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How Long Can Depression Last (And Why)?

Exact Answer: 6 To 10.7 Months On Average

It’s easy to think that depression is just a fleeting feeling, but it can last for months and even years. Depression is so much more than just sadness; it changes one’s whole outlook on life and makes one feel as if there’s no way out of the darkness. 

However, everyone knows that after enough time goes by, things start getting better again- one will be able to find joy in the little things once again and enjoy our lives. 

The average person feels sad or hopeless for 6 to 10.7 months. There are tons of resources out there, and one should never hesitate to reach out.

How Long Can Depression Last?

TypeDuration
Depression 6 to 10.7 months
Anxiety 20 minutes at a time

Depression is a complex mental illness that can last for months or years. Factors such as age, living situation, and other depression-related health problems can all factor into the duration of depression. However, it is found to last for 6 to 10.7 months on average. 

The severity and length of a depression episode depend on many factors: personal history, physical and medical conditions, family history, life stressors at the time of diagnosis. Sometimes episodes continue over extended periods without producing any significant change in symptoms; this is called ‘chronic’ or ‘treatment-resistant depression. 

Treatment-resistant depressive episodes include inadequate response to two adequate trials (8-12 weeks) with different antidepressants or electroconvulsive therapy (ECT).

As depression is a mental illness that affects how one feels, thinks, and behaves, it can be difficult to cope. It can last for days, months, or years at a time. Countless people experience depression at some point in their lives. Experts estimate that as many as 7% of children between the ages of 10 and 17 may suffer from anxiety and 3% in long-term depression. 

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The causes may be related to psychosocial factors (such as stress), trauma (including bullying), or other psychological conditions like anxiety disorders, eating disorders, or obsessive-compulsive disorder.

It interferes with work, school, friends, and family relationships.

Some people experience just one episode of depression in their lifetime, while others may suffer from recurring episodes. In general, however, depression tends to become less severe and frequent over time.

Why Would Depression Last So Long?

Depression is a serious illness if it lasts for more than two weeks. If one is experiencing symptoms of depression, people should tough it out on their own – getting help is necessary.

Many effective treatments are available, including medication, therapy, and lifestyle changes. Don’t hesitate to speak with the doctor or mental health professional about the options.

If one is afraid to face a lack of motivation, fear of people’s reactions or judgment, anger at oneself for feeling helpless, the cycle can continue endlessly. Sometimes, it takes a little self-love and self-care to interrupt the cycle. 

It starts by telling oneself that they will not allow themselves to feel this way anymore-at least not today. One should take a moment to admit that they’ve been neglecting their needs and forgive themselves for doing so. 

There are many reasons why depression can be chronic. Stress is reported to cause low serotonin levels, which is the chemical that helps control mood. Mild depression, or cases of decreased enthusiasm or curiosity, can be due to a lack of neurotransmitters and the chemicals needed in the brain and body for health and well-being.

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Sometimes an event like a death in the family might seem like it would make one think about it every day for weeks at a time. Especially if one is close to them, they often don’t know what will trigger such emotions. Overall, depression does not last forever.

Conclusion

Depression has a way of running itself; living with depression takes imagination and willpower.

A common mistake is waiting for the right time; this rarely works. 

Seek out help early by talking to a professional or finding online resources to guide one through the recovery process. Sticking with treatment is difficult but will improve one’s mental health outcomes in the long term.

Everyone has good days and bad days, even when they are healthy; it is normal to be sad now and then. However, if feeling blue has lasted so long, it will affect daily activities, eating habits, work performance, or the ability to enjoy things.

References

  1. https://psycnet.apa.org/record/1955-01239-001 
  2. https://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/abs/pii/S0165614799013097 
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