What is Depression?
People become depressed for a wide variety of reasons. Depression is a word that people use often and means different things to different people. Sometimes people use the word to describe feeling down or unmotivated or a passing period of sadness but within a two week period or so “it” lifts or at least comes and goes. During this time the person still finds enjoyment in some aspects of their life. Clinical depression means something else. For some people depression is like a dark cloud that slowly moves over them bringing a sense of dense confusion, fear and uncertainty. Others may experience going to bed feeling okay about life and wake up the next day with a sense of doom and gloom. When someone is in this type of mental state the obstructions and obstacles in life feel daunting. Depression comes in many forms and has many causes. People can experience depression in different ways. Based on symptoms the medical profession divides depression into specific categories. This is not to label the person but to create a template for treatment. Based on the symptoms different medications and methods of treatment are known through research to be more effective. The following are some common terms used to categorize depression:
- Major Depressive Episode. A period of at least two weeks of feeling extremely low or disinterested most of the day, nearly every day plus some other symptoms
- Major Depressive Disorder. A history of one or more major depressive episodes without any manic or hypomanic episodes
- Generally a milder (but still serious) form of depression that has been present for at least two years
- Bipolar Disorder. Formerly called manic-depressive disorder. Bipolar Disorder involves a history of both extreme lows and highs of mood
A few observations about depression:
- Depression is hard to diagnose on your own. Our moods affect our judgment of ourselves
- You are not alone if you have depression. More than 15% of adults will be depressed at some time in their lives.
- Depression is not a sign of weakness. Being depressed does not mean that you have a “weak personality” or a flaw in your character. Many capable, intelligent and extremely accomplished people have been depressed
If you are wondering if you are depressed please talk to a health care professional. Depression can be treated effectively. More information is available on the website Depression Hurts.ca
Signs that a family member, friend, or work colleague may be experiencing depression:
- an increasing difficulty making decisions
- decrease in ability to do regular tasks
- an inability to concentrate
- decline in dependability
- unusual increase in error
- proneness to accidents
- frequent lateness or increased “sick” days
- uncharacteristic lack of enthusiasm for work or things that usually are of interest
- personality or behavioral changes that appear “out of character” for that person
How can clinical counselling help?
- Learn how depression is affecting you.
- Develop personal strategies for how to make change.
- Assistance to remove or change areas in your life where there is shadows of disbelief in self
- Develop an understanding of how your depression may affect those close to you.
- Learning to deal with your depression rather than suffering from it requires making adjustments and learning more about your condition
Our integrated health clinic has two experienced clinical counsellor available to assist you or a family member. Clinical counselling provides the opportunity to discuss your situation and the difficulties that you may be experiencing. Our counsellors will listen to your concerns and work with the changes you would like to make in your life. Strategies for moving forward will be developed in a manner that works for you. Everyone is unique and change needs to take place in a way that is comfortable for the individual. Each counselling session will be one hour long. To book an appointment or a free fifteen minute meet and greet time with one of our counsellors please call our reception @ 250 881-1806.