Thinking about getting help for depression?
The time is now!
Did you know that about 8% of adults will experience depression at some point in their lives?
What exactly is depression?
Everyone goes through periods of unhappiness and we all throw around the word “depressed”, but what does it truly mean to be depressed?
Each person is different and may not experience the same symptoms, but some symptoms of depression to watch out for include:
- Feelings of hopelessness
- Detachment from your life and those around you
- Feeling tired
- Crying for no reason
- Not being able to concentrate
- Thoughts of suicide
- Loss of appetite
- Change in sleep patterns
- Upset stomach
If you or someone you know is experiencing these symptoms or may be suffering from depression it is important to get help. Pulse On Call doctors, mental health professionals, or your family doctor are great options to discuss depression.
What causes depression?
Each person is unique and will have different factors that contribute to their depression. Some causes may include:
- Genetic predisposition for depression
- Hormonal changes such as after giving birth to a child or during menopause
- Seasonal changes—some people experience Seasonal Affective Disorder (SAD), usually in the winter when there is less sunlight
- External factors—death or illness of someone they are close to, difficulties at work or in relationships, low self-esteem, financial difficulties, addictions
If you or someone you know is suffering from depression here are some tips that can help:
- Depression is an illness and blaming someone for their depression doesn’t help
- Listen to the person who is depressed talk about their feelings and reassure them that it is alright to talk about feelings of depression
- If the person with depression is comfortable, try involving other friends and family members to provide more support
- Talk to a doctor about depression; if your friend or family member is depressed offer to join them when talking to a doctor
How do I know if I have depression?
Talking to a healthcare provider can help determine if you have depression.
They may do some tests to confirm your diagnosis. These may include:
- Physical exam—depression can sometimes be caused by underlying health issues which is why your doctor will want to discuss your overall health
- Blood tests—can help your doctor identify any abnormalities and check if your thyroid is functioning properly
- Questionnaires—your doctor may ask you about your thoughts, feelings, symptoms or behaviour patterns; sometimes your doctor will give you a questionnaire that will help them understand your symptoms and provide a diagnosis
I think I have depression—what now?
If you or someone you know are experiencing the symptoms of depression listed above on a regular basis it is important to get help. Contact your doctor, mental health professional or Pulse On Call to discuss your symptoms with a healthcare provider.
Treatment can make a big difference for people suffering from depression allowing them to return to their regular activities.
Can you treat depression?
Yes! There are many different options for treating depression and your doctor will help you pick something that is right for you.
Some common treatment options include:
- Therapy: This treatment option aims to help treat depression by talking about your struggles with a mental health professional. There are many types of therapy including cognitive behavioural therapy or interpersonal therapy. Most people think of therapy as face-to-face with a doctor, but there are many options for therapy such as online sessions, videos, or workbooks.
- Antidepressant medication: There are many different types of antidepressant medication available and your doctor can help decide what might be right for you. Sometimes you might have to try different medications or even a combination of medication to find something that works..
- Hospital stay: For some people with severe depression the best option is psychiatric treatment at a hospital. This might be the case if you are unable to take care of yourself or are in danger of harming yourself or others.
Can someone at Pulse On Call help me?
Of course! Schedule an online doctors appointment and one of our team members will be happy to help. Our licensed Canadian physicians can help diagnose and can also provide prescriptions online.
If referral to a specialist is required, our team can help find a local specialist to help.
The best part? You can do it from the comfort of your own home and it’s free if you have OHIP coverage!
Please note that all information within this posting is up-to-date at the time of publication.