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Anxiety and Depression

pauline-picco-individual-counseling-and-therapy-in-beaverton-or-pauline-picco-individual-therapy-pic1Most people feel anxious or depressed at times.  Losing a loved one, getting fired from a job, going through a divorce, and other difficult situations can lead a person to feel sad, lonely, scared, nervous or anxious.  These feelings are normal reactions to life’s stressors. This is not to say that someone who is strugging with these normal feelings can not benefit from counseling.

In addition, some people experience feelings of anxiety and/or depression daily or nearly daily for no apparent reason, making it extremely difficult to carry on with normal, everyday functioning.  These people may have an anxiety disorder, depressive disorder, or both.  Scientific research indicates that there is commonly a biological predisposition (or family history) inherent in both of these mental health disorders.

It is not uncommon for someone with an anxiety disorder to also suffer from depression or vise versa. Nearly one-half of those diagnosed with depression are also diagnosed with an anxiety disorder. The good news is that these disorders are both treatable.

Major Depression is a condition in which a person feels discouraged, sad, hopeless, unmotivated or disinterested in life in general.  These symptoms last for more than 2 weeks and they interfere with daily activities, such as taking care of family, spending time with friends, or going to work or school.

Major Depression is one of the most common mental health disorders in the U.S.  In 2014, approximately 15.7 million adults age 18 or older (which is 6.7 % of all American adults) experienced at least one major depressive episode in the last year.  These episodes may occur once or twice in a lifetime, or they may recur frequently.  The tendency to give up on life is a major risk, as substantiated by the number of attempted suicides due to depression.  As such, treatment with a trained mental health therapist is crucial, as is being evaluated for antidepressant medications by a doctor. Persistent depressive disorder and Bipolar disorder are 2 other forms of depression for which treatment is needed.

Generalized Anxiety is a common form of anxiety disorder, involving nervousness excessive worry, irritability and problems sleeping and concentrating.  Panic disorder, Obsessive-compulsive disorder, and Social anxiety are other anxiety disorders.  Many people with anxiety disorders understand that their thoughts are irrational, but they still can’t stop them.  Treatment is strongly recommended in these cases as well, to help clients to improve their ability to function with their symptoms and to learn to relax and meditate in order to enjoy life more effectively.