Many individuals who experience clinical anxiety also experience clinical depression. Research studies have demonstrated that anxiety disorders and depression are often “comorbid”—that is, they often occur together at the same time or at different times in a person’s life. In some cases, it seems that anxiety problems developed first. In other cases, depressive symptoms occurred first. Either way, both anxiety and depressive symptoms need to be identified and addressed for treatment to be the most beneficial.
“Clinical” depression is diagnosed when the individual experiences feelings of depression or sadness every day, or almost every day, for two weeks or longer. In most cases, depressive symptoms last considerably longer than two weeks. Other common symptoms of depression include changes in appetite, changes in sleep patterns (too much or too little), low energy, diminished enjoyment, and decreased interests in usual activities.
Cognitive therapy and cognitive-behavior therapy (CBT) are often the treatments of choice for mild to moderate depression. These treatment approaches are active, here-and-now methods that help the individual identify and modify negative and counterproductive thoughts, beliefs and thinking styles. These treatment methods also include a wide variety of behavioral strategies that help the depressed person increase enjoyable and constructive activities.
Other treatment approaches that may be appropriate for depression include couples therapy, family therapy, or psychodynamic psychotherapy.
When depression is more severe, antidepressant medication may be a necessary and helpful part of treatment. These medications can be prescribed and monitored by your primary physician or your psychiatrist. In most cases, psychotherapy will continue to be necessary even when medications are prescribed.
New visual arts and story-telling project by McLean Hospital and the International OCD Foundation
Our 2017 "1MillionSteps4OCD" Fundraiser & Walk were great successes! Click to read more.
Breathing and CO2 Biofeedback for Panic Disorder available through AATC.
AATC Book Review Blog
A list of the upcoming dates for Support Groups
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