There are a number of different types of depression. The different types relate to your symptoms and the impact they are having on your depressive state.

They also help to understand what type of support you need.

Mild depression
This term is used when your depressive symptoms are having a limited negative effect on your daily life. For example you may be having difficulty concentrating at work or motivating yourself to do things you usually enjoy.

Major or severe depression
Major depression interferes with your daily life. It could be that you are unable to sleep, have no appetite or are struggling to do any of your daily activities. Major depression can come and go, with many people experiencing multiple episodes. It can lead to hospital admission if it is leading towards self-harm or suicidal episodes.

Bi-polar disorder
Bi-polar disorder is often evidenced by mood swings, which range from extreme highs, where you would feel indestructible and elated to extreme lows, where despair and suicidal thoughts become notable. These feelings often go side by side with utter confusion where you could struggle to make sense of your world and end up doing things that seem odd or illogical to other people.

Post-natal depression
Post-natal depression (often termed antenatal depression) is a more intense and longer term version of ‘baby blues’. Baby blues is what you may be feeling as a new mother a few days after birth and describes feelings of anxiety and low confidence as motherhood becomes a reality. In most cases this feeling only lasts a few weeks, however post-natal depression is much more severe, leaving you feeling completely overwhelmed, inadequate and unable to cope. You may be experiencing sleeping difficulties, panic attacks or an intense feeling of dying. You may even be experiencing negative thoughts and feelings towards your child.

Seasonal Affective Disorder (SAD)

Seasonal Affective Disorder (SAD) is a term used to describe feelings of anxiety, stress and depression during periods of the year where light is less and days are colder. SAD is often termed the ‘winter blues’ and may interfere with sleep and appetite.