Advertisement

What is the depressive realism hypothesis?

Dr. Mehmet Oz, MD
Cardiology (Cardiovascular Disease)
According to Nassir Ghaemi, a professor of psychiatry at Tufts University School of Medicine and author of A First-Rate Madness: Uncovering the Links Between Leadership and Mental Illness, which examines the mental health of famous leaders, the depressive realism hypothesis argues that "[depressed people] are depressed because they see reality more clearly than other people do."

This may explain why one study showed that persons with a history of depressive symptoms usually score higher on tests for standard measures of empathy than a nondepressed cohort of college students. “This was the case even when patients were not currently depressed but had experienced depression in the past,” Ghaemi writes. “Depression seems to prepare the mind for a long-term habit of appreciating others' point of view.”
This content originally appeared on doctoroz.com

Continue Learning about Depression

Treatment Breakthrough: Depression Is a Whole Body Disorder
Treatment Breakthrough: Depression Is a Whole Body Disorder
When Milwaukee Bucks center Larry Sanders walked away from a $44 million contract (with a substantial buyout) in 2015, he knew it was time to face -- ...
Read More
What is a depressive episode?
World Federation For Mental Health (WFMH)World Federation For Mental Health (WFMH)
A depressive episode involves symptoms such as depressed mood, loss of interest and enjoyment, and i...
More Answers
9 Things Everyone Should Know About Depression (Even If You're Not Depressed)
9 Things Everyone Should Know About Depression (Even If You're Not Depressed)9 Things Everyone Should Know About Depression (Even If You're Not Depressed)9 Things Everyone Should Know About Depression (Even If You're Not Depressed)9 Things Everyone Should Know About Depression (Even If You're Not Depressed)
It can aggravate pain and make heart disease and diabetes worse—and that’s just to start.
Start Slideshow
How Can Drinking Tea Help Relieve Stress?
How Can Drinking Tea Help Relieve Stress?

Important: This content reflects information from various individuals and organizations and may offer alternative or opposing points of view. It should not be used for medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. As always, you should consult with your healthcare provider about your specific health needs.