Morning Depression

Understanding the Phenomenon of Morning Depression

Morning Depression

Most people can also tell when they or a person close to them is grumpy for a time or when they are displaying symptoms of depression over a significant period of time. 

There is, however, another type of depression that is not well known. It is known as morning depression.

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What Is Morning Depression?

This is a form of depression that is felt specifically in the first hours of the day. Scientifically, the morning depression phenomenon is called Diurnal Mood Variation. 

Typically, it then fades away as the day goes on. People who have it tend to have good energy levels in the afternoon and evening.

What Does Morning Depression Feel Like?

Morning depression brings on the same feelings that are experienced with general depression.

It causes feelings of:

  • Deep sadness
  • Feelings of despair and hopelessness
  • Wanting to stay in bed or stay indoors rather than getting up to start the day
  • A feeling that the mind is weighed down 
  • Feelings of unhappiness even if the previous and other days went well and ended on a good note.

It is typical to feel grumpy, tired, or just want to keep on sleeping if you didn’t sleep well the previous night.

This may be because you went to bed late, couldn’t fall asleep until much later or it was too hot, cold, or otherwise uncomfortable for you.

Morning Depression Symptoms

How Does Morning Depression Feel Like?

However, if you wake up with the symptoms above despite a good night’s sleep and having had a good day in the later hours of the day, there is a problem.

This is one of the factors that is taken into consideration for a patient to be diagnosed with morning depression.

What Causes Morning Depression?

Research has provided insights into some of the causes of morning depression.

They include:

  • Hypoglycemia

This is the medical term for blood sugar levels. This physical symptom can affect mental functions and manifest in form of the feeling of being down and unmotivated to start the day.

Blood sugar drops gradually during sleep. If you don’t eat regular, healthy meals, you may wake to feel weak but it may go to your head, so to speak, and make you feel down too.

You can get the causes of morning depression treated– Click below to schedule your appointment with a mental health professional.

Eating a lot of refined carbohydrates and drinking a lot of sweet beverages causes a sugar rush. 

The excess sugar from refined foods will make you feel tired and lethargic as the body struggles to process it and stabilize blood sugar levels. 

Also, the rush is overtaken by a crash not too long after which causes a significant drop in blood sugar. This can cause feelings of anxiety and depression.

  • Non-Conducive Sleeping Conditions

Constant sleep interference may also cause morning depression.

The interference may be caused by weather conditions such as very low or high temperatures or an illness that causes one to frequently wake up at night.

It may also be a situation that cannot be helped such as waking up at night to take care of an infant or invalid.  

  • Reluctance to Face and Resolve Situations

Morning depression can also be caused by being aware of but unwilling to confront and resolve an ongoing situation that is stressful or that causes anxiety.

This can be a difficult job or colleague, a difficult person in the household or elsewhere, or an upcoming event that is dreaded.

Going to bed thinking about it will make you understandably reluctant to wake up and deal with it in the morning.


The Easiest Ways to Overcome Morning Depression

Based on the causes of morning depression above, taking the following steps can help resolve the problem:

  • Doing a Health Audit

You may think you eat well but there may be specific problems you need to address.

You may not have obvious signs of compromised health like being overweight or having high blood pressure.

Still, your cholesterol levels may be high, your bones may be weakening if you are older or you may have other hidden symptoms. A good place to start would be with a thorough health check.

Based on the findings, your healthcare provider will detail the steps you need to take in terms of diet and exercise. Most people find they wake up feeling healthy and energetic in the morning.

Morning Depression Treatment

Effective Therapies for Morning Depression

  • Creating a Positive Sleep Experience

To find a possible answer to the question of why do you wake up depressed, consider your routine in terms of how you wind up your day before you go to bed.

Ideally, the evening should find you doing relaxing activities. It could be gentle, stretching exercises, soaking in a bath, watching TV, or whatever you enjoy.

Pay attention to where you sleep too. Invest in new, cozy bedding and re-do your bedroom furniture to upgrade it and create a haven of a bedroom.  There is plenty of inspiration for room makeovers online.

  • Face Your Demons

As difficult as it is, you will need to confront a stressful situation if it is robbing you of sleep.

It is better to face it, accept it, and take steps to resolve it rather than deal with morning depression day after day. Sometimes, it may develop into general depression [1*] or another condition like high anxiety.

If there is danger in facing a person or addressing a situation, seek help or advice so you don’t do it alone. 

Perhaps you are a new mother who is overwhelmed with child care and house chores.

Ask for help from your partner, friends, and relatives.

Consider getting paid help too such as daycare for an older child or weekly or bi-weekly cleaning services to tackle chores. Get the help that you need.

There is a range of effective treatments and health professionals who can help people with depression and its types- Click below to schedule your appointment.

EZCare Is Here for You

Based in San Fransico, EZCare Clinic is a full-service clinic staffed by licensed, experienced, and dedicated doctors. This includes a team of psychologists who provide mental health services.

They diagnose and treat different kinds of depression, anxiety, stress, and other conditions that take a toll on mental health.

The clinic accepts appointments which can be done online. 

Get in touch and get on the path to understanding and getting over morning depression with a non-judgemental, dedicated doctor.


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Evidence Based

This article is based on scientific evidence, written by experts and fact checked by experts.

Our team of experts strive to be objective, unbiased, honest and to present both sides of the argument.

This article contains scientific references. The numbers
in the parentheses (1, 2, 3) are clickable links to peer-reviewed scientific papers.