The difference between grief and depression

The difference between grief and depression

Distinguishing between grief and clinical depression isn’t always easy as they share many symptoms, but there are ways to tell the difference. Remember, grief can be a roller coaster. It involves a wide variety of emotions and a mix of good and bad days. Even when you’re in the middle of the grieving process, you will have moments of pleasure or happiness. With depression, on the other hand, the feelings of emptiness and despair are constant.


While loss affects people in different ways, many experience the following symptoms when they’re grieving. Just remember that almost anything that you experience in the early stages of grief is normal—including feeling like you’re going crazy, feeling like you’re in a bad dream, or questioning your religious beliefs.
Shock and disbelief Sadness Guilt Anger Fear Physical – fatigue, nausea, lowered immunity, weight loss or weight gain, aches and pains, and insomnia.


When someone we know experiences a bereavement we naturally want to help them but it can often be difficult to know what to do. We offer advice about how to help friends or relatives who are grieving.
Here are some helpful tips:

  • Get in touch – As soon as you hear of the death call or visit them, it helps to hear or see a friendly face that can help.
  • Using the right words – do not be afraid if you can find the right words, sometimes we don’t need words, what about a hug or maybe a handshake, these signs of affection of a long way.
  • After the funeral – stay in touch; continue to be there for them when they need you.
  • Visiting – by visiting you can help do some of the jobs to help them relax, ironing, washing up, it can be anything just to lighten the load.
  • Sensitive – be sensitive to their feelings and reassure them that it’s ok for them to cry or show emotional signs of grieving and help them along the journey of grief.
  • The future – Help them socialise again, set new goals, and help them find new interests.