Have you been asking yourself, “what’s happening to me; I feel so lost and hopeless; I don’t enjoy doing things that I normally do; I don’t have any energy.” You are not alone.
Depression is a common mood disorder that affects millions of adults, adolescents, and children every year in the United States. Depression has been reported to affect women more often than men. It is also known to affect the body as well as mood; such as, physical tension, shortness of breath, stomach problems, and headaches. Doctors, and other Mental Health Professionals, use the Diagnostic and Statistical Manuel of Mental Disorders, Fifth Edition, to assist them in diagnosing a mental health disorder. According to the DSM 5, a diagnosis of depression is made when at least five of the following symptoms occur nearly every day for at least two weeks (*either depressed mood or loss of pleasure in all or most activities must be one of the symptoms):
- Depressed Mood
- Loss of pleasure in all or most activities
- Significant weight gain or change in appetite
- Change in sleep
- Change in activity
- Fatigue of loss of energy
- Diminished concentration
- Feelings of guilt or worthlessness
There is much evidence that supports someone having a genetic predisposition to depression if someone in their family has experienced it, although this is not always the case. Many people will be affected as the result of chronic stress, low self-esteem, and a negative perspective.
Depression can often be treated through counseling, such as Cognitive Behavioral Therapy (identifying irrational beliefs that are producing depressed feelings and that reinforce them). Through CBT, the individual learns how to challenge these irrational thoughts and to replace them with more rational thoughts. This in turn results in experiencing fewer depressed symptoms.
Depression can also be treated with anti-depressant medication administrated by a medical doctor. In the past 25 years, there has been an increasing understanding of how chemicals in the brain (neurotransmitters such as serotonin) are a vital component underlying depression.
Are you struggling with feelings such as hopelessness, guilt, or worthlessness, and asking yourself, “could I be experiencing depression?” Depression can be treated; you can experience hope again. Please call me now, and we’ll talk about what you’re experiencing and decide on the next step for you to feel better. I’m Mike Snider, call me at 830-428-3035.