Depression is a mood disorder characterized by persistent feelings of sadness, hopelessness, irritability and/or a loss of interest and pleasure in activities an individual previously enjoyed.
In addition to low mood and increased irritability, individuals with depression may also experience: - Weight loss or gain - Significant changes in sleep patterns (e.g.,trouble sleeping, excessive sleeping) - Significant changes in appetite (e.g., eating too much, eating too little) - Loss of energy - Difficulty concentrating - Feelings of worthlessness or guilt - Recurrent thoughts of death, suicide, or harming oneself
When To Seek Help
- It is persistent. Symptoms have continued for at least two weeks. - It is affecting your relationships with loved ones - It is interfering with your ability to work - It is causing you to feel hopeless about the future -You are experiencing feelings of worthlessness and self-rejection - You have noticed a significant decrease in your level of tolerance for minor frustrations - You often turn to alcohol or substance use to cope with feelings of sadness and “numbness” - You are having thoughts of suicide or self-harm
If you think you may be experiencing depression, seek help from a registered health professional (e.g., social worker, counsellor, psychologist, nurse, family doctor, psychiatrist). If you are having immediate thoughts of suicide or self-harm, go directly to the Emergency Department of the nearest hospital or call 9-1-1.
The following have been found to help manage some symptoms of depression: - Regular exercise - Eating a balanced diet - Learning or maintaining healthy sleep habits - Spending quality time with loved ones - Spending time doing safe activities you enjoy
How Therapy Can Help
Therapy can help you:
- Learn skills to cope with and manage symptoms - Identify and change negative thought patterns that may be affecting your current feelings and behaviours - Set realistic goals and regain a sense of hope about the future - Regain or develop a sense of self-acceptance - Identify and respond to events that may be contributing to your depression - Receive support and learn strategies from others who are also experiencing depression (Group Therapy) - Receive support in addressing issues in important relationships in your life (Couples Therapy, Family Therapy, Parent-Coaching)