Depression Counselling Perth
Depression Counselling can help you manage depression. In general, depression is caused be a mixture of ‘pressure’ or ‘strain’ which can be mild or relentless, combined with vulnerability or predisposition to depression, which, too, can range from mild to severe. Depression can appear when we least expect it, for example some women experience depression during pregnancy. Changes to their body that they feel they have no control over, intense mood swings is also common.
We must not confuse feeling sad/low with being depressed. For each type of depression, there are likely to be different mixtures of causes. For psychotic or melancholic depression, physical and biological factors are generally more relevant. By contrast, for non-melancholic depression, the role of personality and stressful life events are generally far more relevant. Depression is unlikely to occur without life events, but the risk of developing depression as a result of some such event is strongly genetically determined.
“Managing depression takes strength and commitment to yourself.” – Lynne Foote
Depression Counselling – Genetics
Contrary to popular opinion that depression is due to life experience and/or personality factors, there is strong evidence that genetics are a significant factor in a person’s predisposition towards developing depression. Those who research depressions have been able to determine that to some degree depressive illnesses can be inherited however this doesn’t signify we are destined to become depressed.
Depression Counselling – Biochemical
It is probable that most instances of clinical depression, neurotransmitter function is disrupted. Neurotransmitters are chemicals that carry signals from one part of the brain to the next. There are many neurotransmitters, serving different purposes, however three important ones that affect a person’s mood serotonin, noradrenalin and dopamine.
In normal brain function, neurotransmitters jump from one nerve cell to the next, with the signal being as strong in the second and subsequent cells as it was in the first. In depressed people the mood regulating neurotransmitters fail to function normally, the signal is either depleted or disrupted before passing to the next nerve cell.
Non-melancholic depression, it is likely that the transmission of serotonin is reduced or less active, whereas in people with melancholic and psychotic depression, the neurotransmitters noradrenalin and dopamine are more likely to have failed or be functioning abnormally.
Depression Counselling – Illness
Illness can lead to depression through the lowered mood that we can experience when unwell, in pain or discomfort, and less able to do things we enjoy. Illness also can restrict us in a way that leads to depression. Even if the illness isn’t making us feel down we still end up with depression. Some over the counter medications can lower our mood and if taken for long periods of time can lead to depression.
Depression Counselling – Ageing
As we age, our brain’s ability (in terms of functioning) reduces, while certain neurotransmitters (which influence mood state) can become affected.
✓ Developing dementia may at some stage (often early on) develop a severe depression for the first time.
✓ Wear and tear, basically the ageing process, particularly in people who are vulnerable.
✓ Bad Life choices over many years can lead to depression, for example high intake of alcohol.
Depression Counselling – Gender
Essentially, equal numbers of men and women develop melancholic depression. However, studies have shown that there is a much greater likelihood of women developing non-melancholic depression than men.
✓ Women are more likely to internalise stress, thereby placing them at greater risk of developing depression;
✓ Additionally, women in unsatisfactory marriages or a number of young children are highly over represented among depressed people, suggesting a sex-role component or a reduced inability to seek assistance or support.
✓ Feeling a sense of loss of identity, feeling alone and or trapped.
✓ Hormonal factors commencing in puberty may account for increased chance in women developing depression.
Depression Counselling – Stress
It is imperative to recognise that nearly every individual can be stressed and feeling sad or low by certain events. Most people get over the stress or sadness within days or weeks while others do not.
✓ Past and long-standing stresses can increase the chance of an individual developing depression in later years. An example is an abusive or uncaring parent, which may result in the child developing a low self esteem and thus being vulnerable to develop depression in adult life.
✓ The events that are most likely to ‘trigger’ depression are ones where individual’s self esteem is put at risk, compromised or devalued. For most adults, self-esteem is closely linked to an intimate relationship as well as in other important areas, such as a job. Thus, the break-down of a relationship or marriage is a very common trigger for depression.
✓ A sense of shame, such as not living up to their own and others’ expectations, thus reducing self-esteem.
The impact of life events upon melancholic depression is not always clear. They may serve to trigger the depression – or rekindle it – rather than cause it.
Depression Counselling – Personality
Research has shown that people with the following personality types are most at risk of developing depression than others.
✓ High levels of anxiety, which can be experienced as an internalized anxious worrying style or as a more externalized irritability.
✓ Self criticism or low self-esteem
✓ Interpersonal sensitivity
Points to Remember
✓ There is no solitary basis for depression; rather it’s a combination of pressure and a person’s vulnerability to developing depression.
✓ Depression can be inherited.
✓ Biological causes for depression can include ill health, ageing and gender.
✓ Stress can trigger depression however understanding its particular significance to the person is vital.
✓ Certain temperament and personality styles pose risks for developing depression.
✓ Get professional support.