Therapy: Depression

What is Depression?

 

Depression is a prolonged sadness, flat or low mood experienced over weeks, months, or years. The nature of depression means it impacts our quality of life and relationships, often daily. It is a common medical condition, with one in seven Australians experiencing depression in their lifetime, and one in 16 Australians currently experiencing depression.

Everyone’s circumstances and experiences are unique, and so the causes of depression will vary for everyone. Life events, personal factors, and biology have all been linked to depression, and it is people’s unique combination of these factors that may lead to the development of depression.

What are the signs and symptoms of depression?

Generally, when people to refer to depression they are talking about the clinical diagnosis of Major Depressive Disorder. However, there are other conditions that will also have depressive symptoms as part of the diagnostic presentation.

Below are the main symptoms of a Major Depressive episode. You do not need to experience all symptoms to be meet the criteria of Major Depressive Disorder – 5 of the 9 symptoms may mean you have this diagnosis.

  • Low mood: Sadness, inability to get excited
  • Low motivation and loss of interest. Some experiences may include low motivation to engage in hobbies, loss of interest in socializing, low interest in self-care, or to work. Routine tasks such as getting out of bed, having a shower, opening blinds, and leaving the house may also be a struggle

Other symptoms include:

  • Changes in weight, which could be an increase or a decrease due to changes in appetite or motivation
  • Fatigue or loss of energy
  • Changes in sleeping patterns
  • Cognitive functioning, often described as difficulties in concentrating, focus, memory, problem solving, multi-tasking
  • Slowing of physical movement, as observed by others
  • Thoughts of worthlessness, irrational guilt
  • Thoughts of death including suicidal ideation or preoccupation with death

Difference between depression and anxiety

Depression and anxiety are separate conditions, though they do share a high level of comorbidity. That is, people are likely to experience both at the same time. At a simplified and fundamental level, depression is based on the emotions of sadness and motivation whereas anxiety is based on fear or worry and avoidance.

Treatment for Depression

Some broad strategies that have been shown to help with depression are:

  • Self Care: eating well, sleeping well, and exercising
  • Goal setting and sense of achievement through productivity
  • Engaging in hobbies
  • Positive social interactions

Seeking Help

If you are experiencing signs or symptoms of depression, engaging in therapy with a psychologist will allow you to learn tools and strategies tailored to your unique situation. This is important because everyone’s circumstances and experiences are unique. A psychologist creates a safe environment to explore these unique contributing factors and will work with you to understand your experience of depression to tailor individual and supportive treatment.

F.A.Q’s

Below are some of our frequently asked questions. If you have any other questions, please contact us.
What is a psychologist?

A psychologist is a professional trained in the science of how people think, feel, behave and learn.

Registered psychologists are required to have a minimum of six years of university training and supervised experience, and to engage in ongoing education to keep their skills and knowledge up to date.

What does a psychologist do?
Our psychologists provide therapy to their clients, either face to face or via Telehealth. Through therapy, our psychologists assessing their client’s concerns and life circumstances, and offer support, advice and treatment to address their client’s issues.
What is therapy and how will it help me?
Therapy is a series of structured sessions with a psychologist with the goal of improving some aspect of your life. The first appointment is about getting to know each other, as well as providing an opportunity to build an understanding of what you want to achieve, define goals and address questions about therapy.

Based on learning and understanding your experience, your psychologist will suggest a strategy to support progress towards the agreed goals.

Typically, this involves devising personal coping methods that target current problems and learning longer term strategies to help maintain the improvements achieved, with the goal being to help you make the changes you want.

Do I need a referral to see a psychologist?
No, you do not need a referral to see a psychologist.

However, if you wish to claim a rebate from Medicare then you will need a referral and a Mental Health Care Plan from your GP.

Other options to see a psychologist are to pay privately with no rebate or through your private health fund.

Do you Bulk Bill?
Unfortunately, we do not offer bulk billed services. However, we do offer options Health Care Card Centrelink holders and Pensioners so please call us if you have any questions.

CONTACT US

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BLACKTOWN PSYCHOLOGY CENTRE

 

Our  focus is a positive outcome for every person we engage with. Our strategies define goals and our therapies are tailored to achieve them. Respect, compassion and understanding without judgement allow us to be effective and earn the trust we need to treat and empower.

GET IN TOUCH

 

Suite 210 Town Centre
30 Campbell St
Blacktown NSW 2148

P: 02 9831 5955

F: 02 9831 6566

E: info@blacktownpsychology.com.au

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