Mostly Cs: You May Not Be Suffering From Anxiety Or Depression
Remember, everyone goes through tough periods. All people feel sad or anxious from time to time. Its part of the human experience. It shouldnt be considered threatening or problematic, says , a licensed psychologist in Durham, NC.
Life is hard. Its about learning how to manage your feelings so you can enjoy your life.
What Causes Depression Or Anxiety
Depression and anxiety can happen for no obvious reason. But in many cases it can be triggered by certain life events, such as:
- money or finance issues
- the time of year.
These situations might make anyone feel low and not everyone who experiences these goes on to develop depression. But thinking about any triggers can help you understand your feelings.
Everyone feels down from time to time, but if you’ve not been feeling yourself for a while it’s time to talk to someone like your doctor, nurse or a trusted friend or family member.
Symptoms Of Anxiety And Depression
According to the current Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders , the standard classification of mental disorders used by mental health professionals in the United States, anxiety and depression can share several common symptoms, including, but not limited to:
- Being easily fatigued
- Sleep disturbance
Other signs that a person may suffer from both anxiety disorder and depression include:
- Constant, irrational fear and worry
- Physical symptoms like rapid heartbeat, headaches, hot flashes, sweating, abdominal pain, and/or difficulty breathing
- Changes in eating, either too much or too little
- Persistent feelings of sadness or worthlessness
- Loss of interest in hobbies and activities
- Inability to relax
- Panic attacks
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How To Tell If You Have Anxiety Depression Or Both
As you can see from the symptom descriptions, there is some cross-over between the two. In mental health, one of the more common comorbidities is that of depression and anxiety. This means that more than one disease or condition can be present in the same person at the same time. In fact, some studies show that 60% of those with anxiety will also have symptoms of depression and the numbers are similar for those with depression.
Anxiety and depression can occur sequentially, one after another, or they can co-occur, said Jerimya Fox, a licensed professional counselor and a doctor of behavioral health at Banner Behavioral Health Hospital. This is because the same neurotransmitters, including serotonin, dopamine and epinephrine, are involved in both.
To meet the diagnostic criteria for an anxiety disorder or depression, however, symptoms must be persistent and impairing.
For anxiety, these must persist for several months, and for depression a couple weeks, Dr. Fox said.
To assess the severity of your symptoms, Dr. Fox suggests the following:
- Ask a trusted family member or friend if they have noticed changes in your behavior.
- Recognize the severity of your symptoms: mild, moderate or severe.
- Track your thoughts and symptoms. How often are you getting sick? How often are you having racing thoughts? How often are you having difficulty getting out of bed?
How Do You Treat Depression And Anxiety
It can be harder for doctors to diagnose and treat depression and anxiety when they happen together. That’s why it’s important to tell your doctor about all of your symptoms.
The treatment for both anxiety and depression involves talk therapy, medication, or a combination of the two. Cognitive behavioral therapy is one of the main talk therapies. It teaches you how to think and behave differently to stop triggering your anxiety or depression.
Antidepressants are medicines that treat depression. They change the balance of chemicals in your brain to improve your mood. Anti-anxiety drugs, antidepressants, and beta-blockers are treatments for anxiety.
The sooner you start treatment, the more likely it will help you. Let your doctor know if the treatment you’re on doesn’t relieve your symptoms or if it causes side effects. It may take a few tries to find the treatment that works best for you.
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How Is Depression Treated
The first step to getting treatment is to see your GP. If your GP thinks you have depression, they will talk to you about the treatments they can offer.
What are talking therapies?
Talking therapy is a general term to describe any psychological therapy that involves talking. You may also hear the terms counselling or psychotherapy used to describe talking therapy.
Therapy should offer you a safe, confidential place to talk about your life and anything confusing, painful or uncomfortable. It allows you to talk with someone who is trained to listen attentively and to help you improve things.
Talking therapy often takes place face to face. But you may also be able to have therapy over the phone, by video call or online. There are different types of talking therapy that you might be offered. These include:
- cognitive-behavioural therapy,
- mindfulness based therapy, and
The type of therapy you are offered will depend on the cause of your symptoms and their severity. Therapies may also have different levels based on how long or intense the treatment is.
Ask your GP about therapy if you think it might help. Some of these therapies will be available in your area. Some areas offer a self-referral option for NHS talking therapies. Please refer to your local Improving Access to Psychological Therapies service to find out about this option.
You may also be able to access therapy privately or through your employer in an Employee Assistance Programme.
How can exercise help?
Signs And Symptoms Of Anxiety
For people with anxiety disorders, the anxiety is often persistent and can get worse over time. The symptoms may interfere with their daily life.
Some of the most common signs and symptoms of anxiety include:
- Excessive fear and worry
If you experience these symptoms for six months or longer, you may have an anxiety disorder.
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Symptoms Of Major Depression
- sleep disturbance
- muscle tension.
If youve experienced these symptoms most days for more than six months, and they cause distress in your daily life, then you may receive a diagnosis of generalized anxiety disorder. Other types of anxiety disorders include separation anxiety, panic disorder, or phobias, among others.
If you compare the two lists of symptoms, you can see that there is some overlap. Sleep problems, trouble concentrating, and fatigue are all symptoms of both anxiety and depression. Irritability may also manifest in forms of anxiety or depression .
There are however, some distinguishing features. People with depression move slowly, and their reactions can seem flattened or dulled. People with anxiety tend to be more keyed up, as they struggle to manage their racing thoughts. Another distinguishing feature is the presence of fear about the future in people with anxiety. Depressed people who do not have anxiety are less likely to be fraught with worry about future events, as they are often resigned to believing that things will continue to be bad. In other words, they may predict the future based on how they feel in the moment.
Physical Signs Of Anxiety
The physical state of anxiety can be conceptualized overall as that of heightened arousal. Specific characteristics include:
- Difficulty concentrating due to state of agitation or racing thoughts
- Difficulty falling or staying asleep due to racing thoughts or other physical symptoms
Depression is primarily characterized by changes in usual physical processes from baseline, such as:
- Difficulty with concentration, focus, and memory due to ruminative thought processes or other physical symptoms
- Lack of energy
- Loss of appetite or a significant increase in appetite
- Moving or talking more slowly than usual
- Physical achiness without cause
- Sleeping much more or much less than is typical due to ruminative thought processes or low energy
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How Do I Deal With Anxiety
There are many ways to deal with anxiety and combining a variety of approaches may help. For those with a diagnosed anxiety disorder, a combination of psychotherapy alongside a medication plan can be very effective. For those who experience anxiety from time to time, there are a variety of relaxation techniques to try that may quell feelings of worry or fear: breathing techniques, meditation, and progressive muscle relaxation are just some examples of techniques to try. Finding a distraction, taking part in physical activity, and talking to someone you trust are also all great options for relieving everyday anxiety.
Identifying Signs Of Anxiety And Depression
What is stress, and what happens when you can’t cope well with it?
Stress can present itself after being fired from a job, going through a divorce or losing a loved one. Even getting married, transitioning to a new job or having a baby can cause stress. Everyone experiences stress at one time or another.
Many people define stress as either good or bad when it’s neither. Stress is an event you view as out of your control, and it typically occurs outside your daily routines. How you react shapes your ability to cope with these and other similar events in the future.
When people struggle to cope with stressful situations, depression and anxiety become more noticeable.
Anxiety and depressive disorders are common. These illnesses affect more than 40 million adults in the U.S., or about 18% of the population, every year. The World Health Organization has estimated that the COVID-19 pandemic led to a 27.6% increase in depression and 25.6% increase in anxiety disorders worldwide in 2020.
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How Can I Use Cbd Oil For Anxiety
Early research is promising regarding the ability of CBD oil to help relieve anxiety. Although more research is needed, specifically on humans and generalized anxiety disorder to confirm if CBD can reduce the symptoms of anxiety, you may be interested in talking to your doctor to figure out a starting dosage that is right for you. While CBD is generally considered safe, some people who take CBD may experience some side effects such as diarrhea, fatigue, and changes in appetite. CBD may also interfere with certain medications or dietary supplements. One case study on a child under 18 offered evidence that CBD is effective as a safe alternative treatment to traditional psychiatric medications for reducing anxiety and insomnia.
The Most Common Anxiety Disorders Include:
- Specific phobias Phobias could be related to animals, like spiders, cats or dogs the natural environment, such as heights, storms or being in water blood injection injury, which is a fear of needles or invasive medical procedures or locations, like airplanes, elevators or enclosed places.
- Social anxiety disorder
- This is an abrupt surge of intense fear or discomfort.
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Make Time For Rest And Relaxation
Mental health conditions like depression and anxiety can affect your energy and motivation, which often only adds to feelings of guilt and worry.
Remember, though: Depression and anxiety are health conditions. If you had the flu, youd need time to rest, right? Mental health symptoms require recovery time, too.
Instead of fixating on the things you think you should be doing, honor your needs by taking time for activities that soothe and relax you. Maybe this includes things like:
- watching a comforting movie or TV show
- re-reading a favorite book
Information For Family Carers And Friends
You can get support if you are a carer, friend or family member of someone living with depression.
Being a carer might mean you can claim certain benefits that might help you and the person you care for. For more information, please see the Mental Health and Money Advice services website:www.mentalhealthandmoneyadvice.org/en/welfare-benefits/what-benefits-are-available-for-mental-health-carers/
You could also get in touch with carer support groups or sibling support groups. You can search for local groups in your area online or ask your GP.
You can ask your local authority for a carers assessment if you need more practical support to help care for someone.
As a carer you should be involved in decisions about care planning. There are rules about information sharing and confidentiality which may make it difficult for you to get all the information you need in some circumstances.
You can find out more information about:
How can I support the person that I care for?
You might find it easier to support someone with depression if you understand their symptoms, treatment and self-management skills. You can use this to support them to get help and stay well.
Below are some initial suggestions for providing practical day to day support to someone with depression.
You can find out more information about:
You can find more information about:
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What If My Symptoms Dont Improve
If youre not responding to treatment, you may live with treatment resistant depression. This is when your symptoms have not improved after at least 2 standard treatments. This can also be known as treatment-refractory depression.
There is currently no official criteria used to diagnose treatment resistant depression.
What treatment is available for treatment-resistant depression?There are treatment options for treatment resistant depression. Even if antidepressants have not worked already for you, your doctor may suggest a different antidepressant from a different class.
The new antidepressant you are offered will depend on the first antidepressant you were given.
Sometimes your doctor can prescribe a second type of medication to go with your antidepressant. This can sometimes help the antidepressant work better than it does by itself.
Where antidepressants have not worked, your doctor may suggest talking therapies, ECT or brain stimulation treatments. See the previous section for more information on these.
What is an implanted vagus nerve stimulator, and how is it used in treatment resistant depression?If you live with treatment resistant depression, and youve not responded to other treatments, you may be able ask for an implanted vagus nerve stimulator.
Please speak to your doctor if youre interested in this treatment and for more information. You may be able to get this treatment funded through an Individual Funding Request.
- NHS – Your Rights by clicking here.
How Long Does It Take To Diagnose Depression
It can take weeks after depression begins before it is diagnosed. This is partly because people may be resistant to ask for help, says Rudy Nydegger, PhD, Professor Emeritus of psychology and management at Union College and chief in the Division of Psychology at Ellis Hospital, both in Schenectady, New York.
When a primary care doctor is looking into whether a person is depressed, they may initially think the symptoms could be caused by a physical illness, Nydegger explains. Often, a primary care doctor may be looking at the persons medications or whether something is going on physiologically, he says. They are trying to rule out medical causes as the reason for the symptoms, which is appropriate, but then it can take longer to get a diagnosis.
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It’s Easy To Overlook The Clues That You May Need Help For One Of These Common Conditions
The signs of mental illness aren’t always obvious. Subtle changes in mood or behavior are often attributed to aging, just like weaker muscles and fuzzy thinking. “There’s a tendency to dismiss it as, ‘Well, of course I’m worried, I have heart disease,’ or, ‘Of course I’m sad, I’m not as relevant as I once was,'” says Dr. Michael Craig Miller, an assistant professor of psychiatry at Harvard Medical School.
But depression and anxiety do not need to be routine parts of aging. Getting help for these feelings can help you maintain your health and enjoy life to the fullest.
What If I Am Not Happy With My Treatment
If you are not happy with your treatment you can:
- talk to your doctor to see if they can suggest changes,
- get an advocate to help you speak your doctor,
- ask for a second opinion if you feel it would help,
- contact Patient Advice and Liaison Service and see whether they can help, or
- make a complaint.
There is more information about these options below.
An advocate is independent from the NHS. They are free to use. They can be useful if you find it difficult to get your views heard.
There are different types of advocates available. Community advocates can support you to get a health professional to listen to your concerns. And help you to get the treatment that you would like. They arent available in all areas.
You can ask an advocate to help you make a complaint. Advocates that do this are called NHS complaints advocates. They are free to use and don t work for the NHS. They re available in all areas.
You can search online to search for a local advocacy service. If you cant find a service you can call our advice service 0808 801 0525 . You can email us too at . We will look for you.
Talk to your doctor about your treatment to see if you can resolve the problem with them first. If you dont agree with their decisions about diagnosis or treatment, you could ask for a second opinion. You are not legally entitled to a second opinion, but your doctor might agree to it if it would help with treatment options.
- Advocacy by clicking here.
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How Is Depression And Anxiety Treated
If you broke your leg, you wouldn’t just struggle on without help. You’d get in seen to. Mental health is as important as physical health and can be treated successfully. There are several treatments available often a combination of treatments is needed.
If your symptoms are mild, your GP may take a ‘wait and see’ approach. They may give you some advice on how to cope with symptoms then see if symptoms improve within a few weeks.
Theres something called ‘talking therapies’ now, which can really help people who are feeling low, anxious or out of sorts.
Talking treatments allow you to talk to a trained professional who can help you manage your thoughts and feelings and the effect they have on your mood and behaviour.
Examples of talking treatments include cognitive behavioural therapy and counselling. They may be one-on-one sessions or in a group environment.
If you are considering talking treatments, be sure to mention any cultural, language or religious needs you have or any hearing or sight problems, so they can be addressed when arranging therapy for you. Talking treatments are effective and available for free on the NHS.