Find the Right Psychologist for You
Looking for a psychologist to offer anxiety treatment or help with your depression?
When you contact us, we will help you choose the best match for your situation from our psychologists and mental health qualified counsellors.
We are open daytime and after hours, Monday to Saturday, including evenings.
See our full range of counselling services:
- Marriage / Couples Counselling
- Psychologist Services
- Child / Family Counselling
- Adolescent / Family Counselling
- Teens / Youth Counselling
- Women’s Issues
- Anxiety / Depression
- Trauma / Grief Counselling
- Abuse Counselling
- Counselling for Christians
- Clinical / Ministry Supervision
- Skype Counselling
Anxiety and depression
Some of the most common mental health issues are depression and anxiety.
It is reported that every year, about 3 million Australians will struggle with symptoms related to depression and anxiety (Australian Bureau of Statistics, 2008). This means that just over 10% of the population will struggle with these conditions sometime this year.
Some of these people will seek help for their symptoms so they can resume a higher quality of life. There are different types of depression and anxiety disorders and each condition has some different strategies of how to support the healing journey for each individual.
Both depression and anxiety can have foundations in individual traits of a person, and also can be affected by situational aspects of person’s life. Situational aspects might be external stressors such as: a change in circumstance, loss of someone or something, loss of a job, or a health condition.
When people experience change, or they experience trauma, their physiology and psychology can be altered. This is often to do with chemicals and hormones within the body trying to respond to the unusual or unexpected events that life sometimes throws our way.
Symptoms of anxiety and depression
The symptoms that people get when this occurs can really feel debilitating and can lead to some really negative thoughts about one’s longevity in life.
Some people can develop an adjustment disorder at this time which leads to a lot of potential negative symptoms such as; depressed mood or anxious mood, worry, panic, sadness, grief, sleep difficulty, hopelessness, changes in self-esteem, poor concentration and reduced performance at work or school.
Usually with help from counsellors of psychologists, people who experience these symptoms can find relief and learn to adjust to their circumstances in a more positive way. Some people report over time that their symptoms reduce to the point that they no longer require professional support and their symptoms have almost completely disappeared.
Normal anxiety versus extended anxiety
It is important to acknowledge that sadness and anxiety are natural responses to stressors and situations that one faces in life. We all can feel sad from time to time, and we can all feel worried or frightened. This is normal.
For some people however, depression or anxiety symptoms may be a little longer term in nature, and these people seek support from professionals for a longer period of time.
Diagnosis of a depression disorder or an anxiety disorder is only done after the symptoms are felt for a particular duration of time, or when the symptoms are so intense that they pose a threat to a person’s quality of life or their ability to function.
Treatment for anxiety and depression
The goals for these people are similar to those coping with stressful changes in their life and include: education about their conditions, help to understand their symptoms, learning new ways to see and understand themselves and their life, and developing ways to improve their coping skills and their life in general.
For some this will include getting a referral and seeing a psychiatrist or a paediatrician to consult with them about biological foundations of their condition and possible medication treatments that will enhance their mood.
How to know if you have depression
Depression disorder are characterised by:
- Markedly reduced mood or increased irritability for most of the day
- Changes in appetite or weight
- Changes in sleep patterns
- Changes in physical activity
- Diminished ability to concentrate
- Increased hopelessness
- Suicide thoughts or attempts.
If you experience any of the above symptoms or notice that there are changes in you behaviours due to your mood, then it may be time to seek advice and support, you can either discuss these concerns with your GP or phone Bridges Counselling for a free 15-minute consultation.
How to know if you have anxiety
Anxiety Disorders are characterised by:
- Fear of a possible negative event in the future
- Physiological responses to that fear
- Behaviours associated to an attempt to escape that feared event.
Common anxiety disorders
Like Depression disorders, there are a number of different anxiety disorders and they present themselves very differently. Some common Anxiety disorders include:
- A specific Phobia- such as being scared of a certain animal or an impending storm etc.
- Generalised Anxiety Disorder – where symptoms are more generalised to everyday life rather than a specific condition, this disorder is often related to the idea of having a lot of worry.
- Panic Disorder – where one may have many panic attacks and their fear becomes linked to the idea of having another panic attack, anxiety attack.
- Social anxiety disorder – being worried about being in social settings, having social phobia and possibly avoiding these worrying situations.
- Obsessive Compulsive Disorder – typically characterised by compulsive actions or behaviours that are done to avoid or reduce the impact of a perceived threat, these may be repetitive in nature such as checking, washing or tapping.
- Post Traumatic Stress Disorder – An anxiety disorder related to experiencing a trauma of some sort, this can lead to some debilitating symptoms of anxiety such as panic attacks, depersonalisation, derealisation. Wanting to avoid situations which remind you of the trauma due to the uncomfortable feelings it brings up.
Anxiety and depression often co-exist
Often here can be an overlap in these conditions as well, some people with depression can begin to feel worried about their future, or start to develop avoidance of certain situations, which can in turn create an anxious reaction with faced with that situation.
Someone who experiences anxiety or panic for long enough will begin to feel helpless and hopeless about their future which can lead to a sense of sadness or depression.
Counselling for anxiety and depression
Having someone who can help you understand why you are responding to situations the way you are and figuring out how to change your responses, or improve your quality of life is very helpful.
For both depression and anxiety, counselling aims to develop a plan to approach life and begin to do the things that you may have done in the past, but stopped doing because it felt overwhelming to try: building social connections and increasing every day activity for example may feel overwhelming, but when someone re-engages with activities in their life, they can gain success and this can improve their quality of life and inadvertently improve their quality of life.
Our therapists can help with your journey and goals to re-engage with the life you once had. We can go at your pace and can help you to find that peace and joy that you once had. We can support you to make goals and help you to carry out those goals in a way that ensures success as you maintain your progress over time.
Some common anxiety treatments or treatment for depression include:
- Cognitive Behavioural Therapy (CBT)
- Narrative Therapy
- Acceptance and Commitment Therapy (ACT)
- Emotion Focussed Therapy (EFT)
Are there any question we have not answered? Please call us today for your free 15 minute phone consultation.