Difference Between Stress and Depression

Nowadays, Stress and Depression have become common words and we often come to hear about them.

But, do we know what do they resemble? So, here we will talk about everything in detail on Stress and Depression. We can also say that both the terms are interrelated to each other as well.

Stress vs Depression

The main difference between Stress and Depression is their origin. We can term that Stress is not a disorder but it can be on if the triggering aspects of it. And, on the other hand, Depression refers to a mental disorder that severely affects mental as well as physical health.

Stress vs Depression

Stress is the feeling of being pressured by some personal issues, illness, etc. Stress depends upon person to person and hence it has become a part of almost everyone’s life.

But, too much stress can lead to something severe and even dangerous.

On the other hand, Depression or also known as Major Depressive Disorder (MDD) is a serious health condition.

Feeling low, unhappy, uninterested, etc are some typical parts of its diagnosis. And it remains for quite a long time and hence affecting the patient in the long term.

Comparison Table Between Stress and Depression

Parameters of ComparisonStressDepression
TimeStress is a short-term effect and hence vanishes quickly. Depression majorly affects the person and hence it is a long-term effect.
TypesStress can be identified into three types and are Acute Stress, Episodic Stress, and Chronic Stress. The types of Depression are Major Depression, Premenstrual Dysphoric Disorder, Dysthymia, Depressive Psychosis, Postpartum Depression, and last but not least Seasonal Affective Disorder.
SymptomsStress is associated with several symptoms and they are like memory problems, headaches, sweating, issues while sleeping, insomnia, inability to concentrate, etc. The symptoms of depression are identified when the person feels unhappy, anti-social behavior, crying, suicidal tendency, etc.
Severness Stress is not that severe. Depression is way more severe than Stress.
ImportanceWhen someone talks about stress, the opposite person ends up responding negatively.Depression is often not ignored by people and hence they get a positive response from people.

What is Stress?

In simple terms, if we need to define stress then we can say that stress is the feeling of tension that makes you feel nervous and anxious at the same time.

Minimal stress in life might not affect your mind but if that minimal stress gradually starts to turn into severe negative feelings then that becomes intense and a fact to be worried about.

It can affect our mind and body. We won’t be able to cope up with normal things. Slight stress is good and we can even say that it keeps us running and our tasks are accomplished at accurate time.

People come to know that they are fighting against stress when some symptoms are seen in them and they are things such as headaches, nervousness, insomnia, memory problem, inability to concentrate on several tasks, sweating, etc.

And the best way to overcome such things or stress, in general, is by meditating, yoga, exercise, journaling, etc and if the stress is severe then they can take medications as per their specialists.

The best specialists to go are Psychiatrists, Psychologists, and Counselors.

Stress is subdivided into three types depending upon their levels and is Acute Stress, Episodic Stress, and Chronic Stress.

Generally, people are not concerned with Stress and they think it’s normal to have stress but, when stress majorly impacts our stress then it’s time to get rid of it as it can pull our self-confidence in important places.

What is Depression?

Nowadays, the term Depression has become common amongst everyone. And about 3% of the world’s population is facing this.

Depression is a mental disorder where the person is not capable of doing anything and hence becomes anti-social.

They feel unhappy, feel like crying, have suicidal thoughts, anti-social behavior, etc and we can term these as its symptoms.

Depression is a long-term effect that can remain for several months or sometimes even years.

Nowadays it has become common in between people and therefore there is no age limitation for depressions. The reasons for each person are different from each other.

There are six types of Depressions and each type of Depression depends upon its causes, reasons for emergence, medications, therapies, symptoms, etc.

We should not ignore any of them as if required medical help should be provided to the person. It is very important to consult a doctor.

There are several methods to cure depression and they are various therapies, medications, and other Medical Procedures and these should be done with proper guidance from the specialist.

A few Specialists who looks after Depression are Clinical Psychologist, Primary Care Provider (PCP), Psychiatrist, and Emergency Medicine Doctor.

Main Differences Between Stress and Depression

  1. Stress leads to a short-term effect upon a person’s life while on the other hand, depression causes long-term effects.
  2. Stress has been subdivided into three types are Acute Stress, Episodic Stress, and Chronic Stress. On the other hand, Major Depression, Dysthymia, Seasonal Affective Disorder, Depressive Psychosis, Postpartum Depression, and Premenstrual Dysphoric Disorder are the major categories of Depression.
  3. Memory problems, headaches, sweating, issues while sleeping, insomnia, inability to concentrate, etc are the symptoms by which we can determine stress while on the other hand, depression includes severe symptoms like unhappiness, Stress, feelings like crying for no reason, unable to take active participation in various activities, suicidal thoughts, anti-social behavior, etc
  4. Stress is comparatively less severe while on the other hand, Depression affects majorly and hence it is severe.
  5. People don’t give that much importance to stress and end up giving negative vibes to the victim while on the other hand, depression is known by everyone, and therefore the surrounding people try to help the patient.
Difference Between Stress and Depression


Stress and Depression are the concerns related mainly to our mental health. Stress and Depression are crucial topics but people never give importance to stress as they give it to depression.

Little stress is normal but when a person feels too much stress then everything starts worsening. But, stress is not that severe like depression where people have suicidal tendencies.

Both, the conditions have medications, therapy, specialists as well. And if one thinks they can not overcome stress or depression by themselves then they should consult a Specialist before the cases become worse.


  1. https://www.annualreviews.org/doi/abs/10.1146/annurev.clinpsy.1.102803.143938
  2. https://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S0278584604000892
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