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Can You Experience Depression and Anxiety Together?

    Can You Experience Depression and Anxiety Together?

    Many people may have some form of anxiety or depression. However, many people may not realize that it is possible to experience depression and anxiety together. To help you learn more about the conditions, here are some facts you ought to know.

    What Is Anxiety?

    Anxiety is a feeling of anxiousness, nervousness, or fear, and a person who has an anxiety disorder would have extreme symptoms for six months or longer. The symptoms can often begin at childhood or adolescence and usually continue into adulthood.

    There are many different kinds of anxiety disorders. Some may include generalized anxiety disorder, social phobia, etc. However, it is important to know that you can have more than one kind of anxiety disorder.

    Other than fear or anxiousness, some symptoms of anxiety include rapid breathing, sweating, and trembling, among others. It can also make it hard for a person to focus on things that are not related to what they are worried about and they may feel restless or tired, which can lead to insomnia.

    What Is Depression?

    Depression is a kind of mental health condition that is caused by chemical imbalances in the brain. It often causes a person to feel a huge amount of despair, isolation, and sadness. However, it would be important to note that depression is not the same as being sad or lonely because of difficult life experiences such as a breakup or a loss of a loved one.

    Like anxiety, depression can disrupt a person’s life. It can affect the way a person functions, feels and thinks. Additionally, there are many different kinds of depression, such as major depressive disorder, persistent depressive disorder, etc.

    A person may also experience a variety of symptoms if they are depressed. Some common symptoms of depression include restlessness, agitation, lower sex drive, oversleeping or insomnia, thoughts of suicide or death, tiredness, etc.

    depression and anxiety together

    How Can You Tell the Difference Between Anxiety and Depression?

    It can often be difficult for many people to spot the difference between depression and anxiety because the symptoms can be similar. While most people think the main difference may be stress and sadness, the symptoms can still overlap, and a person can have both conditions.

    For a simple marker, anxiety is usually defined by worry about the long-term or immediate future. Uncontrollable thoughts that something would go wrong may also disrupt a person’s life, even if nothing is wrong.

    For depression, a simple mental marker would be thoughts of thinking that the future is hopeless, worthlessness, etc. People with depression may also assume that things will not get better, for the world, themselves, or their relationships.

    Additionally, people with depression no longer take delight to things and activities they previously enjoy doing. They also feel hopeless or down most of the day, almost every day.

    Experience Depression and Anxiety Together

    While there are differences between the two conditions, a person can have both at the same time. Around 45% of people that have one mental health condition can also have one or more other conditions. So, many people who get diagnosed with anxiety can often be diagnosed with depression, and vice versa.

    For instance, anxiety can be a symptom of major depression. Additionally, depression can get triggered by a kind of anxiety disorder.

    When a person has both conditions, they may have mixed feelings. They may have brief periods of feeling anxious. Then the next they may feel very down on their luck. They may experience feelings of being worried about things yet feeling as though they are unable to do anything about it.

    If you get diagnosed with both conditions, some common symptoms can occur. You may have impaired sleep because you might oversleep on some days whereas you may not be able to sleep on other days. Additionally, irritability is a common symptom that people with both conditions may have.

    What Happens if You Ignore It?

    There are some side effects when you ignore either or both conditions. For instance, if you ignore your symptoms of anxiety, you can develop depression. Untreated depression can also lead to anxiety.

    For anxiety and depression, both conditions can lead to suicidal behavior or thoughts along with substance abuse. Additionally, both conditions can weaken the immune system which could make a person more prone to infections. Additionally, these conditions can make a person feel fatigued or tired.

    What Is the Difference Between Clinical and Situational Depression?

    How Can I Treat It?

    If you experience depression and anxiety together, it would always be best to seek professional help to help you with your symptoms of one or both conditions. A professional could help you determine the cause and what treatment would be ideal for you.

    However, there are still many other proactive ways to help treat your conditions while you get professional help. For instance, knowing that it is not your fault you are feeling that way is a good way to acknowledge and accept your feelings. While this may be hard, it is also good to try to realize that you need help and a little push to feel better.

    You may also feel overwhelmed or feel like you cannot do anything, so you can do something you have control over. For instance, you can do a small task like washing the dishes or making your bed. While they are small things, they can help you feel like you have control over your life.

    Creating a routine and sticking to it can help you look forward to new things and help you feel more productive. While it may be difficult to get used to a new routine, it could help you feel more active.

    Finding healthy coping mechanisms is also a great way to help you manage your anxiety and depression. For instance, you can try jogging, using a stress ball, listening to your favorite music, etc.

    Key Takeaways

    Depression and anxiety together can occur in some people. It is important to know more about these conditions and learn how you can treat them to improve your quality of life. You can try to address issues on your own. However, it is recommended to consult a professional to safely deal with any underlying concerns.

    Learn more about a Healthy Mind here.

    Hello Health Group does not provide medical advice, diagnosis or treatment.


    Social anxiety disorder (social phobia) – Symptoms and causes – Mayo Clinic, https://www.mayoclinic.org/diseases-conditions/social-anxiety-disorder/symptoms-causes/syc-20353561, Accessed June 18, 2020

    Depression (major depressive disorder) – Symptoms and causes – Mayo Clinic, https://www.mayoclinic.org/diseases-conditions/depression/symptoms-causes/syc-20356007, Accessed June 18, 2020

    Persistent depressive disorder (dysthymia) – Symptoms and causes – Mayo Clinic, https://www.mayoclinic.org/diseases-conditions/persistent-depressive-disorder/symptoms-causes/syc-20350929, Accessed June 18, 2020

    Depression and anxiety: Can I have both? – Mayo Clinic, https://www.mayoclinic.org/diseases-conditions/depression/expert-answers/depression-and-anxiety/faq-20057989, Accessed June 18, 2020

    NIMH » Questions and Answers about the National Comorbidity Survey Replication (NCSR) Study, https://www.nimh.nih.gov/health/topics/ncsr-study/questions-and-answers-about-the-national-comorbidity-survey-replication-ncsr-study.shtml, Accessed June 18, 2020

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    Written by Tracey Romero Updated Jun 14, 2021
    Fact Checked by Hello Doctor Medical Panel
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