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Sadness and depression can be easily confused. These 10 tweets show there's a difference.

It's very common to not know the difference between sadness and depression.

Sadness and depression can be easily confused. These 10 tweets show there's a difference.

We all get sad once in a while. When that happens, some of us take to social media to let the world in on our sorrows.

While some may take that like a virtual invitation to a one-person pity party, others may interpret it as someone who genuinely needs to vent about feeling down and out.

Image by iStock.


The hashtag #IGetDepressedWhen was unleashed and started trending on Aug. 31.

At first, users took to the hashtag with silly and essentially harmless commentary. One user tweeted, "#IGetDepressedWhen I open my paycheck."

Another read, "#IGetDepressedWhen I go to the fridge with my cup ready in hand to fill it with some quality koolaid but the pitcher is empty in the fridge."

These types of tweets struck a nerve with people who felt depression was being trivialized.

The discussion quickly took a telling turn from witty confessions about mild inconveniences to more serious discussions about the difference between feeling sad and being clinically depressed.

Here are 10 tweets that stood out in the conversation:

1. Some didn't like the word "depressed" being used so casually.

2. Or that a disease was being referred to as an emotion.

3. Or were feeling like Liv...

4. Others like Alex Phillips were put off by the trending hashtag — period.

Users like @GennaBain, @autwizzle, and @biebersjuarez, agreed.

5. Many wanted to make sure depression was being taken seriously.

6. Because it's NOT a joke.

7. By pointing out depression is not a choice.

8. Even suggesting perhaps a more fitting hashtag.

9. Or asking that the word "depression" not be used willy-nilly.

10. And a simple yet powerful reminder to have compassion and not turn this mental disorder into a joke.

There is a difference between feeling sad and being clinically depressed.

We tend to associate depression with its primary symptom (sadness), so for a lot of us, it's difficult to tell the difference.

Scientifically speaking, the difference is depression is a result of a chemical imbalance. People diagnosed with this mental disorder have less seratonin neurotransmitters, which produce what are often referred to as the "feel-good chemical."

But there are other factors. Genetics, stress, medications, or other health issues can also contribute to someone developing this neurological disease.

Image by iStock.

These Twitter reactions were a great reminder that we should think twice before claiming we're depressed when we could just be having a bad day.

Sure it's a go-to term for a lot of people who are bummed about something fleeting, but maybe by avoiding using it so sparingly, we can also avoid hurting each other's feelings.

To be clear, everyone's feelings deserve to be acknowledged and validated. Above all, this thread is a comforting reminder that if you suffer from this mental disorder, you're definitely not alone.  

When "bobcat" trended on Twitter this week, no one anticipated the unreal series of events they were about to witness. The bizarre bobcat encounter was captured on a security cam video and...well...you just have to see it. (Read the following description if you want to be prepared, or skip down to the video if you want to be surprised. I promise, it's a wild ride either way.)

In a North Carolina neighborhood that looks like a present-day Pleasantville, a man carries a cup of coffee and a plate of brownies out to his car. "Good mornin!" he calls cheerfully to a neighbor jogging by. As he sets his coffee cup on the hood of the car, he says, "I need to wash my car." Well, shucks. His wife enters the camera frame on the other side of the car.

So far, it's just about the most classic modern Americana scene imaginable. And then...

A horrifying "rrrrawwwww!" Blood-curdling screaming. Running. Panic. The man abandons the brownies, races to his wife's side of the car, then emerges with an animal in his hands. He holds the creature up like Rafiki holding up Simba, then yells in its face, "Oh my god! It's a bobcat! Oh my god!"

Then he hucks the bobcat across the yard with all his might.

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Images courtesy of John Scully, Walden University, Ingrid Scully
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Since March of 2020, over 29 million Americans have been diagnosed with COVID-19, according to the CDC. Over 540,000 have died in the United States as this unprecedented pandemic has swept the globe. And yet, by the end of 2020, it looked like science was winning: vaccines had been developed.

In celebration of the power of science we spoke to three people: an individual, a medical provider, and a vaccine scientist about how vaccines have impacted them throughout their lives. Here are their answers:

John Scully, 79, resident of Florida

Photo courtesy of John Scully

When John Scully was born, America was in the midst of an epidemic: tens of thousands of children in the United States were falling ill with paralytic poliomyelitis — otherwise known as polio, a disease that attacks the central nervous system and often leaves its victims partially or fully paralyzed.

"As kids, we were all afraid of getting polio," he says, "because if you got polio, you could end up in the dreaded iron lung and we were all terrified of those." Iron lungs were respirators that enclosed most of a person's body; people with severe cases often would end up in these respirators as they fought for their lives.

John remembers going to see matinee showings of cowboy movies on Saturdays and, before the movie, shorts would run. "Usually they showed the news," he says, "but I just remember seeing this one clip warning us about polio and it just showed all these kids in iron lungs." If kids survived the iron lung, they'd often come back to school on crutches, in leg braces, or in wheelchairs.

"We all tried to be really careful in the summer — or, as we called it back then, 'polio season,''" John says. This was because every year around Memorial Day, major outbreaks would begin to emerge and they'd spike sometime around August. People weren't really sure how the disease spread at the time, but many believed it traveled through the water. There was no cure — and every child was susceptible to getting sick with it.

"We couldn't swim in hot weather," he remembers, "and the municipal outdoor pool would close down in August."

Then, in 1954 clinical trials began for Dr. Jonas Salk's vaccine against polio and within a year, his vaccine was announced safe. "I got that vaccine at school," John says. Within two years, U.S. polio cases had dropped 85-95 percent — even before a second vaccine was developed by Dr. Albert Sabin in the 1960s. "I remember how much better things got after the vaccines came out. They changed everything," John says.

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