One in every ten people is said to have suffered depression at some point in their life. Because of the wide variety of causes and symptoms, not many people understand depression to the point of seeking professional guidance.
Individuals who suffer depression normally experience a vast spectrum of physical problems and troubling emotions which tend to stick around for a much longer period.
Such people also tend to withdraw into isolation, commonly referred to as a black hole, and can't leave their homes. This is why online therapy and counseling can help play a central role in tackling depression.
Living with depression is difficult not only for the sufferers but also for the people around them. When depression starts, it's commonly mistaken for a temporal emotional problem, which is why sufferers often wait such a long time before seeking professional help. There's also the stigma aspect where the affected fear rejection, deprivation of a sense of control and ridicule. Others suffer from the additional fear of confronting their problems.
Types of Depression
Depending on the severity and how it affects a sufferer's life, depression may be classified into different categories. Some of the common classifications include:
Mild Depression - This occurs when the impact of the depression symptoms is limited and the sufferers experience a persistent low spirit and mood. There is a noticeable difficulty in self-motivation; especially in doing the things you normally enjoy. This is an opportune time to seek online therapy.
Clinical Depression - This is a more severe type of depression which may lead to hospitalization. The symptoms are prominent and interfere with your daily life. They affect your sleeping patterns, eating habits and other regular activities. Some of the clinical depression sufferers may experience suicidal thoughts and feelings of general worthlessness.
Postnatal Depression - This is a serious condition that develops after childbirth. In the recent past, it has been associated with many postnatal health complications such as ulcers, stroke, high blood pressure, and cardiac diseases.
Other types of depression include Seasonal Affective Disorder (SAD) and bipolar disorder.
Depression knows no age or sex, but rather everyone is vulnerable from the successful and famous to those on the lower end of the economic ladder. In women, depression rates tend to be twice as high as in men and the major contributing factor is a hormonal imbalance. The symptoms of depression are more prominent in women than in men.
The thing with men is they are conditioned to think of depression as a weakness, therefore, they tend to conceal the feelings of self-loathing and hopelessness. Online therapy for depression is excellent for men because of privacy and convenience. They can get help without compromising their self-esteem and ego.
Symptoms of Depression
Unlike other medical and psychological conditions, which have distinct symptoms, signs of depression are usually varied and complex. This confuses many people leading to a misinterpretation of the problem which ultimately may lead to physical illness and impaired functioning. This is why online therapy is recommended because it digs down to the root causes and accurately identifies the symptoms.
Depressed people oftentimes experience unrelenting low moods, an overwhelming sense of hopelessness, and a loss of interest particularly in pleasurable things. These symptoms may vary in intensity, length of episodes, and the frequency of occurrence. In some cases, depression may last for a few weeks, but it can also extend to months. Whenever the symptoms become stronger and long-lasting, the person in question can then be said to be living with depression.
Other symptoms of depression that may further help in diagnosis include feelings of worthlessness, repetitive thoughts of suicide and death, poor concentration, intolerance of others, anxiety and indecisiveness. Though rare, some people may experience hallucinations and psychotic symptoms.
Underlying Causes of Depression
Depression doesn't have a known cause and this is precisely why some people suddenly find themselves in depression while in others it develops gradually. Scientific research shows depression results from body chemistry and negative interaction of genetic factors as well as live events. The chemical imbalances in brain neurotransmitters have been linked through various studies to depression.
Stressful or upsetting events can trigger depression because they spark a sense of loss. For instance, people who have suffered a divorce, redundancy, bereavement, or financial problems are much more susceptible to depression. According to some experts, depression is an ingrained defense mechanism adopted by the body to escape the impact of stress on normal body functioning.
Depression can also be triggered by drug abuse, alcohol, and life-threatening illnesses. Some people tend to become depressed for no apparent reason. This is usually called endogenous depression and arises from hormonal body changes following menopause, childbirth, or pregnancy. Low self-esteem, family history, and being overly critical can also increase the risk of developing depression.
When is The Right Time for Online Therapy?
Instead of letting depression take control of your life and possibly ruining it, consider finding a therapist as soon as possible. You also need to acknowledge that indeed you have a problem, so you can effectively end the period of denial and start the healing process. While it is true depression and related symptoms can disappear on their own without medical or counseling intervention, the emotional and physical damage that this can cause is unimaginable.
Through online therapy, the respective specialist will assess your condition and ask several questions about your overall health. From the response gathered on the nature of your depression, the online therapist can then pursue appropriate treatment options.
Cognitive Behavioral Therapy (CBT) is one of the most recommended online therapy protocols for counseling. It involves sessions with a therapist as well as self-help books. The reason why depression counseling through an online platform is effective is that you can easily gain access to industry-leading counselors who will explore the underlying causes of your depression and help you to change your feelings as well as manage them effectively.
The Virtual Therapist Network has a diverse team of online therapists who offer professional guidance and support to people struggling with depression.
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