“Depression is energy blocked within.” ~ Dr. Dana Barton
To be diagnosed with depression,
you would need to be experiencing some,
if not all, of these common symptoms for at least 2 weeks.
- Feelings of sadness, anxiety, or numbness, and emptiness;
- Feelings of hopelessness and helplessness;
- Feelings of guilt, shame, and worthlessness;
- Feelings of extreme fatigue;
- Loss of interest in activities;
- A sense of isolation;
- Sleeping pattern changes;
- Appetite/weight changes;
- Difficulty concentrating, remembering, and making decisions;
- Thoughts of death or suicide; and
Other physical symptoms such as pain or digestive problems that are non-responsive to treatments.
Although depression can feel devastating, it is actually a coping mechanism. Depression is your body’s natural reaction to extreme stress. . Imagine that you are working on a computer that is no longer responding, no matter what you do. What do you do about it? You probably need to shut it down entirely. When you experience depression, your mental and physical systems need to enter the shutdown mode to rest and restore. The problem is, however, that our society values productivity and achievement so much that it leaves no room or time for rest and restoration.
If this sounds like your situation, medication may be of help. You family doctor can give you some sample medication and/or refer you to a psychiatrist who helps you find the right medication and dosage and monitors how it works for you. This treatment can get you back on your horse right away. However, it also can take a while and might involve some physical and mental struggles in finding the right medication. Medication also does not address some of the deep-rooted thought patterns that wound you down to depression in the first place. This is where talk therapy and psychotherapy can help.
On top of psychotherapy, another critical element in recovery is being able to share openly about your experience with depression. Click here to find a peer support group near you and begin the healing journey.