We all experience periods of feeling “down” in our lives. However, if these feelings don’t go away quickly, or if they become so persistent that they interfere with your everyday life, you might be suffering from depression.
When you are depressed, things can feel hopeless and beyond your control, but with counselling it can be possible to turn it around. We will work together to understand the underlying causes of your depression and plan active strategies that aim to help to alleviate depressive symptoms and aim to prevent them from recurring in the future.
Everyone’s experience of depression is different but there are some common signs and symptoms. These symptoms can be part of the normal ‘lows’ experienced by everyone now and again. However, the more symptoms there are and the longer they have lasted the more likely you are dealing with depression.
Contributory factors: Low mood, feelings of hopelessness, lack of motivation or pleasure, irritability, crying, sleeplessness, difficulty concentrating, easily distracted, change in appetite, weight loss, weight gain, loss of interest in intimacy/sex, social withdrawal, suicidal thoughts.
Sometimes the cause of depression is obvious – a particular disappointment or frustration, or the loss of a loved one – but that’s not always the case. Typically, there are several underlying reasons and contributing factors working in combination to result in depression.
These may include:
• Negative life events such as job loss, family problems or divorce
• Bereavement and loss
• Childhood experiences including trauma and abuse, or lack of preparation for adult life
• Long term suppressed anger
• Personal circumstances such as loneliness, stress, physical exhaustion or disability
• Physical illness including viral infections (e.g. glandular fever), painful or chronic illnesses (e.g. arthritis), hormonal imbalances (e.g. underactive thyroid)
• Life threatening conditions such as cancer and heart disease
• Heavy drinking
• Heavy social media use
If your depression starts to interfere with your ability to function at work, in your family, relationships and social life, or your overall sense of contentment is affected to the point where you might be contemplating self-harm or suicide, you will urgently need professional support to beat depression.
It may seem like an impossible task to overcome your depression, but the sooner you seek help, the more successful the chances of turning your negative outlook around.
Counselling can help to improve self esteem, feelings of self worth, relationships at home and at work. It can give a general improved sense of wellbeing.