What is high-functioning depression, hosted by Wellin5 Canadian online counsellors

What is high-functioning depression?

Everyone experiences depression differently. For people experiencing high-functioning depression, it may seem like they’re living a normal and fufilling life. 

They go to work, spend time with friends and family, and go about there day as if nothing is wrong. Through it all, they’re dealing with the difficulties of depression such as low mood, a lack of energy, and many other symptoms. 

If that sounds like you, know that your depression is a serious mental health issue that is treatable. Your struggle is real and help is available. 

Building a better understanding of high-functioning depression

The term “high-functioning depression” isn’t a distinct clinical diagnosis, however. It’s more of a simple way to describe the issues that some individuals face when dealing with a specific type of depressive disorder named dysthymia (also called persistent depressive disorder).

As Psychology Today explains, dysthymia is distinct from major depressive disorder (MDD, also called clinical depression). It can persist for years, taking the enjoyment and excitement out of so many of the things we enjoy each day. 

High-functioning depression symptoms differ from what’s commonly seen with MDD. Instead of a near-total absence of energy and motivation, dysthymia can leave some people feeling mostly empty and exhausted, but still able to move through their daily lives. 

Dysthymia doesn’t always have a clear source or trigger, which can make it more frustrating to deal with. People with high-functioning depression may even experience anxiety over when their next set of symptoms will appear. 

If you’re experiencing similar problems, we want to help. You don’t have to deal with this mental health condition on your own.

Finding help for high-functioning depression: the value of counselling

If you struggle with this form of depression, you might think it’s not worth the time to find treatment. You may even feel that people facing more severe symptoms from this medical condition should have priority for counselling.

However, neither of those feelings could be further from the truth. You deserve to have access to personalized treatment and support that leads you back toward a more enjoyable and engaging life.

Counsellors can help you talk through issues that feel too difficult or complex to face alone. These open, honest, and supportive conversations can make a major difference. Specific types of therapy, such as cognitive behavioural therapy (CBT) and psychodynamic therapy (PT), have shown to lead to positive treatment outcomes. 

Effective treatment will be different for everyone but knowledgeable mental health professionals are able to assess your situation individually and create a treatment plan designed to address your needs.
Our counsellors are equipped to help you deal with any symptoms of high-functioning depression, giving you the support you need to feel better.