Talking To Your Doctor
If you have anxiety, depression, or both, chances are that your doctor will recommend medication, therapy, or a combination of the two. Keep track your symptoms and keep a log of how you feel each day, as this can help in the diagnostic process. Its also important to speak up and ask your doctor whether they think you have depression, anxiety, or both. This clarity can help you understand the treatment focus and how to manage your symptoms. For example, a patient who is prescribed an antidepressant like a selective serotonin reuptake inhibitor may not realize that the medication has been prescribed for their anxiety, as SSRIs are used to treat both anxiety and depression.4 Never hesitate to ask about your diagnosis, as you have a right to your personal health information.
The most important quality that anxiety and depression share is that they are both very treatable conditions. Never hesitate to find people to help you stayed informed and on the right track towards a healthier mind and body. Who can you recruit to help you with your anxiety or depression today?
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Can Depression Go Away On Its Own Without Treatment
Surprisingly, some experts say that it can. For some people, depression is cyclical or seasonal, and they can eventually recover and remit without any specific intervention, says James Murrough, M.D., Ph.D., Director of the Depression and Anxiety Center for Discovery and Treatment at Mount Sinai. “But we also know that treatments like psychotherapy and medications can severely reduce the symptoms and duration of an episode of depression. Many individuals who suffer from depression never seek treatment, and thats why from a public health perspective we want to keep reducing the stigma around it.
How Can I Take Care Of Myself
Once you begin treatment, you should gradually start to feel better. Go easy on yourself during this time. Try to do things you used to enjoy. Even if you dont feel like doing them, they can improve your mood. Other things that may help:
- Try to get some physical activity. Just 30 minutes a day of walking can boost mood.
- Try to maintain a regular bedtime and wake-up time.
- Eat regular, healthy meals.
- Do what you can as you can. Decide what must get done and what can wait.
- Try to connect with other people, and talk with people you trust about how you are feeling.
- Postpone important life decisions until you feel better.
- Avoid using alcohol, nicotine, or drugs, including medications not prescribed for you.
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Causes And Risk Factors
Depression is not a mood you can just get over. It is a disease in which the brain ceases to register pleasurable activities, says Angelino. Indeed, MRI studies with depressed people have found changes in the parts of the brain that play a significant role in depression.
Women are about twice as likely as men to be diagnosed with depression. Youre also more likely to develop depression if you are between ages 45 and 64, nonwhite, or divorced, and if you never graduated high school, cant work or are unemployed, and dont have health insurance. Other risks for depression include factors such as these:
- Experiencing stressful events in your life, such as losing your job, having problems in your marriage, major health problems, and/or financial challenges.
- Having a bad childhood, such as one involving abuse, poor relationships with your parents, and/or your parents own marital problems.
- Certain personality traits, such as getting extremely upset when youre stressed.
- A family history of depression, which can increase your own risk three or four times.
Depression is far more common than you might think, with nearly one out of 10 adults depressed at any time, about half of them severely.
Symptoms Of Anxiety And Depression
Anxiety and depression have a lot of overlapping symptoms, such as insomnia, but those with anxiety may be more likely to experience feelings of panic and constantly ruminating on things that make them anxious, while someone with depression may suffer from a continuous low mood, low self-esteem and poor energy.
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What Are The Signs And Symptoms Of Depression
Common symptoms of depression include:
- Persistent sad, anxious, or empty mood
- Feelings of hopelessness or pessimism
- Feelings of irritability, frustration or restlessness
- Feelings of guilt, worthlessness, or helplessness
- Loss of interest or pleasure in hobbies or activities
- Difficulty concentrating, remembering, or making decisions
- Difficulty sleeping, early morning awakening, or oversleeping
- Changes in appetite or unplanned weight changes
- Aches or pains, headaches, cramps, or digestive problems without a clear physical cause and that do not ease even with treatment
- Suicide attempts or thoughts of death or suicide
If you or someone you know is in immediate distress or is thinking about hurting themselves, call the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline toll-free at 1-800-273-TALK . You also can text the Crisis Text Line or use the Lifeline Chat on the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline website.
Depression: What You Need To Know As You Age
If youre one of the more than 14.8 million American adults who experiences major depression, you may feel so bad that you cant get out of bed, be around the people you love or participate in activities that you usually enjoy. Actually, there are more than 50 different symptoms of major depression, ranging from the well-knowncrying and sadnessto those you might never associate with depression, such as anger, workaholism and back pain.
Depression is a disease that affects every aspect of a persons life, not just mood, says Johns Hopkins expert Andrew Angelino, M.D., Chair of Psychiatry at Howard County General Hospital. The World Health Organization predicts that by 2020, depression will be the second-leading cause of disability in the world, just behind cardiovascular disease.
People who are depressed are far more likely to have other chronic medical conditions, including cardiovascular disease, back problems, arthritis, diabetes, and high blood pressure, and to have worse outcomes. Untreated depression can even affect your immune response to some vaccines.
Depression is not just debilitating it can be deadly. An estimated one out of five people with depression will attempt suicide at some point.
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Is It Loneliness Or Depression
Theres an overlap between the signs of loneliness and the formal symptoms of depression, but there are some key differences.
You may think of feeling lonely and living with depression in similar ways. For example, you could experience:
- irritability or anger outbursts
- heart palpitations
The biggest difference between loneliness and depression is that one is classified as a feeling and the other as a formal mental health condition, says Pareen Sehat, a registered clinical counselor in Vancouver, Canada.
You can think of loneliness as a temporary emotional state, even if it may last a long time for some people.
Loneliness means that your mind and body long for connection. Typically, once you find connection, youll feel much better, says Sehat.
On the other hand, depression is a complex mental health condition that can be caused by multiple reasons, not just loneliness. Symptoms of depression often last longer and require professional support.
Sometimes, depression makes it harder to want to reach out and connect with others. On the other hand, feeling lonely may push you to act in the opposite way.
Theres also the matter of how long loneliness and depression last.
Loneliness can come and go or only last a short while. It can also last longer, depending on your situation. A diagnosis of depression, on the other hand, means youve experienced symptoms for at least 2 weeks, Sehat clarifies.
Major Depressive Disorder With Seasonal Pattern
Previously called seasonal affective disorder, or SAD, this type of depression is related to the reduction in daylight during the fall and winter.
It lifts during the rest of the year and in response to light therapy.
People who live in countries with long or severe winters seem to be affected more by this condition.
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There’s No One Reason For Depression
Lots of things influence whether a person gets depressed. Some of it is biology things like our genes, brain chemistry, and hormones. Some is environment, including daylight and seasons, or social and family situations we face. And some is personality, like how we react to life events or the support systems we create for ourselves. All these things can help shape whether or not a person becomes depressed.
Research shows that depression runs in families. Some people inherit genes that contribute to depression. But not everyone who has a family member with depression will develop it too. And many people with no family history of depression still get depressed. So genes are one factor, but they aren’t the only reason for depression.
Chemicals called neurotransmitters help send messages between nerve cells in the brain. Some neurotransmitters regulate mood. When a person is depressed, these neurotransmitters might be in low supply or not effective enough.
Genes and brain chemistry can be connected: Having the genes for depression may make a person more likely to have the neurotransmitter problem that is part of depression.
Stress, Health, and Hormones
Things like stress, using alcohol or drugs, and hormone changes also affect the brain’s delicate chemistry and mood.
Getting enough sleep and regular exercise often has a positive effect on neurotransmitter activity and mood.
Daylight and Seasons
Family and Social Environment
Disruptive Mood Dysregulation Disorder
Disruptive mood dysregulation disorder is a condition that occurs in children and youth ages 6 to 18. It involves a chronic and severe irritability resulting in severe and frequent temper outbursts. The temper outbursts can be verbal or can involve behavior such as physical aggression toward people or property. These outbursts are significantly out of proportion to the situation and are not consistent with the childs developmental age. They must occur frequently and typically in response to frustration. In between the outbursts, the childs mood is persistently irritable or angry most of the day, nearly every day. This mood is noticeable by others, such as parents, teachers, and peers.
In order for a diagnosis of disruptive mood dysregulation disorder to be made, symptoms must be present for at least one year in at least two settings and the condition must begin before age 10. Disruptive mood dysregulation disorder is much more common in males than females. It may occur along with other disorders, including major depressive, attention-deficit/hyperactivity, anxiety, and conduct disorders.
Disruptive mood dysregulation disorder can have a significant impact on the childs ability to function and a significant impact on the family. Chronic, severe irritability and temper outbursts can disrupt family life, make it difficult for the child/youth to make or keep friendships, and cause difficulties at school.
Treatment typically involves and/or medications.
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How Are They Different
The main difference between depression and anxiety is the symptoms. Depression is a persistent feeling of sadness. You also have no energy and you lose interest in activities you once loved. Some people with depression think about hurting themselves.
Anxiety involves fear or worry that you cant control. Depending on the type of anxiety you have, the worry can surface during everyday activities like meeting new people.
What Is The Role Of Inflammation In Depression
There is growing evidence that depression gives rise to inflammation and the inflammatory response creates or exacerbates depression. Neuroscientists know that there is lots of crosstalk in the brain between neural circuits and inflammatory pathways. Negative thoughts are a source of psychological pain.
Like all signs of injury, pain mobilizes various immune cells to help subdue the source, and that mobilization creates inflammation. Stress is known to activate an inflammatory response. The presence of inflammatory cells in the brain may be one reason many drug treatments for depression fail they do not target inflammation.
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Who Is At Risk For Depression
Depression can affect anyone, no matter their age, gender or circumstances. About 16 million Americans experience depression each year.
Women may experience depression more often than men. And your genetics or other health conditions can increase the likelihood that youll have at least one depressive episode in your lifetime.
Depression And Anxiety Counselling Services Melbourne
If you are suffering or experiencing conditions of anxiety or depression, your Melbourne CBD psychologist can assess which condition is the principal issue and begin a treatment plan.
Counselling is important. Cognitive behavioural therapy, commonly referred to as CBT is therapy treatment counsellors and psychologists use for both anxiety and depression. CBT is essentially a collaborative and individualised program that helps individuals to identify unhelpful thoughts and behaviours, then through counselling sessions, you learn to reprogram your thinking and responses to gain healthier skills and habits.
Another treatment approach is called Intensive Short-Term Dynamic Psychotherapy , which only a small number of certified general and clinical psychologists can use for diagnosis and treatment clients.
The principle of ISTDP as an interactive therapeutic approach, the psychologist and client work together to deeply explore an individuals emotional and interpersonal experiences.
The objective of ISTDP is to identify and resolve psychological, emotional and interpersonal blocks which interfere with a persons capacity to form close, healthy and intimate relationships with others and to live in a way which is authentic and fulfilling.
Both treatments are also universally recognised within the psychology community to treat many types of mental health conditions.
**remember anxiety and depression is highly treatable by seeking treatment early**
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Genes’ Effect On Mood And Depression
Every part of your body, including your brain, is controlled by genes. Genes make proteins that are involved in biological processes. Throughout life, different genes turn on and off, so that in the best case they make the right proteins at the right time. But if the genes get it wrong, they can alter your biology in a way that results in your mood becoming unstable. In a person who is genetically vulnerable to depression, any stress can then push this system off balance.
Mood is affected by dozens of genes, and as our genetic endowments differ, so do our depressions. The hope is that as researchers pinpoint the genes involved in mood disorders and better understand their functions, depression treatment can become more individualized and more successful. Patients would receive the best medication for their type of depression.
Another goal of gene research, of course, is to understand how, exactly, biology makes certain people vulnerable to depression. For example, several genes influence the stress response, leaving us more or less likely to become depressed in response to trouble.
The evidence for other types of depression is more subtle, but it is real. A person who has a first-degree relative who suffered major depression has an increase in risk for the condition of 1.5% to 3% over normal.
Does Depression Often Occur With Grief
Grief is a common, normal response to loss. Losses that may lead to grief include the death or separation of a loved one, loss of a job, death or loss of a beloved pet, or any number of other changes in life, such as divorce, becoming an “empty nester,” or retirement.
Anyone can experience grief and loss, but not everyone will experience clinical depression, which differs from grief in that depression involves a range of other symptoms such as feelings of low self-worth, negative thoughts about the future, and suicide, whereas grief involves feelings of emptiness, loss and longing for a loved one, with an intact capacity to feel pleasure. Each person is unique in how they cope with these feelings.
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What Foods Help Ease Depression
While no specific diet has been proven to relieve depression, a healthy diet can help you feel your best physically and mentally. Certain foods may be linked to brain health and support for memory, alertness, and mood. Examples include foods that contain omega-3 fatty acids , antioxidants , and nutrients like choline . Always talk with your doctor before making any major diet changes.
Can You Prevent Depression From Happening
While theres no surefire way to prevent depression, one of the greatest protective factors for depression is social connection and social support, says Jessica Stern, Ph.D., clinical assistant professor in the Department of Psychiatry at NYU Langone Health. Maintaining healthy friendships and relationships, she says, can potentially significantly decrease the likelihood or severity of depression. Whats more, the chance that an individual will receive care for symptoms of depression is often based on their social situation, Dr. Murrough says. Friends or family notice that someones not themselves, having trouble getting out of bed, and missing activities and appointments, and will help them seek care. Someone whos relatively isolated may be at risk for not getting treatment, and in turn, fall into deeper depression. The key? Nurture your relationships and encourage each other to talk openly about your feelings, without judgment. The more we can de-stigmatize emotions, the more we can help prevent or slow down the progression of negative emotions to depressive symptoms, says Dr. Stern.
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Physical Depression: What Depression Can Do To Your Body
Reviewed by Laura Angers, LPC
Are you waking up still feeling exhausted? As you go through your day, do you notice your body is getting achy? You know you aren’t sick, but you’re concerned because this isn’t normal for you. Maybe you’re wondering if your physical symptoms are connected to your diagnosis of depression. You may be right. Physical depression is very real, and you’re not alone when it comes to suffering from it.
We know that depression affects our moods. When we are sad, we are aware that it’s a symptom of depression, but can mental depression manifest symptoms in our physical bodies? And if so, what kind of symptoms does it bring about?
Before we learn about physical depression, let’s take a look at what depression is since that causes the physical symptoms in our bodies.
What Is Depression?
Depression is a mental condition that can cause feelings of sadness and hopelessness that we can’t just power through. It’s estimated that 16.2 million American adults experience depression each year.
Because depression can make navigating our days difficult, it isn’t something we can ignore or wish away. By ignoring depression, we risk the manifestation of serious physical health issues that can be even more damaging.
Who Is At Risk To Develop Depression?
While there’s no guaranteed way to say if you will struggle with depression or not, there are some factors that can increase your risk. Here’s what you need to know:
12 Symptoms Of Depression