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Burnout or Depression?

‘Burnout’ is a term used a lot these days. It is certainly a psychological condition that can can cause exhaustion, lack of enthusiasm and motivation. The word was originally described in the 1970s as the “extinction of motivation or incentive, especially where one’s devotion to a cause or relationship fails to produce the desired results.”

Burnout is usually separated from depression, but new research finds they can be similar. The research focussed on teachers in the USA and every person reporting burnout also reported depressive symptoms as 10 per cent of the women and 7 per cent of the men in the study suffered from from burnout. Also, 10 per cent of each of those groups probably suffered from depression as every person reporting burnout also reported depressive symptoms.

Recognising and treating burnout

Burnout is on the increase. The World Health Organisation estimates approximately 450 million people have a mental health a problem. One of the most common mental health problems is Depression. Depression affects people of every age, background and ethnicity. Depression is not a single, ‘one-size-fits-all’ condition either. It has many different causes, the symptoms are sometimes difficult to understand but they sometimes be severe. Because depression can affect us without being aware of it, feelings of burnout could even be a symptom of depression.

We can take action over burnout and depression and find treatment. You might think a vacation is all you need and are less likely to seek professional help than someone with depression. Because the people in the study were not assessed about having depression, talking with your doctor is a good idea if you feel any of those symptoms. Talking it over with your doctor is a positive way to fully understand what is happening to you.

At Retreat South we recognise work related stress is an all too real part of our daily lives now. We have special programs to help you deal with work stress as well as specialists and programs to treat depression and anxiety.

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