Everyone feels down, upset or sad from time to time, it’s part of life and being human. When we experience stressful times or upsetting events, feelings of low mood are a normal reaction and will usually pass with time. However if feelings of low mood persist or worsen and start to get in the way of you living your life, this could feel like depression.
When we feel depressed, we may feel overwhelmed easily and feel unable to cope or do anything to help ourselves. Relationships, family life, work and our quality of life can suffer and we can feel stuck in a downward spiral which can leave us feeling very isolated. Often when a person experiences depression think they are the only one who feels this way, but you are actually not alone.
It is estimated that 1 in 4 people experience a significantly, depressed mood at some time in their lives and depression can affect anyone at any stage in their life. Depression does not discriminate.
People experience depression in different ways, but common psychological and physical symptoms include:
feeling down, depressed or hopeless
trouble sleeping, or sleeping too much
feeling tired or having little energy
little interest or pleasure in doing things
poor appetite or overeating
feeling bad about yourself, or that you are a failure in some way
finding it hard to function at work or at home
avoiding other people, sometimes even family or close friends
What causes depression? Causes of low mood can be complex and whilst it may be triggered by a single event, more often feelings of depression are caused by a combination of factors interacting with one another over a period of time. These might include stressful life events such as bereavement, change, loss, work issues, financial pressures, relationship problems, family issues or early life experiences such as neglect, trauma or abuse.
So how can counselling help? It can bring relief to be able to talk openly in a confidential environment, knowing you will not be judged or pressurised, but listened to and understood by someone trained to help you.
Counselling enables you to explore and express your thoughts, feelings and actions in a safe, supportive environment at a pace that’s right for you. This process can help you to make sense of your distressing feelings and symptoms and help you explore any changes you might want to make, so that gradually you can find a way forward.