Sruggling With...
Depression Counselling


Feeling low, sad or unhappy is a normal part of everyday life. We all have low moods occasionally. Very often these feelings are a reaction to the set backs and struggles of living. However, when our feelings turn to despair and we experience life as bleak and a constant struggle we may be experiencing depression.

Someone with depression may feel miserable and negative for much of the time. Often they lack motivation and find everything an effort. There may be changes in appetite and sleeping patterns. Doctors look at the following symptoms when diagnosing depression:


  • Appetite changes; loss of appetite or overeating
  • Sleeping difficulties: broken sleep or over-sleeping
  • Feelings of guilt and worthlessness
  • Tiredness and lethargy
  • Lack of motivation
  • Difficulties in concentrating
  • Loss of pleasure
  • Headaches, stomach upsets or chronic pain
  • Thoughts of death or suicide

Types of depression include:

  • Bipolar disorder (manic depression)
  • Postnatal depression
  • Seasonal Affective Disorder (SAD)


Depression is a complex condition and there are many different causes:

Physical causes

Serious illness such as heart disease or cancer, chemical imbalances in the body, thyroid disorder,

Trauma and stress

Financial problems, relationship breakdown, the death of someone close, life transitions-redundancy, house move, new job.

Personality type

Some people are more prone to depression- those with low self-esteem and a negative outlook. Or this could be a learnt response from childhood.


Anxiety disorder, eating disorders, alcohol and drug abuse are often factors of depression.

Seeking help

If your depression has lasted a number of weeks and the symptoms listed above are causing concern it may be advisable to consult your doctor for help and support. He/she may give you a physical examination and may recommend tests to rule out other medical conditions. You may be prescribed medication and your doctor might also recommend counselling support.

Counselling support

Counselling can be an effective alternative to medication or it may be used alongside medication. Counselling can provide a supportive, non-judgemental and warm space where you can talk about your concerns. As we have seen there are many different causes of depression and a trained counsellor will encourage you to unburden yourself and possibly see things from a different, more positive perspective. You may also learn new more effective ways of coping.

How counselling may help:

  • Help people understand the triggers to depression
  • Help support people when difficult feelings emerge
  • Examine negative thoughts and help people think about their problems in a new and more empowering way
  • Look at new ways of coping
  • Look at the effects of lifestyle and how to implement changes
  • Teach relaxation skills

Exercise is increasingly recommended for depression and talking to friends and family can also help. GP’s can refer patients for psychiatric help in more severe cases.

Content written by Karen Dyer MBACP in 2010. The content is for general information only and may or may not relate to your individual situation. Lakeside Counselling Weston Super Mare

If you’d like to talk to someone please call on: 01934 415414

If you need someone to share your problems with, I’m here to help: 01934 415414

Member of the British Association of Counselling & Phschotherapy