Transformation Behavioral Health

Learning ‚Äč

What is depression? When does it become a depressive disorder?

Life is hard, and the trials and tribulations we experience can leave us to feel appropriately "sad," "down," or outright "depressed." These emotions, although unpleasant, are a part of living. As such, it can be difficult to discern when it is time to get help. Rest assured, there is not right or wrong time. Disorder or no disorder, therapy can help you cope with your life situation. However, people with depressive disorders experience hopelessness and sadness that has significant impact on the way they live their life. 

Major Depressive Disorder:  People with major depressive disorder (MDD) not only feel depressed or hopeless, but experience a gamut of other symptoms as well. Many people will experience a change in their sleeping habits. For example, they may have difficulty falling asleep or staying asleep, or they may be sleeping significantly more than normal. They often notice changes in their appetite, and may find themselves eating more or less than what is typical for themselves. People with MDD no longer find enjoyment in activities that they used to, and that may include no longer enjoying being around family, hanging out with friends, or playing games that they used to find fun. People often feel that their energy is low, and may feel too tired to function normally at work. At work they often have difficulty concentrating on tasks, and notice themselves moving through their day at a much slower pace. 

Some people with MDD experience even more severe symptoms. Some people are so depressed that they no longer want to live. They think that their lives are useless and that people close to them would be better off if they were dead. They often believe that nobody would miss them. These people have suicidal ideation. If you or somebody you know is in immediate danger of suicide or harming themselves (or other people), it is considered a medical emergency that warrants presentation to the nearest emergency department. 

How can we treat your depression?

In therapy, we will use solution-focused therapies, such as Cognitive Behavioral Therapy (CBT), or Dialectical Behavioral Therapy (DBT), to help you develop and practice skills and techniques that you can use to recover and get your life back.  We will help you learn to recognize destructive thought patterns and how they impact you.  We will then work on challenging and changing those thoughts to improve your mood and start feeling better. Learning and practicing mindfulness is also a key component to treatment for depression.  You will learn ways to make mindfulness a daily practice.

Cognitive Behavioral Therapy is recognized as the gold standard for treating depression.  Call or text us at 815-575-9675, or email to learn more about how we can help you.