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What is depression?

What is Depression?

Depression is a mood disorder that can affect anyone of any age. Clinical depression sometimes referred to as major depression or depressive disorder, is one of the most prevalent mental health disorders in the world. Some estimates place rates of depression globally at over 300 million. In our country, experts say that as many as 15 percent of adults live with depression.

There is no one cause of depression, but traumatic events, genetics, and family history may all play a role in its onset. Depression goes beyond just feeling sad. It is normal to feel down after losing a job, ending a relationship, or experiencing the loss of a loved one. Depression occurs when you cannot get past those feelings after extended amounts of time. The world may seem colorless. You may find yourself thinking degrading personal thoughts, or about ending your life. Many people believe they can overcome these feelings by themselves, but it is vital to know that you do not need to suffer alone. There are many proven treatment options available to return you to vibrant life. 

  • Depression’s symptoms vary by the individual and depend on age, gender, or culture. It is important to remember that depression affects both the mind and the body. This means that symptoms can be both psychological and physical. 
Psychological symptoms: 
  • Decreased mood
  • Feelings of worthlessness 
  • Difficulty concentrating or making decisions
  • Loss of interest in formerly pleasurable activities
  • Feelings of hopelessness or guilt
  • Suicidal thoughts 
Physical symptoms: 
  • Weight loss or gain
  • Aches & Pains
  • Bloating
  • High blood pressure
  • Lack of energy or restlessness 
  • Slowed movements (observable by others)
  • Increases or decreases in sleep
  • Changes in appetite

  • Depression can be treated using medication, therapy techniques, or a combination of both. Therapy, one of the most common depression treatments, allows you to voice your thoughts in a safe, non-judgmental place. It can be hard for some people to find the motivation to begin therapy, but taking the first step to schedule an appointment means the beginning of your journey to feeling better. There are a variety of therapy strategies, including cognitive behavioral therapy, and motivational interviewing. 
  • Cognitive-behavioral therapy (CBT)

    is an evidence-based approach that identifies and changes unhelpful patterns of thinking or behaving. Instead of examining the past, CBT focuses on current life events to identify healthy coping strategies for the future. CBT is often completed over a relatively short period of time. However, the insights gained during those sessions provide life-long tools that can help prevent depression from relapsing. 

  • Motivational Interviewing (MI)

    honors a person’s autonomy and encourages them to reform negative behaviors. MI is very goal-focused and relies upon the individual’s desire for change. The therapist’s role is to provide insight into all aspects of the conflict but ultimately allow the client to make their own decisions. This greatly empowers the individual, as it lets them know they have the intrinsic tools to facilitate changes that better their lives. 

  • Transcranial Magnetic Stimulation (TMS)

    For some people, medication and therapy are not enough to treat depression. These cases, called resistant depression, can be treated via transcranial magnetic stimulation, or TMS. This procedure is non-invasive. It is carried out by activating strong magnetic fields around the areas of the brain involved in depression. There are very few side effects to TMS, which makes it a safe treatment option.  TMS is often carried out multiple times a week, over several weeks. TMS is provided by psychiatrists in clinics throughout the country.

Depression makes the world seem different than it used to be. Things once pleasurable may now seem unbearable. You may feel distant from others. Things that once seemed important may seem meaningless now. If you or a loved one are struggling with depression, it can be beneficial to talk with a therapist about options to get you feeling better. 

Reach out today to learn more about our depression services at or call our office at (860)740-2228

depressed young woman