Depression and anxiety: What makes them different? A doctor’s take

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A group of researchers including Dr. Nancy Anoruo, Dr. Mayank Saxena, and Dr. Gustavo Campos sought to understand the distinction between depression and anxiety by consulting with various medical professionals. Interestingly, each doctor provided different definitions and symptoms for the two conditions. According to Dr. Anoruo, anxiety can manifest as temporary worry or a more persistent psychiatric disorder, while depression is often used colloquially to describe sadness but is defined by specific symptoms such as a depressed or irritable mood, loss of interest or pleasure, and thoughts of death or suicide.

Dr. Saxena, an Indian MBBS doctor, characterized depression as a persistent feeling of sadness accompanied by decreased energy, loss of interest in activities, and sleep difficulties, while anxiety is fearfulness in response to stressful situations, which can cause symptoms such as dizziness, sweating, rapid breathing, and irritability.

Finally, Dr. Campos, a Brazilian doctor, defined depression as feelings of melancholy, worthlessness, and a loss of energy and interest in activities, and anxiety as excessive and uncontrollable worry and apprehension about uncertain future events. It should be noted that this information is for educational purposes only and should not be considered a substitute for medical advice from a professional.

The opinions expressed are those of the individual doctors and not representative of Microsoft. If you have any concerns about your health, please seek professional medical attention.