Do you experience depression? Has someone you know been diagnosed with depression? A study undertaken by Beyondblue identified that at any given time, 1,000,000 Australians live with depression. 1 in 5 women and 1 in 8 men are likely to experience depression in their lifetime. There are a number of reasons why there is a gap between the prevalence of depression between males and female. A primary reason is differences in reporting. Men have typically been unwilling to report depression or have been inappropriately conditioned to not speak up. This is supported by the differences between men and women in the use of substances. Men are more likely to turn to drugs and alcohol to cope with depression. While the stigma around seeking treatment for depression is changing, there is still a difference in the rates of depression between males and females.

Depression is not just about “being sad”. It often comes with feelings of worthlessness, self-criticism, hopelessness, anger, guilt, changes to appetite and sleep, fatigue, and issues with concentration and memory. Depression is also often an underlying cause of self-harm and suicide. Other signs and symptoms of depression include:

• Persistent low mood for more than two weeks.
• A distinct loss of interest or enjoyment in pleasurable activities
• Feeling discouraged about the future
• Irritability and agitation
• Feelings of failure
• Tearful
• Fatigue or loss of energy
• Feelings of worthlessness or hopelessness
• Loss of interest in sex or being close with others
• Indecisiveness

If you are concerned that you or someone you know may be experiencing symptoms of depression, it is important to remember that early intervention is best for recovery. Cause Effect Psychology utilise a variety of evidence based interventions to support individuals experiencing depression. Given depression can be the result of external changes, i.e. relationship breakdown or job loss, it is important to understand what precipitated the onset of depression symptoms to formulate an appropriate treatment plan.

Our Psychologists are trained in therapy models which have been proven to be highly effective in the treatment of depression, including Cognitive Behavioural Therapy (CBT), Motivational Interviewing (MI), Solution-Focused Brief Therapy (SFBT), and Acceptance and Commitment Therapy (ACT). It is important to treat both the patient’s symptoms and the cause of their symptoms developing. We aim to take a flexible approach which will support the client to manage their symptoms long after they finish treatment.

If you do believe you are experiencing depression, it is imperative you look after yourself physically. Light to moderate exercise has been proven to help symptoms of depression. It is just as important to ensure you are getting enough sleep and your diet is healthy. Talking to someone you trust, such as a loved one, your GP, or a psychologist can help you to understand your symptoms and learn that they can be managed.

If you would like to confidentially discuss your symptoms or further understand how you might support someone close to living with depression, please contact us today to make an appointment with one of our Psychologists.

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