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We have all dealt with moments in our life where we just don’t quite feel like ourselves. We’ve all experienced moments where it seems as though our motivation, passion, and joy seem to have faded. We often refer to these times as a “rut”, knowing that the feeling will soon fade as quickly as it arrived. But what if the rut never leaves?

If you feel trapped in a rut that doesn’t seem to begin to fade after two weeks, you may be dealing with depression. Depression can leave you feeling sad, unmotivated, and hopeless. It can affect your relationships, mood, health, and overall quality of life. If you believe that you are struggling with depression, know that you are not alone. We are here to help you develop a deeper understanding of the mental health issue.

What is Depression?

Depression is a serious mental health issue that can negatively impact your mood, thinking patterns, and enjoyment of life. Depression can have many forms, such as:

  • Clinical Depression: Also known as major depressive disorder, this form of depression covers most cases of depression that cause severe depressive symptoms that affect one’s happiness.
  • Persistent Depressive Disorder: Also referred to as dysthymia, this type of depression covers clinical depression cases that last for longer than two years- never fully going away.
  • Seasonal Affective Disorder: This form of depression comes and goes with certain seasons- most commonly in the cold fall and winter months.
  • Bipolar disorder: While this mental health disorder is not depression, it does come with depression symptoms. Those experiencing bipolar disorder will find themselves experiencing moments of mania and moments of depression.
  • Postpartum Depression: This form of depression affects new mothers (and sometimes fathers) and can be caused by hormonal and lifestyle changes as they adjust, mentally and physically, to their new baby.
  • Psychotic Depression: This form of depression is accompanied by delusions and hallucinations.
If you are experiencing any of these symptoms for longer than two weeks, seeking the help of a mental health professional may be just what you need  to feel better.

Recognizing the Signs

Depression can be devastating. It can negatively impact every aspect of your life- from your health to your happiness. If you are experiencing any of these symptoms for longer than two weeks, seeking the help of a mental health professional may be just what you need to feel better.

  • Loss of motivation. Depression can make it difficult to do much more than get out of bed. You may struggle to do your work, keep your living area clean, or do much of anything. 
  • Low self-esteem. When coping with depression, your thoughts about yourself may also begin to take on a more negative tone, making you feel guilty, lack confidence, and feel unmotivated.
  • Negative feelings. Depression causes low moods and negative feelings like sadness, irritability, anxiety, or hopelessness.
  • Negative thoughts. When dealing with depression, your mind can become a dark scary place. Your thoughts may begin to take on a more pessimistic tone, preventing you from finding the joy in life.
  • Loss of interest in the things that bring you joy. As you fall into a depression, you may feel unwilling to do the things that once brought you joy. You may pull away from your friends, drop out of the clubs you once loved, and give up on hobbies you are passionate about.
  • Substance use. Depression can be difficult to deal with. Some people turn to substances to cope. This can lead to an addiction that is hard to break.
  • Foggy thoughts. When struggling with depression, it can feel as though you are experiencing life through a fog. You may struggle with concentration and memory. 
  • Changes in sleep habits. When dealing with depression, you may find that your sleep habits are beginning to change. Some people struggle to get to sleep and find themselves tossing and turning throughout the night. Others find themselves struggling to get out of bed, feeling exhausted and drowsy throughout their days.
  • Changes in eating habits. Like sleeping habits, eating habits can change when one is dealing with depression. Some may find themselves eating more than they usually do, resulting in weight gain. Meanwhile, others may find themselves eating less than usual, resulting in weight loss.
  • Aches and pains. Sometimes, depression can cause aches and pains that cannot be physically explained. 
Seeking the help of a mental health professional is crucial to getting on the right path to healing.

Treatment Options

Depression is difficult to deal with. Fortunately, you don’t have to suffer through it alone. Seeking the help of a mental health professional can get you on the right path to feeling better in no time.

A mental health professional can help you figure out why you are feeling this way and find a treatment option that works best for you. Treatment options may include one or multiple of the following:

  • Medication: Depression is often associated with chemical changes in the brain. Antidepressants can help restore a healthy balance in the brain’s chemistry and are effective in helping the depression to resolve.
  • Neurostimulation: These types of treatments, including rTMS and ECT, stimulate certain parts of the brain using either electrical currents or magnetic fields. These treatments are done under medical observation in a hospital or clinic setting.

How Telehealth Can Help You

Depression is a severe mood disorder that can have a negative impact on your entire life. Fortunately, research has found effective treatment options to help you feel better. Seeking the help of a mental health professional is crucial to getting on the right path to healing.

Telehealth can help you work through your depression symptoms from the comfort of your home. If you are needing to seek help for depression, but can’t seem to find the time with busy schedules, struggles to get out of bed, or anxious thoughts about going to a doctor’s office, telehealth can be great to get you the help you need.

If you believe that you or a loved one are struggling with depression, it is crucial that you reach out to a mental health professional as soon as possible. Depression can be scary, lonely, and hard to deal with. Don’t suffer through it longer than you have to.

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