WHAT IS INVOLVED?
THE S.A.D. FAQ'S
Stress. Anxiety. Depression. The SAD’s are serious medical conditions that can find sufferers struggling to cope…
Few of us are prepared for it and many have a hard time understanding exactly what is happening or why it’s happening and unless you’ve experienced them first hand, you can’t imagine how overwhelming they can be.
So here are a few FAQ’s that might shed some light on the dark places:
WHAT IS DEPRESSION?
Depression is an empty void, a zone of existence where hopelessness and despair are constant companions. Depression leaves you without motivation to do even the simplest things, making it debilitating, disabling and devastating.
Unfortunately, clinical depression seldom (if ever) clears up on its own and without treatment and intervention it's likely to continue indefinitely.
AM I DEPRESSED?
If you lack energy and motivation and have lost your ability to find enjoyment in life, there is a good chance you’re suffering from depression.
WHAT IS ANXIETY?
Anxiety in general is a fairly normal stress response. But when fear, worry and nervousness become chronic, resulting in multiple “fight-or-flight” type physical responses out of all proportion to the situations that cause them, these are signs that indicate an anxiety disorder has developed.
There are 7 categories of disorder:
Generalized anxiety disorder (GAD)
Social anxiety disorder (SAD)
Post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD)
Obsessive-compulsive disorder (OCD)
Agoraphobia (fear of leaving the safety of home)
Phobias (i.e., fear of heights, enclosed spaces, insects, water, etc.)
All cause symptoms consistent with severe anxiety (rapid heartbeat, dizziness, breathing difficulties, sweating, dry mouth, intense fear of fainting, inability to think or concentrate, insomnia, energy loss...the list is long!).
IS DEPRESSION & ANXIETY RELATED?
Depression and anxiety disorders are by far the most common mental health disorders and are frequently diagnosed together. While each is a distinctive condition, both thrive on continuously negative, pessimistic thinking and one may easily emerge as a “side effect” of the other. This is especially true for anxiety disorder sufferers, who often develop depression following years of chronic tension.
WHAT CAUSES DEPRESSION & ANXIETY?
Mental health professionals agree that some combination of heredity, brain chemistry, personality, family experience and a history of trauma play a role in the development of both depression and anxiety disorders.
They are a reaction to trouble just as much as they are a cause of it and psychotherapists working with sufferers of depression or severe anxiety will try various strategies to help them overcome their debilitating symptoms and develop real internal strength, energy & resilience
WHAT ARE THE BEST EVIDENCE BASED TREATMENTS FOR DEPRESSION & ANXIETY?
Psychotherapy such as PST, combined with antidepressant medication is usually prescribed for those suffering from depression and/or severe anxiety. But pharmaceutical medications often have troubling side effects and will not work for everyone.
Complimentary forms of treatment for depression are quite effective in many cases, although they are seldom prescribed separately from a comprehensive psychotherapy program. Popular forms of evidence-based alternative treatment include:
Herbal remedies or supplements
Healthy diet and exercise
Art, drama or music therapy
Each of these practices is designed to promote psychological and emotional equilibrium, which not surprisingly is an effective antidote to depression and anxiety.
WHAT SHOULD I DO IF I THINK I HAVE THE S.A.D'S?
First, you should make an appointment with your GP, who can give you a complete examination and either discover or rule out any other explanation for your symptoms of anxiety or depression. Assuming no such explanations are found, your next step is to make an appointment with us at PST by the SEA for a full evaluation.
WHAT IS MY LONG TERM PROGNOSIS?
Left untreated, stress, anxiety & depression can become chronic and sufferers may eventually become suicidal. The conditions are extremely amenable to treatment as long as treatment programs are customized for each individual and victims are cooperative and engaged in the healing process.
Stress, anxiety and depression, when managed intelligently, can generally be overcome completely. No two cases are exactly alike, but mental health professionals know this and will work with you to create a recovery plan that addresses your individual needs.
PST by the SEA.
Andrew Coutts 0412 126294