WHAT IS DEPRESSION?
Depression is a common term used in society by people to indicate when they are feeling down. Feeling down occasionally is generally not something to be clinically concerned about since slight fluctuations in mood are appropriate responses to changes in circumstances. When feelings of depression, however, will not subside and begin to interfere with daily functioning, it may be time to contact a professional therapist or counselor for help.
According to the American Psychological Associate (2000), depression is characterized by one or more episodes that can include the following symptoms:
Loss of interest or pleasure in all or most activities
Significant weight change
Psychomotor agitation or retardation
Feelings of worthlessness or guilt
Recurrent thoughts of death or suicide (American Psychological Association, 2000).
In addition to the symptoms experienced during depression, depression has been associated with increased symptom burden, functional impairment, reduced quality of life, and higher medical costs. Depression can not only have physical implications, but it can also be psychologically damaging to you and those who love you. Seeking professional help may be needed. Sometimes that hardest part of getting help for depression is finding the motivation to pick up the phone and call.
Estimates suggest that approximately 14% of the general population will experience at least one clinically significant episode of depression, the most common of all psychiatric disorders, at some point in their lives. Research reports that people with depression and people who react more to negative emotional stimulation display greater brain activity in the right frontal area than the left frontal area.
We can treat depression with neurofeedback, avoiding the side affects of medication. We also use our holistic, cognitive-behavioral, integrated treatment approach which allows people to either avoid the use of antidepressants or reduce reliance upon medication.
“I had been suffering on and off from major depression since my teens. I had tried all kinds of antidepressants and spent years in therapy with different therapists. Once I began working with Linda, I realized how gifted she truly was. She connected with me emotionally, and made me feel safe.
She also used cutting edge research to tailor my treatment to my specific issues and needs. I remember remarking to Linda, “How is it that I’ve been in therapy for more than ten years of my life, and with you I’ve accomplished more in two weeks than I have in years?!”
Since working with Linda I have gone through some major life transitions (including the end of a marriage) with minimal distress due to the development of new coping skills. If these same events occurred even five years ago, I am fairly certain I would have fallen into another major depression. With Linda’s help, I have been able to recognize and acknowledge my own desires and strengths, including the fact that I can now ask others for help! I can’t thank her enough, and I would recommend her to anyone.”
–Sara, Former Client
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