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Overcoming Depression

Depression affects around one in 10 people, which presents itself in people differently and has a variety of symptoms and causes of problems with your health, relationships and well-being. The low mood which characterises depression is not the same as just having a bad day. Sufferers of depression often have to cope with a wide range of emotions and physical effects, which impact day-to-day life the approach used at our clinic is a variety of therapeutic techniques that combines psycho-dynamic psychotherapy with hypnotherapy.

What causes depression

There is no known cause for depression, nor any decisive explanation as to why it is a gradually occurring problem in some people, and a sudden illness in others. A tendency to depression can be inherited genetically. It can also be the result of traumatic past experiences, neglect or abuse, or can be triggered by an upsetting event, such as a bereavement or the end of a relationship. In general, depression is thought to be the result of negative interactions between genetics, life experience and body chemistry.

It is important to remember that anyone can get depressed, regardless of their age, background, advantages or disadvantages; so sympathy is key.

​Gastrointestinal Symptoms

People with depression may have frequent stomach problems, such as nausea, bloating, diarrhea, or constipation.

One possible explanation for these symptoms involves a neurotransmitter in the brain and gut called serotonin. The brain chemical is linked to depression because it is believed to help regulate mood, but researchers also know that it also plays a role in maintaining digestive function.


Most of the body's serotonin is produced and stored in the gut.

Researchers are very interested in the "gut-brain” connection, which they hope could reveal how mental and digestive health influence one another. In addition to serotonin, microbes found in the gut are being explored as potential contributors to everything from mood to immunity—both of which have implications for depression.

Immunity

Stress can also make a person’s immune system work less optimally, meaning they're more likely to get sick. When someone with a weakened immune system does get sick, it may take longer for them to get better.


Some infections, like the common cold, are generally not serious. However, a weak immune system puts a person at risk for developing complications from an infection or contracting an infection that is harder to treat.


The relationship between immune function and depression is still being researched. Some studies have hypothesized that chronic stress may cause an inflammatory response that can change how mood-regulating chemicals in the brain work.


Sleep Problems

When doctors and mental health professionals are considering a diagnosis of depression, sleep disorders are among the “core” symptoms they look for.


People who are depressed often have trouble sleeping. Problems may range from struggling to fall or stay asleep, being unable to get restful sleep, or sleeping too much.

The relationship between depression and sleep goes both ways, as having trouble sleeping for any reason (such as a medical condition like sleep apnea) increases a person’s risk for depression.


Some research has suggested that disturbances in circadian rhythm (which can interrupt sleep) may contribute to depression. Understanding and even learning how to alter the sleep-wake cycle is one avenue researchers are exploring as they search for new ways to treat depression.


Psychomotor Symptoms

The term “psychomotor” refers to symptoms that make a person feel as though they are thinking and/or moving at a different pace than usual.


For example, some people with depression perceive their thoughts as sluggish and feel like their movements seem heavy. Others experience symptoms at the opposite end of the spectrum. They may say that they "can’t sit still," or feel fidgety, restless, and agitated. Mentally, they may experience anxious or even intrusive thoughts.


To some extent, psychomotor symptoms become more common as someone gets older. However, while depression in the elderly is also common, it is not a normal part of aging. For this reason, doctors and mental health professionals need to also consider the possibility that psychomotor changes may be a sign of depression rather than just a part of aging.


High Blood Pressure

People who are depressed may be under stress often or for a long period of time. While it’s not the only cause, chronic stress has been known to contribute to high blood pressure (hypertension).


Chronic stress, in particular, has been linked to elevated blood pressure. In turn, hypertension increases a person’s risk of cardiovascular disease, which includes heart attacks and strokes. Based on the growing body of evidence supporting this relationship, many researchers consider depression a risk factor for cardiovascular disease.


Appetite and Weight Changes

Depression in and of itself can make someone feel like eating more or less than they typically do. People who are depressed may report they have lost weight without trying or have gained weight without being sure of the reason why.


One factor that may contribute to weight gain is “emotional eating” which refers to a person using food to self-medicate feelings of depression. These behaviors can lead to weight gain over time. If someone is overweight or obese, changes in self-image, associated health problems, and weight stigma can also contribute to (or worsen) depression.


The relationship between weight and depression may depend on more than how much someone weighs.

For example, a 2019 study proposed a specific link between higher amounts of body fat mass and depression (as the researchers did not find a link between depression and non-fat body mass).


Depression can also cause someone to lose weight. Loss of appetite, low energy, and motivation that makes preparing meals difficult, bowel symptoms, and other factors may cause weight loss in someone who is depressed. People who have eating disorders, such as anorexia nervosa, often also have depression or another mental illness.


Weight loss in eating disorders can be extreme and may cause a host of physical symptoms. Several studies have suggested that malnutrition from inadequate food intake may worsen depression, though additional research is needed to support the theory.


People who do not get enough eat for other reasons, such as those living in poverty, patients with cancer, and the elderly, are also at risk for depression related to malnutrition. Changes in appetite and accompanying weight loss or gain can also be a side effect of antidepressant medications.


Depression and therapy

Depression is debilitating and can affect not only how you feel about yourself but also impacts your relationships and your career. Using a variety of therapeutic techniques CBT, NLP and EFT with the integrative on of hypnotherapy render it a highly successful way to identify and understand depression and behavioural traits that might be causing and maintaining the client's depression. Cognitive Hypnotherapy gets to the root cause of the depression problem and changes the perception patterns. EFT empowers the client to feel calm in control and manage negative emotions.



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