why this form of depression is a lot more severe than regular depression.
Image source: shutterstock.

Tips to treat “smiling depression”

1. Accept the fact that it exists. It’s tough for people with smiling depression. As they’ve constantly been under the illusion with everything being normal, they don’t want to admit it as they see it as a sign of weakness. But one must keep in mind that these emotions are a function of human nature and aid us in signaling our needs and support from fellow humans.

2. Speak to someone you can rely on. People with this disorder generally don’t open a lot. The reason behind this can be that they fear how someone would react to this fact and therefore, keep things to themselves only. Share how you feel, this might not appear to work at first. Give some time to yourself and the other person. You might feel better and open up.

3. It’s okay not to be perfect. Everyone has set some standards for life, but it’s important to realize if that streak is too high to achieve. Such high standards can start making you self-critical and you might start placing yourself into the “not good enough category”. Accept who you are and have compassion for yourself.

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