What is Depression?
The Oxford Reference Dictionary says that depression is "as state of extreme dejection often with physical symptoms". There are, as with anything, different types of this condition which range in duration and severity.
The human condition is one that brings with it what is often called "moods". You can be in a good, bad, high, low or indifferent mood. It is normal to experience all these moods at different times. Some of these moods can be started by conscious events in our lives whilst at other times we may be unaware of why we feel a particular way. Sometimes there may be a physical reason for feeling one of these moods.
The word 'depression' or 'feeling depressed' is often used to refer to feeling 'blue' or 'down' even though this may state may last for only a short period of time. Referring to this short time of feeling down as depression is not accurate and it is important to distinguish between occasional low moods and depression.
Depression is when someone experiences a sustained period of dejection or feeling low that seems to have little respite or it can be a low mood that seems to continue to return on a regular basis. To this end there are categories of depression ranging from what is considered mild depression to the heavier and longer lasting low moods of chronic, clinical or manic depression.
What are the Symptoms of Depression?
Typically a person with depression may experience any or all of the following:
1) Loss of appetite
2) Broken sleep or insomnia
3) A constant feeling of dread
4) A lack of motivation
5) Feelings of guilt
6) Low self esteem and self confidence
7) A sense of being trapped with no means of escape
8) A sense of shame and failing
9) A pessimistic outlook on life (always expecting the worst to happen)
10) A lack of energy
11) A hunched stance, unhappy expression and negative attitude to any or everything
12) A sense of being a victim or always having bad luck
13) A high level of stress or anxiety
In the mildly depressed person only some of the above may apply for only a short period of time. In the person with manic depression many more of these symptoms may be true and can be coupled with psychotic episodes of delusions, hallucinations and a loss of a sense of reality. Anyone with manic depression should be under the supervision of a psychiatrist and will probably be prescribed drugs to help the condition.
It is the mild forms of depression that other forms of help such as counseling, hypnotherapy and EFT may be useful. Certainly if you do feel that you are depressed, even if it is only a mild form of depression and has been with you for a only few days or keeps returning sporadically you should go and see your doctor first. It is not the intention of this article to address anything other than mild depression.
There are a number of events that can trigger mild depression. These can be:
1) A divorce
2) Shock or upsetting news
3) Loss of a job
4) Loss of the home
5) Being assaulted (mugged)
6) A burglary
7) Rape or constant abuse
8) Physical, verbal or psychological abuse at home or at work
These 'life event's' happen to all of us. It is how we perceive them and ultimately deal with them that make the difference between someone who handles the crisis and someone who feels unable to cope. Even children can suffer with depression, which may be due to factors in the home or at school.
For those people with mild depression which they know has been caused by a particular event or events, an Up from Depression self hypnosis CD may help.