Depression Counselling

What is depression?

Everyone experiences feelings of sadness, disappointment or ‘the blues’ occasionally. Depression, however, refers to a mood and symptoms that are more intense, long-lasting and distressing. Depression can also interfere with daily life, functioning and relationships.

 

In some cases, people can become depressed without knowing the cause.

 

Depressive feelings are usually accompanied by a number of signs and symptoms listed below.

Signs and symptoms of depression

Although the experience of depression will vary from person to person, feeling sadness, emptiness, and have a low mood are common symptoms. Other common symptoms of depression include:

  • Loss of interest in activities that were previously enjoyable, like going out, seeing friends, or pursuing interests and hobbies

  • Significant changes in appetite and/or weight, in the absence of dieting

  • Difficulty sleeping or excessive sleeping

  • Sluggishness and lack of motivation

  • Restlessness or agitation

  • Fatigue and loss of energy

  • Feelings of worthlessness, helplessness or hopelessness, or excessive guilt

  • Trouble concentrating or making decisions

  • Decreased interest in sex, loss of libido or performance

  • Thoughts of suicide or a feeling that life is not worth living

  • These symptoms last for most of the day, nearly every day, and are experienced persistently for at least two weeks, along with several other symptoms over the same period.

Some people dance
in the rain.
Others just get wet.

What causes depression?

There is no one cause for depression.

In some individuals, depression can be triggered by significant life events like:

  • The loss of a job

  • Long-term unemployment

  • Physical health issues

  • Family problems,

  • The death of a loved one, or

  • The loss of a close relationship

 

For other people, there is no obvious cause.

Some factors that might place a person at a higher risk of developing depression include:

  • Lifestyle: Unhealthy coping behaviours, poor health and well-being can also contribute to feeling low and depressed.

  • Social factors: Some people who experience poor attachment, neglect or trauma during childhood might be more likely to develop depression as adults. Interpersonal, family and workplace issues can also contribute to low mood.

  • Personal psychological factors: People can be more prone to depression if they tend to:

    • Dwell on negative events,

    • Worry excessively, or

    • Attend to negative information about themselves, the world or the future.

  • Family history: Having a close relative with depression increases the chance of developing depression. This does not mean depression is inevitable, as other factors increase or decrease risk.

 

  • Neurochemistry: Changes in brain chemicals like: serotonin; norepinephrine; and dopamine play a role in depression.

Depression treatments that help

There are many effective psychological treatments for depression. Some specialised forms of psychological intervention are more effective than general supportive counselling as they address current issues and symptoms. They also aim to reduce the likelihood of future depressive episodes.

  • Cognitive behaviour therapy (CBT): Focuses on unhelpful thoughts about self, others and the future that contribute to depression. The goal is to identify, examine, and modify unhelpful thoughts and behaviours to improve mood and quality of life. This includes problem-solving and engaging in a range and balance of enjoyable activities daily to gain a sense of achievement.

 

  • Interpersonal psychotherapy (IPT): Addresses problems in relationships. It reviews expectations about others that contribute to depression. The aims include helping the individual find new ways to:

    • Develop and nurture relationships

    • Avoid and resolve conflicts when they occur

    • Identify and express emotions

    • Communicate more effectively

    • Adapt to life-role changes and

    • Improve social support networks.

 

  • Short-term psychodynamic psychotherapy (STPP): Helps you become more aware and reflective of feelings, desires, motivations and thoughts. The goals of therapy are to identify and change unhelpful responses. These unhelpful responses can impact negatively on our daily experiences and personal relationships. Therapy reduces vulnerability and builds resilience.

At iflow psychology we use an integrative approach drawing on various therapeutic models and tailor treatment to each individual’s needs. We teach a set of basic tools to enhance relaxation and quality of life as a foundation while simultaneously working on presenting issues. We promote engagement in activities that involve ‘flow’ states to assist in achieving an optimal life style and quality of life.

In addition to the above psychological techniques, making simple changes to a person’s lifestyle can help with depression. Lifestyle changes can include:

  • Regular exercise,

  • Reducing or giving up alcohol and caffeine

  • Engaging in enjoyable activities

  • Improving skills in managing time

  • Having adequate sleep.

How an Depression Psychologist can help

Our depression psychologists will ask some questions about your history, circumstances, thoughts, feelings and behaviours. We might also use questionnaires to gather more information.

 

Together, we work towards an understanding of factors that contribute to your difficulties. A treatment plan is developed between the client and the psychologist. The psychologist will use an integrative approach including mindfulness and relaxation to help enhance mood and quality of life.

Through the process of depression counselling, the psychologist can also assist making lifestyle changes to enhance resilience to cope better and reduce symptoms of depression.

When to access our depression counselling services?

If depression is affecting a person’s work, school, home life, or relationships, psychological assistance should be considered.

 

iflow psychology counselling services can assist. Just call contact us or book an appointment online using the buttons below.

You can also claim a partial rebate from Medicare for up to twenty sessions per calendar year. If you would like to claim the rebate then ask your treating doctor to provide a referral and Mental Health Plan.

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Book online

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Contact us

To send a message or speak to our friendly administration team just click on the button below.

02 6061 1144

48 Norton Street

Leichhardt NSW 2040

Sydney AUSTRALIA

admin@iflowpsychology.com.au

Meet Team

If you would like to more information on our psychologists click on the button below.