Been feeling a little down lately? Having trouble concentrating or sleeping? It could just be a phase, but there is also the chance that it could be depression. Depression is more common than most think. Each year an estimated 20 million Americans have a period of clinical depression.
|Depression is a condition characterized by low mood, change in appetite, loss of interest in once enjoyable activities, fear of failure and decreased sex drive. Lack of energy, difficulty concentrating and suicidal thoughts are also characterized by depression.|
To help provide information about the condition and how to cope, Tuttleman Counseling Services set up a booth last Thursday in the main lobby of Tuttleman. Counselors on the fourth floor had students fill out surveys as they spoke one-on-one with the students to see if depression symptoms were present. If so, they recommended a visit to Counseling Services.
It is important to speak with a counselor about depression to make an accurate diagnosis, as depression can be tricky to recognize.
Depression is a condition characterized by low mood, change in appetite, loss of interest in once enjoyable activities, fear of failure and decreased sex drive. Lack of energy, difficulty concentrating and suicidal thoughts are also characterized by depression. Five or more of these symptoms should be present for at least two weeks before a person can be diagnosed as depressed.
Just because some of these symptoms may apply to you does not necessarily mean you are clinically depressed. That is why you should visit a doctor for a proper diagnosis.
Depression can be genetic or caused by aversive early life experiences. Sometimes an imbalance, such as a decreased amount of a chemical called seratonin in the brain, can cause the condition. Personality factors, such as how you deal with stress, can also bring on depression.
Stress associated with the start of a new school year and last month’s tragedies has kept Tuttleman Counseling Services very busy lately.
Dr. John DiMino, Ph.D, says his office has encountered two to three times the normal amount of walk-ins in the past month. Peak time for Counseling Services runs throughout most of fall and spring semesters.
Another counseling option for Temple students is the Bradley Counseling Psychology Clinic located on the third floor of Weiss Hall. The center differs from Tuttleman Counseling in a few ways. It not only serves Temple, but also the surrounding areas and operates on a sliding scale fee. The center addresses a variety of issues including depression, anxiety and career counseling.
Director Marcy Chessler said that most people who come in do not diagnose themselves first as being depressed. However, based on symptoms, counselors can diagnose the problem as anxiety or depression.
“Some of the resources found on the Internet about depression are good, but it’s important to come and speak to a therapist. Symptoms could be characteristic of another condition,” said Chessler.
With one out of every six Americans diagnosed with depression during their lives, it’s very important to know how to detect depression symptoms early on and get help for it.