Is there a relationship between depression and crying? A review
Article first published online: 14 DEC 2006
Acta Psychiatrica Scandinavica
Volume 115, Issue 5, pages 340–351, May 2007
How to Cite
Vingerhoets, A. J. J. M., Rottenberg, J., Cevaal, A. and Nelson, J. K. (2007), Is there a relationship between depression and crying? A review. Acta Psychiatrica Scandinavica, 115: 340–351. doi: 10.1111/j.1600-0447.2006.00948.x
- Issue published online: 22 FEB 2007
- Article first published online: 14 DEC 2006
- Accepted for publication November 2, 2006
- depression measures
Objective: To conduct a systematic examination of the relationship between depression and crying by reviewing all relevant theory and empirical data including the performance of crying items in measures of depression.
Method: Review of the extant literature on depression and crying using PubMed, PsychInfo and Google Scholar databases.
Results: Scores on crying items of depression inventories correlate moderately with overall depression severity. Otherwise, there is surprisingly little evidence for the widespread claim that depression leads to more frequent and/or easier crying. There is also little empirical support for the competing claim that severely depressed individuals lose their capacity to cry.
Conclusion: Current claims about the relationship between depression and crying lack a robust empirical foundation. Assessment instruments and diagnostic systems for mood disorders are inconsistent in how they handle crying as a symptom. Further work to investigate the causes and the context of crying in depressed patients is needed.