Depression and Anxiety

If One Breathes, One Experiences Anxiety Some Of The Time.

It is part of the human condition, in times of transition and when things are changing very quickly.

Whether because of a new role, i.e. parenting for the first time, a new job, moving, dating, a change in role or responsibilities.

What some take in stride, others will feel overwhelmed by, with worry about the unknown. For some the stressor may be as complex as a new baby simultaneous with a loss of income, or finishing a PhD dissertation. While for others, it is a closet that needs to be cleaned out before a visit from friends who are not due for a couple of months.

We all seem to have different thresholds of stress which can cause feelings of anxiety, whether because we “got it “ from our parents genes, or the environment we grew up in. Individuals with learning disorders, Attention Deficit Disorder, or Attention Deficit and Hyperactive Disorder, may cause symptoms of Anxiety as early as school, when they cannot meet “normal” expectations of parents and/or teachers.

It is only when worry becomes intrusive, persistent and interferes with one’s quality of life, that it needs to be addressed. Sometimes, anxiety can become severe enough to induce panic attacks, which can be so physically debilitating that an individual can confuse it with a heart attack, and actually go to the hospital.

Clinical anxiety and clinical depression are often become intertwined, with either disorder inducing the other. Depression involves sadness, a lack of enjoyment in activities that one used to enjoy, and as with anxiety, also affects, one’s body, mood, and thoughts. An individual may or may sleep and eat much more, or much less than usual. One ‘s body may experience headaches, stomach pain, fatigue, or a change in appetite, insomnia, or sleeping too much. Depression can be mild, so mild, that one can wonder why others may be making such a big fuss when talking about wonderful they feel when they look at the leaves changing color in the fall. “Why are they making such a fuss?’ they might wonder. Depression can become so severe that getting out of bed seems impossible and pointless, in which thoughts of the future may invoke feelings of hopelessness, and that a change for the better may seem hopeless, till one cannot even imagine that the future can bring anything good. Sometimes it can progress to the point that people literally want to die.

Whether depression or anxiety appears to display itself first, the other can develop as well. The good news is that there are good treatments to resolve both, including but not limited to CBT, also know as Cognitive Behavioral Therapy, learning new and better coping skills, along with other treatments, depending on your situation. I have over 30 years of experience treating people in all kinds of settings, including a private practice that I began in 1985, which also has included online counseling for the past decade.