Depression is a mental health disorder that can occur at almost any age. At any given time in the United States it is estimated that between 19 and 20 million people are suffering from some type of depression. When it strikes it makes its victims miserable, robbing them of joy and satisfaction. When it occurs it makes you fell that nothing you do will ever bring back a sense of satisfaction and peace in your life.
According to Dr. Michael D. Yapko, a leading expert on depression:
There is an enormous body of scientific literature indicating that depression has its roots in three general areas: biology, psychology, and sociology. Within an area are many variable, each of which may play an important role and so must be considered in every case.
Signs that you might be suffering from depression
- Fatigue or loss of energy almost every day
- Feelings of worthlessness or guilt almost every day
- Impaired concentration, indecisiveness
- Insomnia or hypersomnia (excessive sleeping) almost every day
- Markedly diminished interest or pleasure in almost all activities nearly every day (called anhedonia, this symptom can be indicated by reports from significant others)
- Restlessness or feeling slowed down
- Recurring thoughts of death or suicide
- Significant weight loss or gain (a change of more than 5% of body weight in a month)
- Trouble concentrating on things, such as reading or watching TV
If you experience some of these symptoms you need to contact a license mental health practicer who treats depression. You don’t want to wait thinking it will just get better. If you are experiencing recurring thoughts of death or suicide you should contact your medical provider or go to your nearest emergency room hospital at once.
Treatment for depression may include working with your medical doctor or psychiatrist, where the main focus of treatment will be drugs to treat the signs and symptoms of depression. Other proven treatments are to work with a clinician specializing in psychotherapy.
Psychotherapy is a general term for treating depression by talking about your condition and related issues with a mental health professional. Psychotherapy is also known as talk therapy or psychological therapy.
Different types of psychotherapy can be effective for depression, such as cognitive behavioral therapy or interpersonal therapy. Your mental health professional may also recommend other types of therapies.
Psychotherapy can help you:
- Adjust to a crisis or other current difficulty
- Identify negative beliefs and behaviors and replace them with healthy, positive ones
- Explore relationships and experiences, and develop positive interactions with others
- Find better ways to cope and solve problems
- Identify issues that contribute to your depression and change behaviors that make it worse
- Regain a sense of satisfaction and control in your life and help ease depression symptoms, such as hopelessness and anger
- Learn to set realistic goals for your life
- Learn to find greater meaning in your life
What every treatment modality you choose, find someone who you can trust and feel comfortable with. It takes great courage to fight your depression and you want to be with someone who you feel understands you and has the technical skills to help provide the proper treatment to help you heal.