The nature of depression can convince you that change is not possible, but depression is very treatable with psychotherapy and, in some cases, a combination of medication and psychotherapy. Depression symptoms can include:
- feelings of sadness and unhappiness
- irritability or frustration even over small matters
- insomnia or excessive sleeping, changes in appetite, agitation or restlessness,
- slowed thinking or body movements
- indecisiveness or decreased concentration
- feelings of worthlessness or guilt
- crying spells for no apparent reason
- recurrent thoughts of death, dying , or suicide
- unexplained physical problems such as back pain or headaches
Fluctuations in mood can accompany reproductive events, and for some women, it includes depression. Women’s reproductive events include the menstrual cycle, pregnancy, the post pregnancy period, infertility, menopause, and sometimes the decision not to have children. Research has confirmed that hormones have an affect on our brain chemistry. Caring for children and aging parents and social expectations around roles may in part contribute to the prevalence of depression in women.
The good news is that supportive counseling can help ease the pain of depression, and can address specifically the feelings of hopelessness that accompany depression. I incorporate a cognitive/behavioral approach that is effective is changing the pessimistic ideas, unrealistic expectations, and overly critical self-evaluations that contribute to creating and sustaining depression. I work with clients in developing positive life goals, and a more positive view of themselves. As clients feel better about themselves, the more they have to give to prioritizing their own self care, and life-giving relationships and activities.
Problem solving therapy may be incorporated as well to address the areas of your life that are creating significant stress and contributing to the depression. I find an individualized approach to depression and the contributing factors best meets the needs of clients and informs the important process of developing therapy goals.