The first step to overcoming depression is to first understand what depression is and how it works. Depression effects somewhere around 15 million Americans per year and it comes in various forms. From seasonal affective disorder and major depressive disorder to bipolar and dysthymia, depression is an illness that afflicts people worldwide at an increasing rate. Depression can hinder a person’s motivation, concentration, and various other aspects of daily life. It’s a very complex disorder that can disrupt sleep, affect the immune system, and¬†interfere with appetite causing either weight gain or weight loss depending on the individual. If you’re suffering from symptoms of depression, you should consider seeking out a Lowell counselor.

Depression is more than just an occasional blue mood that passes in time. It’s a persistent state of mind that cannot be merely wished away. People who suffer from a depressive disorder cannot simply overcome their feelings of their own will power, but with treatment and therapy, it can be cured. Depression is an elusive illness, and there is no single known cause of it. It’s likely that a combination of biochemical, genetic, psychological, and environmental factors all contribute to depression. Research using brain-imaging technologies such as MRI’s have shown that brains of people who suffer from depression actually look different than those of people who are not depressed. The areas of the brain that are responsible for regulating thinking, sleep, mood, appetite, and behavior all appear to function abnormally. In addition to this discovery, the chemicals that brain cells use to communicate known as neurotransmitters appear to be out of balance in the brains of those with depression.

Although depression can seem impossible to overcome at times, it is actually highly treatable. Several studies have shown that the most effective treatment for depression is cognitive behavioral therapy. This type of therapy seeks to change problematic thought patterns, and can be performed with or without the use of antidepressant drugs. To explore the various treatment options available, contact a Lowell therapist today.