“The LORD himself goes before you and will be with you; he will never leave you nor forsake you. Do not be afraid; do not be discouraged.” – Deuteronomy 31:8
Depression is one of the more common psychological struggles a person can experience in a lifetime. According to ADAA.org, “MDD [Major Depressive Disorder] affects more than 16.1 million American adults, or about 6.7% of the U.S. population age 18 and older in a given year.”
“In 2015, an estimated 3 million adolescents age 12 to 17 in the United States had at least one major depressive episode in the previous year, according to the National Institute of Mental Health.”
While depression can feel like a very isolating, lonely experience, the fact is, many people have or will experience some form of depression in their lifetime. Anything from a divorce, the loss of a loved one, exposure to traumatic events, or other kinds of emotional or physical harm can lead to feelings of hopelessness.
The good news is that you’re not alone, and because this type of feeling can be so common, there is a lot of research dedicated to providing you with support.
“The smartest thing I’ve ever learned is I don’t have all the answers, just a little ligh...
Imagine this: you’re feeling lonely. You have connection to a lot of potential friends but you’re not sure if they are ones you can count on or not. You’re constantly second guessing yourself, unsure of who you really are anymore. It’s difficult to get up in the morning, but most nights you can’t fall asleep easily either.
Your body is seemingly rejecting the normal routines you once had with a newfound increased appetite and lack of desire to move. In general, your mood has been low and at points much more unstable. What am I describing here?
Depending where you’re coming from, I might be describing your teenage years, or I might be describing depression. For many adolescents, teenage years present a major challenge and a lot of it can look like depression. Even more so, then, when a teenager does struggle with Depression, it can be an incredibly challenging exacerbator to an already difficult life stage!
Depression in Teenagers
Here are some ways that depression in teenagers is different from depression in adults.
The Social World
One of the hallmarks of depression is a cycle of negative self talk. People struggling with clinical depression often feel like they aren’t good enough, or they struggle with anxiety made worse by ...
Trying to find the right counselor that fits your needs can feel overwhelming –especially if you’ve never been to counseling before. The following tips are meant to help the process of finding the right counselor for you feel a little bit easier.
First, you’re going to want to identify your goals for counseling. Why are you seeking counseling at this time? How are you hoping to see your life changed through counseling? The answers to these questions will help you to find the right counselor whose specialties or focus areas fit your needs and concerns.
Next, you’ll want to consider your counselor preferences. You are the consumer, so you get to have preferences about the type of counselor you see. You might prefer to see a counselor of a particular gender, ethnicity, race, faith background, etc. Keep in mind that the more comfortable you feel with your counselor, generally the more honest you’re going to be in counseling. Your openness and authenticity is important to the counseling process.
It’s also important to take a look at your budge...
Do you feel fatigued no matter how much or little sleep you get? Do you find yourself not having any interest or motivation in participating in hobbies or activities that have generally brought you joy in the past? Are you experiencing the feeling of being stuck with a sense of hopelessness in your life?
Have you found yourself wondering, “Am I depressed?”
If so, this article will bring some clarity to what depression is in order to help you assess whether or not you may be experiencing symptoms of depression. Also, some next steps will be given to provide you with options on what you can do to seek help.
Depression can take a toll on you mentally, emotionally, socially, physically, and spiritually. Dealing with depression can make it difficult to handle every day activities or responsibilities. Some people may think that depression is just feeling blue and sad, but there is more to it.
Symptoms of Depression
You may feel numb or overwhelmed and not want to get out of bed in the morning. You also may be very good at hiding how you are feeling inside so that people around you don't notice how much you are struggling. There are probably feelings of hopelessness and of feeling all alone, even when surrounded by other people.
In any given year, depending on demographics, about 5-12 percent of the population will experience an episode of major depression, according to the National Institute of Mental Health.
Depression, as described as a major depressive episode, can be an overwhelming experience. Over a life span, around 20 percent of the population will experience a mood disorder (depression, anxiety, bipolar disorder, etc.). This means that many people you know are living with depression, and possibly in silence.
What causes depression?
With so many people affected, it poses the question, "Where does all of this come from?" It’s a question psychologists have been asking for decades. While we have some idea of the answer, it is more complex than straightforward and the answer looks different for each person suffering from depression.
Different Types of Depression
First of all, let’s define our terms here. When we say depression, this can mean a few different things. Did you know that under the classification of Major Depressive Disorder (the hallmark depression diagnosis), there are 14 different codes (sort of more specific diagnoses) that therapists, psychologists, and psychiatrists can use? These look at different aspects of depression such as its tendency to cycle (or ...
Imagine that you are sitting in a sailboat. Looking out at the water, you envision where you want to go. You set the rudder, lift the anchor, put up the sails and away you go. If the wind is strong, you can move quickly to your destination. Perhaps the wind picks up and up and you're suddenly feeling less like a sailor and more like a pilot. The wind is carrying you faster and faster and this has become an incredibly fun thrill ride! You look down at the water and enjoy watching the waves go by as you speedily fly atop the waves, nothing holding you back. However, the wind eventually dies down. After some time, it crawls to a stop and you are stuck.
With no wind in your sails, you float in the ocean all alone. You feel isolated. You look at your boat and realize that that high speed thrill ride you were on a short while ago left your hull damaged, chunks of wood flown off, and you neglected basic maintenance for some time. Perhaps you try blowing into the sails, but nothing can get your boat going again.
Eventually, the winds pick up and once again you're flying. But soon they die and again you're stuck. This process goes on and on for some time. It wears on you, and you never get where you wanted to go in the first place. Ultimately, you are at the whims of the wi...
According to the National Institute of Mental Health, depression effects on women may include the following:
Difficulty concentrating, remembering details, and making decisions
Fatigue and decreased energy
Feelings of guilt, worthlessness, and/or helplessness
Feelings of hopelessness and/or pessimism
Insomnia, early-morning wakefulness, or excessive sleeping
Loss of interest in activities or hobbies once pleasurable, including sex
Overeating or appetite loss
Persistent aches or pains, headaches, cramps, or digestive problems that do not ease even with treatment
Persistent sad, anxious, or "empty" feelings
Thoughts of suicide, or suicide attempts
Depression carries a high risk of suicide. Anybody who expresses suicidal thoughts or intentions should be taken very, very seriously. Do not hesitate to call your local suicide hotline immediately. Call 1-800-SUICIDE (1-800-784-2433) or 1-800-273-TALK (1-800-273-8255), or the deaf hotline at 1-800-799-4TTY (1-800-799-4889).
Warning signs of suicide with depression include:
A sudden switch from being very sad to being very calm or appearing...