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Depression  

 

Depression has become a common term used by teens, young adults, and adults. With the increase in use, there is also an increase in confusion about what it means and what options are available for support. 

 

What is it?

Periodic sadness is a normal emotion experienced at different times throughout one’s life. Depression is different from periodic sadness. Depression is long lasting despair or extreme sadness that interferes with daily activities. It is one of the most common mental health conditions being treated.

 

Symptoms:

  • Feeling sad or having a depressed mood

  • Irritability 

  • Loss of interest or pleasure in activities once enjoyed

  • Changes in appetite — weight loss or gain unrelated to dieting

  • Trouble sleeping or sleeping too much

  • Loss of energy or increased fatigue

  • Increase in purposeless physical activity (e.g., inability to sit still, pacing, handwringing) or slowed movements or speech (these actions must be severe enough to be observable by others)

  • Feeling worthless or guilty

  • Difficulty thinking, concentrating or making decisions

  • Thoughts of death or suicide

  • And others

Any of these symptoms that persist longer than two weeks and affect your ability to function in daily activities is worth seeking support for. Depression is treatable and there are options to get out from underneath the dark cloud it casts.

 

A first step could be to talk to your primary care physician to see if any medical conditions are contributing to your symptoms. Vitamin deficiencies or hormone imbalances can mimic depression symptoms. If medical conditions are ruled out, your primary care physician may suggest medication or therapy options for treatment. While medications can be helpful, they are not for everyone. Talk with your physician about any questions or concerns you have about medications and all the options available to you if you are not eager to take medicine. Working with a therapist is a great option in combination with medication or as a stand-alone method.

If you are already working with a mental health therapist, share any changes in symptoms or ability to function and your concerns.

We are here to help!

 

You do not have to walk this journey alone. There is hope in this darkness. Depression is treatable.

What NewPath Offers:

We have several therapeutic treatment options available here.

  • CBT (Cognitive Behavioral therapy)

  • ACT (Acceptance and Commitment Therapy)

  • Solution Focused therapy

  • Interpersonal therapy

  • And more

 

As you wait for your appointment, some things that may help:

  • Get out for a walk – even if just around the block.  Just a little bit of movement can help lower stress hormones and release endorphins. 

  • Try getting a good night’s sleep – swap out your screen time for a good book or try using a meditation app to prepare your body for bed. 

  • Connect with someone you care about – a quick phone call or text can help interrupt a negative flow, whether we’re asking for support or just checking in 

  • Nourish your brain and body – eat foods that give you energy and feed your brain.  Enjoy an apple with peanut butter, a strawberry and kale salad with walnuts, or some yogurt with blueberries and oats. 

  • Plan something fun – as hard as it may be when you’re really down, taking the time to do something you enjoy can be like opening a window to let the light in, especially when you share the experience with others 

  • Surround yourself with trees or flowers – even a few minutes at a nearby park will help the oxygen in your body and balance your mood 

  • Write about anything – studies show that taking the time to put our thoughts down on paper can improve emotional regulation and even boost your immune system 

Get Help

If you are feeling stuck in prolonged sadness and are interested in seeing a therapist, please reach out to our Client Services Coordinator to talk about getting started. 

For more information please call 763-566-0088 and speak to our Client Services Coordinator or stop by the NewPath Mental Health Services office at 8401 Wayzata Blvd., Suite 340, Golden Valley, MN 55426 to find out about services you are interested in.

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