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Depression Counseling

sad young female

Depression

 

If you or a loved one are dealing with depression, you know this common but serious mental health illness can affect how you feel, think, and act, causing both emotional and physical problems and decreasing your ability to function.

Affecting one in 15 adults annually, depression can happen at any time. Most commonly, it appears initially in your late teens to mid-20s. Depression can be inheritable.

Symptoms of depression can include and cause any or all of the following:

 

  • Feeling sad 

  • Depressed mood

  • Loss of interest or pleasure in activities that you once enjoyed

  • Changes in appetite, such as weight loss or gain and little interest in food

  • Trouble sleeping or sleeping excessively

  • Loss of energy 

  • Increased fatigue

  • Purposeless physical activity such as pacing

  • Slower movements or speech 

  • Feeling worthless or guilty

  • Difficulty in thinking or concentrating 

  • Finding it hard to make decisions

  • Thoughts of death or suicide

 

To be diagnosed as depression, these or other symptoms must last a minimum of two weeks, and represent a change in your past ability to function. Medical conditions should also be ruled out, as some can mimic depression symptoms.


What is the Difference Between Sadness or Grief and Depression? 

 

While you may feel depressed following a loss, sadness is different from depression. When you experience major depression, feelings of worthlessness and self-loathing are common. Your self esteem is negatively affected, and your ability to function at home or work is reduced in the long term. 
 

What Causes Depression?

 

Depression can occur due to a number of factors, such as:

 

  • Biochemistry, or the chemical differences that can occur in the brain

  • Genetics, as depression can run in families

  • Personality Issues such as low self-esteem, pessimism, and a low tolerance for stress can all be causes of depression

  • Environment, such as exposure to violence, neglect and poverty

  • Sleep issues and disorders


 

Depression is Treatable

 

Both medication and psychotherapeutic intervention can help to treat depression. Almost all patients get some relief from their symptoms from one or both approaches to treatment. 

 

While a diagnostic health evaluation should be performed to rule out physical medical conditions from thyroid issues to brain tumors or vitamin deficiency, if a physical condition is ruled out, treatments can include:
 

Medication

Antidepressant medication such as SSRIs can help to balance brain chemistry that may often contribute to depression. In some cases, other psychotropic medications may be helpful. 

 

Psychotherapy

Whether used alone or in combination with medication, therapeutic treatment can include cognitive behavior therapy, focusing on problem solving, and helping depression patients to respond to challenges and stress using more positive techniques.  Other forms of therapy such as cognitive processing therapy, and eye movement desensitization and reprocessing (EMDR) can also be useful.

 

Whether conducted in a group setting or privately involving only you, therapy is an excellent way to work on treating depression and helping you to cope with daily life.
 

Learn More about Depression Treatment

 

If you would like to know more about therapy for depression, and how we can help at San Antonio Authentic Counseling, please reach out to us today!

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