depression & anxiety

  • Anxiety disorders are the most common mental illness in the U.S., affecting 40 million adults in the United States age 18 and older, or 18.1% of the population every year.

  • 264 million people worldwide live with depression.* Our World Data

  • In 2017, around 17.3 million adults age 18 or older in the U.S. had experienced at least one major depressive episode in the last year (6.7% of adults in the U.S.).* (National Institute of Mental Health)

  • Anxiety disorders are highly treatable, yet only 36.9% of those suffering receive treatment.

  • People with an anxiety disorder are three to five times more likely to go to the doctor and six times more likely to be hospitalized for psychiatric disorders than those who do not suffer from anxiety disorders.

  • Anxiety disorders develop from a complex set of risk factors, including genetics, brain chemistry, personality, and life events.

  • It's not uncommon for someone with an anxiety disorder to also suffer from depression or vice versa. Nearly one-half of those diagnosed with depression are also diagnosed with an anxiety disorder.

What is depression?

While we all feel sad, moody or low from time to time, some people experience these feelings intensely, for long periods of time (weeks, months or even years) and sometimes without any apparent reason. Depression is more than just a low mood – it's a serious condition that affects your physical and mental health.

What is anxiety?

Feeling anxious in certain situations can help us avoid danger, triggering our 'fight or flight' response. It is how we’ve evolved to keep ourselves safe. Sometimes though, we can become overly worried about perceived threats – bad things that may or may not happen. When your worries are persistent or out of proportion to the reality of the threat, and get in the way of you living your life, you may have an anxiety disorder.

Symptoms of Depression

Behaviour

  • Apathy - not wanting to do things / go out anymore - "can't be bothered"

  • struggling to focus at work/school

  • withdrawing from close family and friends

  • relying on alcohol and sedatives

  • unable to concentrate or remember things normally would 

Feelings

  • overwhelmed

  • guilty

  • irritable

  • frustrated

  • lacking in confidence

  • unhappy

  • indecisive

  • disappointed

  • miserable

  • sad

Thoughts

  • 'I’m a failure.'

  • 'It’s my fault.'

  • 'Nothing good ever happens to me.'

  • 'I’m worthless.'

  • 'Life’s not worth living.'

  • 'People would be better off without me.'

Physical

  • tired all the time

  • sick and run down

  • headaches and muscle pains

  • churning gut

  • sleep problems

  • loss or change of appetite

  • significant weight loss or gain

Symptoms of Anxiety

Psychological

  • excessive worry about the past, present or future

  • feeling apprehensive

  • feeling powerless

  • a sense of impending panic, danger or doom

  • mind racing, finding it hard to think

  • difficulty concentrating and remembering things

Feelings

  • excessive fear, worry, catastrophizing, or obsessive thinking

Physical

  • increased heart rate

  • breathing rapidly (hyperventilation) or shortness of breath

  • sweating

  • trembling

  • feeling tired or weak

  • dizziness

  • choking

  • dry mouth

  • stomach or chest pain

  • diarrhoea

  • blushing

  • muscle tension and headaches

  • difficulty sleeping and nightmares

  • hot and cold flushes

  • feeling tense, wound up and edgy

The above are just examples of possible symptoms. It is by no means an exhaustive list, nor does it mean you have to have 'all' of these. These are also representative of general depression and anxiety. There are a great deal of other mental illnesses not included above. Let's chat.

Thinking Man on Couch

heads up!

Over 6 million men suffer from depression per year in the USA, which often goes undiagnosed as they are more likely to report symptoms as fatigue, loss of interest in hobbies or work or irritability rather than identifying feelings of worthlessness or sadness. 

Let's work on that. 

Mini meditations

Deep breathing

Whether in your cubicle at work, at a family dinner, in your car, or waiting in line, you can try this technique anywhere. Even one deep breath lets your body know that you are turning off the “fight-or-flight” response and turning on the “rest-and-restore” system. Deep, relaxing breaths also take the edge off anxiety, slowing the heart rate and lowering blood pressure. (For tips, click here.) The decision to take a few deep breaths is a powerful way to help yourself get back in control. All the mini-meditations below will be more effective with deliberate breathing.

“Notice 5 Things” exercise. If you want to tune in to your surroundings, decide to notice five interesting things you can see, hear, feel, or smell. This simple exercise will enliven any routine activity, such as a walk, by inviting you to notice what is unique, new, or previously unseen. It’s literally an eye-opener.

Count to 10.

By counting or trying to recall the lyrics to your favourite son, your brain needs to shift focus directly to something else and can help you be more in the moment instead of 'flight'.