What Is Feeling Depressed Or Unhappy?

When someone is feeling depressed or unhappy, it refers to experiencing a state of low mood, sadness, and emotional distress.

It’s a common human experience that can range from mild and temporary bouts of sadness, which can then lead to more severe and persistent feelings of despair. Depression and unhappiness can impact various aspects of a person’s life, including their thoughts, emotions, behaviours, and physical well-being.

Key characteristics include:

  • Persistent Sadness: Feeling down or blue most of the time, often without a clear reason, and finding it difficult to experience joy or pleasure in activities that were once enjoyable.
  • Loss of Interest: Losing interest or motivation in activities, hobbies, or relationships that were previously meaningful or engaging.
  • Fatigue and Low Energy: Experiencing constant fatigue, low energy levels, and finding it challenging to carry out daily tasks.
  • Changes in Sleep Patterns: Having trouble sleeping (insomnia) or sleeping excessively (hypersomnia) can be common symptoms of depression.
  • Changes in Appetite: Significant changes in appetite, leading to weight loss or gain, may occur during depressive episodes.
  • Difficulty Concentrating: Struggling to focus, make decisions, or remember things. This cognitive impairment can be frustrating and impact daily functioning.
  • Feelings of Worthlessness or Guilt: Experiencing a sense of worthlessness, guilt, or self-blame, even when there’s no apparent reason for these feelings.
  • Physical Symptoms: Depression can manifest with physical symptoms such as headaches, body aches, digestive issues, and general discomfort.
  • Social Withdrawal: Withdrawing from social interactions and isolating oneself from friends, family, and social activities.
  • Thoughts of Death or Suicide: In severe cases, individuals might have thoughts of death, dying, or even suicidal thoughts. If you or someone you know is experiencing these thoughts, seeking help is crucial.

It’s important to note that while feeling unhappy or down occasionally is a normal part of life, prolonged and intense feelings of depression can be indicative of a clinical condition known as major depressive disorder (MDD). This is a serious mental health condition that requires professional evaluation and treatment.

Many people sometimes brush these feelings under the carpet, with the idea that they are just going through a bad spell, however, it is always best to monitor yourself honestly and to remember that is never embarrassing or shameful to admit that you may be depressed.  If you or someone you know is struggling with depression, seeking support from a mental health professional, such as a therapist or psychiatrist, is highly recommended.


What are the statistics on feeling depressed or unhappy in the UK?

Below are some general statistics related to depression and unhappiness in the UK up to September 2021. However, please note that these statistics might have changed since then. For the most current and accurate information, I recommend checking official government sources, reputable research organizations, or mental health agencies in the UK.

In the UK, mental health issues, including depression and unhappiness, have been significant concerns.


Key statistics include:

Prevalence of Depression: According to the Office for National Statistics (ONS) in 2020, around 19% of adults in the UK showed signs of depression during the COVID-19 pandemic, which was a notable increase from pre-pandemic levels.

Young People and Mental Health: The mental health of young people has been a particular concern. In 2020, research from the ONS indicated that one in six children aged 5 to 16 in the UK had a probable mental disorder, with emotional disorders (including depression) being one of the main categories.

Gender Differences: Historically, women have been reported to experience higher rates of depression than men. This trend has been observed in the UK as well, with women being more likely to report experiencing symptoms of depression.

Access to Mental Health Services: Access to mental health services has been an ongoing challenge. Waiting times for accessing psychological therapies, such as cognitive-behavioral therapy (CBT), have been a concern.

Impact of the COVID-19 Pandemic: The pandemic has had a significant impact on mental health worldwide, and the UK is no exception. Lockdowns, social isolation, economic uncertainty, and health-related concerns have contributed to increased feelings of depression and unhappiness for many individuals.

Suicide Rates: While not directly related to feelings of unhappiness or depression, suicide rates are often considered an indicator of mental health issues. As of my last update, suicide rates in the UK had been fluctuating, and efforts to reduce them remained a priority.

Remember that these statistics provide a general overview and snapshot of the situation up to 2021. If you’re looking for the most recent and accurate statistics on depression and unhappiness in the UK, we recommend checking the latest reports from government health agencies, mental health organizations, and research institutions in the country.


Helpful Contacts:

If you or someone you know is feeling depressed or unhappy in the UK, it’s important to reach out for help and support. There are several resources available for seeking assistance:

General Practitioner (GP): Your first point of contact should be your GP. They can provide an initial assessment, offer guidance, and refer you to appropriate mental health services if needed. They might recommend therapies, medications, or other forms of treatment.

NHS Mental Health Services: The National Health Service (NHS) offers a range of mental health services. You can find information about local mental health services on the NHS website or by contacting your local NHS trust.

IAPT Services: The Improving Access to Psychological Therapies (IAPT) program offers evidence-based therapies for common mental health issues, including depression. These services are available through the NHS and can be accessed through your GP.

Mental Health Charities: Several mental health charities in the UK offer information, resources, and helplines for individuals experiencing depression and other mental health challenges. Some prominent ones include Mind (www.mind.org.uk) and Samaritans (www.samaritans.org).

Helplines and Crisis Support: If you’re in crisis or need someone to talk to immediately, helplines such as Samaritans (116 123) offer 24/7 emotional support. Shout (text “SHOUT” to 85258) is another text-based crisis helpline.

Online Resources: The NHS website and other reputable mental health websites provide information on depression, self-help strategies, and where to seek help.

Private Mental Health Services: If you prefer private care, you can explore options for seeing a private therapist or psychiatrist. Keep in mind that private services may involve costs that are not covered by the NHS.

Local Community Services: Some local community organizations and support groups offer spaces for individuals to connect, share experiences, and receive support. These can be found through community centers, libraries, or online platforms.

Remember, reaching out for help is a sign of strength, and there are many people and resources available to support you during difficult times. If you’re concerned about yourself or someone else, don’t hesitate to take the first step and seek assistance.