What Is Depression?
While we all feel sad, moody or low from time to time, some people experience these feelings strongly for long periods of time (weeks, months or even years) and sometimes without any apparent reason. Depression is more than just a low mood – it’s a serious illness that has an impact on both physical and mental health. On average, one in six people – one in five women and one in eight men – will experience depression at some stage of their lives.
Depression is both a neurological and psychological disorder characterized by intense feelings of being sad or miserable. It affects all ages, although most cases of depression involve adolescents and people in early adulthood, with women experiencing it at twice the rate of men. More than the usual emotion of being blue or disheartened, depression usually is chronic, that is, it doesn’t go away and develops over time.
Depression usually manifests as loss of interest and sadness. In moderate cases, there are sudden or progressive weight changes, loss of appetite and difficulty sleeping. People who experience depression also experience fatigue and feel that their energies are diminished, even though they don’t do much work. There is also irritability and thoughts of committing suicide. In severe cases, delusions and hallucinations also occur.
Research suggests that continuing difficulties – such as long-term unemployment, living in an abusive or uncaring relationship, long-term isolation or loneliness, or prolonged exposure to stress at work – are more likely to cause depression than recent life stresses. However, recent events (such as losing a job) or a combination of events can “trigger” depression in people who are already at risk because of past bad experiences or personal factors.
How to Overcome Depression
A common treatment for depression is counselling. Despite the increasing number of people suffering from depression, this disorder can be prevented. Consulting with Fresh Path Counselling is the best way to combat depression.
Some clients find telephone counselling more anonymous than face to face sessions; it gives them the freedom to talk about their concerns without feeling embarrassed. A significant benefit of telephone counselling is the ease of fitting a phone call into your busy schedule as it facilitates out of hours appointment times.