Morning Depression: Read This If You Wake Up Depressed 

Do you wake up feeling depressed? It’s not just you. Feeling worse in the morning and then improving as the day goes on is a symptom of morning depression. But what causes morning depression, and how can you combat it? Read on for the answers.
morning depression

Waking up feeling exhausted and deprived of energy? You may be experiencing morning depression – a condition characterized by symptoms such as low mood, difficulty concentrating, lack of appetite or irritability. Although similar to regular depression in some ways, it is not necessarily associated with loss of interest in activities or social withdrawal.

To combat this ailment you can adopt healthy lifestyle measures like sticking to a sleep schedule; exercising regularly; eating breakfast each day; soaking up the light from sunlight and learning relaxation techniques. With these positive steps your mornings will soon shine brightly!

Possible Causes of Morning Depression

One possible explanation for morning depression is a disruption in circadian rhythms, which control our sleep-wake cycle and hormonal changes. Other factors, such as seasonal changes, stress and medication can also contribute to feeling depressed in the morning.

Diurnal Mood Variation

People with morning depression often experience what is known as diurnal mood variation, where their mood is at its worst in the morning and improves throughout the day. Studies show that there is a link between these mood variations and a weakened circadian rhythm. This means that the body’s internal clock is not functioning properly, and individuals may have trouble falling asleep or waking up at regular times.

Cortisol Awakening Response

The hormonal changes that occur in the morning, such as the cortisol awakening response, can play a role in morning depression. When we wake up, cortisol levels typically spike, giving us a burst of energy to start the day. But studies show that in people with major depressive disorder, this response might cause stress instead.

Poor Sleep Quality

Poor sleep quality can also contribute to morning depression. Sleep disturbances, such as difficulty falling or staying asleep, can make you feel groggy and low in the morning. This can also disrupt your circadian rhythm, leading to further problems.

possible causes of morning depression

Symptoms of Morning Depression

Many people grapple with feelings of depression when they wake up, whether in the form of low energy and an inability to face day-to-day tasks or a persistent sadness lingering in their chest. While some find themselves better off come evening time, many still feel weighed down by morning blues that can include lack of motivation, negative emotions like hopelessness or helplessness as well as difficulty concentrating on anything but these somber moods. Other symptoms may include:

  • difficulty concentrating;
  • loss of appetite;
  • feeling irritable or restless.

Unlike regular depression, morning depression may not necessarily cause a loss of interest in activities or withdraw from social situations. Because the mood improves throughout the day, individuals may still be able to function in their daily activities and maintain relationships.

How Common Is Waking Up Depressed in the Morning?

There aren’t any statistics on morning depression specifically, but studies show that diurnal mood variations often occur in people with major depressive disorder who are starting to see improvement with treatment. They might gradually go from feeling depressed all the time to only feeling worse in the morning or evening.

Editor’s Note

Every morning, I wake up feeling a little bit down. I know I’m not alone in this, so I decided to try something new to help me cope. I started doing some mental exercises to help lift my mood and get me ready for the day.
I start by focusing on my breathing. I take slow, deep breaths and count to five as I inhale and exhale. Then, I take some time to think about three things I’m grateful for. This helps me to focus on the positive and shift my mindset.

Is Morning Depression in the DSM-5?

No, morning depression is not listed as a specific disorder in the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders (DSM-5). It’s considered a symptom of major depressive disorder, and may also be seen in bipolar disorder. Likewise, the International Classification of Diseases (ICD-10) lists “depression worst in the morning” as a symptom of a depressive episode.

How to Cope With Morning Depression?

If morning depression is affecting your daily functioning, it’s important to seek help. Your doctor or therapist can work with you to develop a treatment plan that may include medication, therapy, and lifestyle changes. Here are some tips for managing morning depression:

  • Stick to a regular sleep schedule and establish a morning routine. Try to make it pleasant so that you have something to look forward to in the morning.
  • Exercise, especially in the morning. Physical activity can help improve mood and regulate sleep patterns.
  • Eat a balanced breakfast, as low blood sugar can contribute to morning depression.
  • Consider light therapy in the morning, as morning sunlight may help improve your mood and regulate circadian rhythm.
  • Practice stress management and relaxation techniques, such as deep breathing or mindfulness meditation.
  • Limit caffeine and alcohol consumption. Both can disrupt sleep and worsen morning depression symptoms.

If you stick to a treatment plan and make positive changes, morning depression can improve. Remember to be patient with yourself and always seek support from loved ones or a mental health professional. With help, you can start your days feeling happier and more energized.

how to cope with morning depression

Is a Morning Walk Good for Depression?

Research shows that morning exercise, such as a morning walk, can help improve mood and manage depressive symptoms. It’s also worth noting that morning exercise can also improve sleep quality and regulate circadian rhythm, both of which can contribute to morning depression.

Therefore, a morning walk may be helpful for managing morning depression, but it’s also important to work with a healthcare provider to create an individualized treatment plan.

Why Is Depression Stronger in the Morning?

As the day begins anew, it can be easy to feel overwhelmed and despondent. Hormones, sleep patterns and stress levels may all play a role in morning depression – pressure from new tasks or responsibilities being just one of many triggers for feelings of worry or frustration that come with starting a fresh 24 hours.


For many people, starting the day can be difficult and challenging. This experience is commonly known as morning depression which can make it hard to complete even the most ordinary of tasks. While this isn’t an official medical diagnosis on its own, seeking help from a healthcare provider could lead you towards positive change – medication if necessary or therapy along with lifestyle habits such as exercise might just do wonders for your mental wellbeing in those first few hours!

morning depression faqs

Frequently Asked Questions

Why Do I Feel Worse in the Morning?

Despite the promise of a fresh start in the morning, many people find themselves feeling anxious throughout their day. This could be due to your body’s cortisol production – an automatic stress response like an alarm clock that goes off too early! Though it may take some effort, finding ways to reduce this natural anxiety can help make waking up more pleasant and peaceful for everyone.

Is It OK to Wake Up Sad?

It is normal to wake up feeling sad sometimes. It is important to recognize that these feelings are valid and take time to process them. Talking to a friend or a professional can be helpful in dealing with these feelings.

Why Is Anxiety Worse in the Morning?

If you struggle with feelings of anxiety when waking up, it could be rooted in your body’s natural fluctuations. Cortisol is a hormone released during times of stress and its levels peak early each morning-creating an underlying wave of unease that can make mornings more difficult than other parts of the day.

How Do I Control My Morning Anxiety?

There are several steps you can take to help manage your morning anxiety. Taking deep breaths, engaging in mindfulness activities, and exercising can help reduce anxiety. Additionally, talking to a professional can be beneficial in managing anxiety.

How to Take Magnesium for Anxiety?

Magnesium is a mineral that can help reduce anxiety. It can be taken in supplement form or through foods like spinach, legumes, nuts, and seeds. Taking magnesium before bed may help to reduce anxiety symptoms. Additionally, it is important to consult with a doctor before beginning any new supplement regimen.

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