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"If you know someone who is depressed... try to understand the blackness, lethargy, hopelessness, and loneliness they are going through. Be there for them when they come through the other side. It's hard to be a friend to someone who is depressed, but it is one of the kindest, noblest, and best things you will ever do." (Stephen Fry)
What is depression?
Depression is an issue affecting many people, up to 20% of population in the UK.
The typical symptoms of depression are as follows:
- Low mood, hopelessness
- Loss of interest and pleasure in things that you normally enjoy
- Feeling bad about yourself
- Feeling tired much of the time, low energy
- Sleep disturbance, either sleeping too much or too little
- Moving about much more or much less than usual
- Difficulties with concentration
- Changes in appetite
- Thoughts of suicide
If you think you may be depressed, it is important to consult your doctor or another health professional. If you recognise these symptoms in a family member or a friend, encourage them to seek help.
There are many different explanations for why we get depressed, including psychological, physiological and social. Depressed mood can also be a side-effect of some medications, nutritional imbalances or a consequence of a traumatic event, a loss or another change, or may accompany another mental health issue, such as post-traumatic stress, social anxiety or obsessive-compulsive disorder.
The treatment which is likely to be suggested by your doctor may include anti-depressants and cognitive behavioural therapy (occasionally interpersonal therapy may also be offered on the NHS). Other treatments, including psychological or complementary therapies and nutritional interventions, are less well researched but are worth considering.
I gained experience of treating depression through my NHS work as a psychotherapist as well as in my private practice, and have trained in a range of approaches for depression treatment including Neurolinguistic Psychotherapy, Cognitive Behavioural Therapy, Emotional Freedom Techniques, Hypnotherapy and Sandplay Therapy. I also have experience of work as an EMDR Therapist in a research project studying the use of EMDR (Eye Movement Desensitisation and Reprocessing) for depression. I believe that each client is individual and will require a unique approach in treatment, and we can discuss your situation and the best way forward during the initial consultation.
Appointments are available at my clinics in Glossop, Derbyshire and in Mossley, Lancashire (both around 30 minutes drive from the centre of Manchester). Online and telephone consultations may be available subject to suitability - please enquire.
Below is an excellent 10 minutes video by Dr Mike Evans on one of the best ways to improve your health generally (including your mood) - in fact watching this can dramatically enhance your life!
Sources of information and support
Saneline Tel. 08457 678 00008457 678 000
Mind Infoline Tel. 08457 66016308457 660163
The Samaritans Tel. 08457 90909008457 909090
Manic Depression Fellowship (MDF) Castle Works, 21 St Georges Road, London SE1 6ES
Tel. 020 7793 2600020 7793 2600
SADA (Seasonal Affective Disorder Association) Tel. 01903 814 94201903 814 942
Association for Post-Natal Illness, 145 Dawes Road, Fulham, London SW6 7EB
Tel. 020 7386 0868020 7386 0868
Cruse Bereavement Care, Cruse House, 126 Sheen Road, Richmond, Surrey TW9 1UR
Tel. 0870 167 16770870 167 1677
Centre for Clinical Interventions (Australia) - free CBT-based resources for depression, bipolar disorder, low self-esteem as well as other problems
Living Life to the Full - free CBT resources for depression and anxiety
EFT Universe - main EFT (Emotional Freedom Techniques) website includes a number of articles and case studies on depression and a free manual and other resources for self-help
Uncommon Forum - a forum on psychological and self-help issues, including a popular Depression thread
If you buy any of the books through the links below it will result in me receiving a small commission from Amazon. This will help towards funding discounted treatment for people who cannot afford to pay the full fee.