Low Mood Isn't Always Depression- Here Are Some Other Causes

Low Mood Isn't Always Depression- Here Are Some Other Causes

There’s nothing worse than feeling down in the dumps, but a low mood is something we all experience from time to time. And when we’re feeling tearful and forlorn, many of us can be quick to assume that we might be suffering with some form of mental health issue such as depression. Thankfully, mental health is now spoken about more openly and is no longer a ‘taboo’ topic, so more people than ever now feel comfortable speaking to their doctor if they’re struggling. But it’s important not to assume or self diagnose. As humans we’re designed to feel a full spectrum of emotions, and sadness is one of these. In many cases, these feelings will pass in their own due course and are just part of the human experience. If your emotions are ongoing, severe or you’re worried then be sure to seek help- but if it’s a new or mild issue then here are a few things it could actually be instead.

Menstrual cycle

If you keep track of your menstrual cycle then it’s easy to figure out if your hormones are playing a role in your mood. In the second half of your cycle after ovulation (which is known as the luteal phase) you experience a drop in estrogen and a rise in the hormone progesterone which can cause symptoms of low mood in many women. It usually presents as feeling teary and over emotional, ratty and irritable or just feelings of being down in the dumps. If you start to feel progressively better after your period has arrived, you’ll know that your hormones are to blame. It’s not nice to deal with, but understanding what’s happening and being prepared for this shift can be helpful. Some mood changes are common, but if yours are severe or impact your life then do speak to your GP.

Lack of sleep

We all know how it feels to try and function on a lack of sleep. We’re fatigued and cranky, and every physical or mental tasks feels like the equivalent of trying to climb a mountain. It can generally leave you feeling disinterested and a little hopeless. If you’ve been going without proper sleep for long periods, you might not even realise that it’s taking its toll. If your mood is low, ask yourself what your sleep habits are like, as making changes here could make a huge difference.

External influences

Stress, anxiety and sadness are often normal reactions to things that are going on in our surroundings. Grief, heartbreak, exam stress, family issues, health problems- these can all cause us to experience some of the more negative emotions in the spectrum. Often, once the stressor passes, your mood will return to normal- but if it’s a particularly traumatic event, help such as neurofeedback, counselling or medication can help. When we’re in the midst of a stressful situation it’s easy to lose hope and assume that we’re going to feel this way forever, but it’s not true. Look after yourself, be patient and seek help if you need it. But know that emotions and situations are temporary, life will always work out in your favour in the end.

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Health Magazine: Low Mood Isn't Always Depression- Here Are Some Other Causes
Low Mood Isn't Always Depression- Here Are Some Other Causes
Feeling unhappy isn't always the reason of depression or other mental illness. Sometimes some small health change or incident can make you feel down. Here are some behind the scene reasons for your low mood.
Health Magazine
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