Do you look fine on the outside but feel low on the inside?
finding it hard to get out of bed? get Through the day?
Do Your feel lost, empty and Dissatisfied with your life, job or relationships?
Feeling Down and Disengaged From Life Is Normal
We all experience periods of feeling blue, disappointed and sad at some point in our lives. These feelings are normal reactions to life challenges and often abate with time. Describing these everyday feelings as 'depression' contributes to the mistaken belief that clinical depression can be prevented or overcome with just positive thinking and actions.
What is Depression?
Depression is a clinical term which describes a combination of emotional, physical and behavioural symptoms that are intense, prolonged and disruptive to a person's ability to fully function and enjoy life. There are different types of depression including:
Major Depression: Or simply ‘depression’, involves deep, persistent feelings of sadness that may disrupt day-to-day functioning.
Bipolar Depression: Shifts in mood, thinking and behaviour ranging from low depression to extreme mania with with normal moods in between.
Post-Partum Depression: Persistent low mood following childbirth that can impact a mother’s ability to care for or bond with her baby
Dysthymia: Milder but more persistent form of depression considered less severe but more chronic than major depression
Seasonal depression or Seasonal Affective Disorder (S.A.D): Depression triggered by changes in seasons especially during the fall/winter months with symptoms improving in the spring.
Reaching Out for Support Early Can Prevent Depression From Getting Worse.
Signs and Symptoms of Depression
The signs and symptoms of depression come in many forms and are not always easy to detect. They vary from person to person, depending on factors such as age, culture, gender, life experiences and current circumstances. While intense sadness, or low moods, are defining features other common signs and symptoms of depression include:
Persistent or recurring feelings of sadness, hopelessness and helplessness
Changes in appetite
Changes in sleep habits
Feelings of fatigue and exhaustion
Impaired concentration and difficulty making decisions
Loss of interests in activities usually enjoyed
Irritability and anger
Physical symptoms of nausea, aches and pains
Feelings of guilt, shame, lack of self-worth
Withdrawal and isolation from relationships
Misuse of alcohol, drugs, and other unhealthy methods of coping
Preoccupation with death, dying or suicide
What Causes Depression?
Depression is not a character flaw, moral failing or a sign of personal weakness. Depression affects people from all backgrounds. Its causes are attributed to a variety of factors such as:
Genetics or family history
Difficult life events and challenges, (e.g. divorce, financial stability, betrayal)
Trauma, (e.g. domestic violence, emotional, physical or sexual abuse, adverse childhood experiences)
Grief and loss – especially when sudden
How Can Counselling and Therapy For Depression Help?
The good news is that depression is highly manageable with the help of an experienced therapist. Many clients who get the right combination of professional and personal support go on to lead healthy and meaningful lives. At Counselling Associates, our team of highly trained therapists will work with you to tailor a plan for managing your depression that supports your individualized needs and therapy goals. This may involve working in collaboration with you to:
Identify the underlying causes of your depression
Determine how best to change, accept or adapt to challenging situations
Uncover and refine existing strengths
Develop skills for coping and managing emotions, thoughts and behaviours
Connect to wider systems of support
Improve interpersonal relationships
Depression Is More Common Than You Think. You are Not Alone!
The Ontario Ministry of Health and Long Term Care estimates that 1 in 4 Canadians will experience depression in their lifetime. If you think you might be suffering with symptoms of depression, we are here to help! Whether you are experiencing a vague feeling of dissatisfaction, seasonal blues, postpartum or clinical depression, we will work with you to make transformative and sustainable changes.