What is Depression
Depression cannot be wished away. And no one’s depression is exactly like someone else’s.
According to the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders (DSM-5) there are many depressive disorders and a wide range of symptoms. The specific diagnoses are differentiated by presumed etiology, severity, duration, or timing. Common among all of the depressive disorders is the presence of sad, empty, or irritable mood, accompanied by somatic and cognitive changes that significantly affect an individual’s capacity to function.
Specific signs and symptoms include:
- Depressed mood most of the day, almost every day.
- Angry outbursts or irritability
- Loss of interest in previously enjoyable activities
- Sleep difficulties, including insomnia or hypersomnia
- Tiredness and lethargy
- Reduced appetite and weight loss or increased appetite associated with weight gain
- Feelings of sadness, numbness, emptiness, or hopelessness
- Slowed thinking, speech, or body movements
- Feelings of worthlessness or guilt
- Memory problems and issues with concentration
- Frequent or recurrent thoughts of death
- Suicidal thoughts or suicide attempts
You don’t have to have all – or even most – of the symptoms to be experiencing a clinical depression. Although arguably the cause of the depressive episode can be that of a simple chemical imbalance in the brain, that is not generally the sole cause. Most depressive episodes result from a combination of factors that include family history, stress, trauma history, medical issues or medications.
You are not alone! You have a treatable condition.
We understand the social stigmas that come with the label of being depressed and aim to help clients sort out their environmental, biological and circumstantial factors contributing to their depression while offering support and care through a very dark time in their lives.