Depression

Anxiety

Depression counselling is often recommended as a combination treatment plan. Talking therapy can help you identify, address and manage negative, self-defeating thoughts that may affect the way you behave with depression

We all have times where we feel sad, but depression affects your daily life, making it hard for you to find enjoyment in day-to-day activities. Depression is a mood disorder that can take many forms: some days you may find it impossible to get out of bed, while other days you may feel more able to go about your normal daily tasks.

Living with depression can be incredibly difficult, for both those suffering and those around them. Due to the nature of the condition, however, seeking help can often be delayed.

Do I have depression?

For some, an obstacle to them seeking help is understanding whether or not they actually have depression. Before we go into the symptoms of depression, it’s important to point out that if you are struggling with your emotions and feel unable to cope – it could be worth seeking support. You are worthy of help, no matter how trivial you may perceive your problems to be.

Speaking to a professional, whether that’s your GP or a counsellor, can help you understand what you need. This can range from self-help tips and breathing exercises, to psychotherapy and/or medication. Everyone is different and will need differing levels of support.

What does depression feel like?

If you have depression, you are likely to have at least five of the following symptoms.

You may feel:

  • worthless
  • like life isn’t worth living
  • constantly anxious, tearful and worried
  • like you can’t concentrate
  • indecisive
  • irritable and intolerant of others
  • you are not getting enough enjoyment out of life
  • you have a lack of self-esteem
  • you have excessive and inappropriate guilt
  • you have no motivation or interest in things you used to enjoy

You may experience:

  • Changes in sleeping patterns – broken nights or oversleeping
  • Changes in eating patterns – loss of appetite or overeating
  • Tiredness and a loss of energy
  • Persistent headaches and/or stomach upsets
  • Chronic pain
  • A slower speaking pattern than usual
  • Loss of libido
  • Changes to the menstrual cycle

You may also:

  • Neglect hobbies and interests
  • Isolate yourself from friends and family
  • Take part in fewer social activities
  • Notice your productivity falling at work
In some circumstances, you might not even notice that you have developed depression, especially if it has been a gradual process over several weeks or months. Sometimes it takes a friend, a family member or a partner to point out that you may have a problem.

Writer Andrew Solomon shares his story. Watch the full video on Head Talks.

Types of depression

There are several different ‘types’ of depression, including: 

Mild depression -

When depression symptoms have a limited impact on daily life. Generally, sufferers of mild depression will experience a persistent low mood and spirit. They may find it difficult to motivate themselves to do things they normally enjoy.

Major (clinical) depression -

A more severe form that can lead to hospital admission. Symptoms will be more prominent and interfere with daily life. They can affect eating habits, sleeping, and other day-to-day activities. Some sufferers may feel suicidal and that life is no longer worth living.

Bipolar disorder -

A form of manic depression characterised by extreme highs and lows. For example, a period of hyperactivity where sufferers are excited and planning overambitious tasks is followed by a period of severe depression.

Seasonally affected disorder -

A form that’s closely related to the length of days. It typically occurs in the autumn and winter months when the days are shorter. Symptoms tend to alleviate when the days get brighter and longer.

Postnatal depression -

A condition that can develop in men and women after childbirth.

When to get help for depression

If you experience depression symptoms for most of the day, every day, for more than two weeks, you should seek help. If your feelings start affecting many parts of your life, this is a sign you may need professional support.

The parts of your life that depression can have a negative impact on include, but are not limited to:

  • Relationships
  • Work
  • Interests
  • An overall sense of happiness and enjoyment

Thoughts of suicide and self-harm are also warning signs that your condition is getting worse. If you experience these, you should look to seek professional support.

If you believe that you are affected by depression, please do not suffer in silence. Do get in touch so we can start working together to help you to heal. I offer depression counselling In Wiltshire and Online