Do I have symptoms of anxiety or depression? Empower Counseling can help.
Anxiety and depression have differing symptoms for the most part but there are some symptoms they both share.
Do i have anxiety?
Anxiety typically involves nervousness, worry or dread. That can look like always waiting for” the other shoe to drop” or waiting for the next bad thing to happen. Anxiety can feel like always being overwhelmed or going from calm to overwhelmed in split second. It can feel like life is out of control.
There are several types of anxiety disorders, each with their own symptoms. An individual could have just one form of anxiety or multiple forms at the same time.
Generalized anxiety disorder is a common form of anxiety (inset statistics here). Generalized anxiety looks like always having something to worry about.
Social anxiety disorder is worrying excessively when you are around other people.
Panic disorder can cause sudden and extreme feelings of fear. Panic disorder is accompanied by physical symptoms like a tightness or heaviness in chest, heart racing, sweating, and other uncomfortable symptoms.
OCD or obsessive compulsive disorder involves having a pattern of thoughts based on fears that contribute to or cause repeated behaviors.
Phobias are strong, intense fears about particular things like enclosed spaces or heights.
PTSD, post traumatic stress disorder, may look like anxiety but it is not. It usually happens due to a trauma, as the name would imply. PTSD looks like flashbacks, panic, or extremely anxious reactions to a particular trigger or memory.
do i have depression?
Depression is different from anxiety, and can actually be brought on by untreated anxiety.
Some common symptoms of depression are:
Sadness or hopelessness. When you have a thought about doing something, the next thought you have might be something like, “What’s the point” or “I don’t feel like it”. You just can’t find a reason to do anything.
Loss in interest in the things you used to enjoy. Maybe you used to meet friends at the gym to play basketball but it just doesn’t seem fun anymore. Or maybe you like to meet your best friends for coffee or a walk and you just cannot get motivated to do so anymore. Depression tends to make you want to isolate.
Lack of energy. You literally don’t feel like you cannot do anything but stay in bed.
Sleeping too much, or not sleeping enough. Often with depression, sleep is an escape, a way to stop feeling the discomfort you feel.
Trouble concentrating. Brain fog often accompanies depression.
For a diagnosis of depression, at least some of these symptoms will be present almost every day for most off the day for 2 weeks or longer.
How does (untreated) anxiety lead to depression?
Having anxiety is very uncomfortable. It makes everything more difficult and can rob you of the energy for all of the things you have going on in your life. Anxiety tells us to avoid whatever it is that makes us anxious. This is a natural, yet very unhelpful, response. Anxiety persuades us to stay in our comfort zones. After avoiding long enough, we become scared to do much of anything. That is when depression steps in. After avoiding things that we want to do but don’t feel like we can do, we lose faith in ourselves and our abilities, and that is depressing. That is when we might say, “What’s the point?”.
do i have anxiety and depression? What helps anxiety and depression?
Empower Counseling provides Acceptance Commitment Therapy, which is a scientifically proven effective treatment for anxiety and depression. Our ACT trained counselors, Kathryn, Adam, and Kristine can help you discover the thoughts that have led to your anxiety. It is your thoughts that leas to your behaviors, or you avoidance. We use mindfulness and self-acceptance techniques to move away from these anxious thoughts and toward higher self-esteem and self-confidence. This higher self-esteem helps you in the behavioral part of ACT. Instead of avoiding, you will begin taking small behavioral steps outside of your comfort zone to prove to yourself that you can do the difficult or scary things you have been avoiding. It is in taking these actions that your self-confidence increases the most.
Medication can help also. Medication is not a solution to anxiety and depression. It treats the symptoms but not the root of the problem. But at times, if anxiety or depression has a tight grip, medication can help you get a place where it is easier to take the actions necessary. Our counselors are not here to tell you that you should or shouldn’t take medication. But we will let you know if medication might be helpful in moving toward the life that you want.
Empower Counseling specializes in ACT for anxiety counseling and depression counseling in person at our Birmingham area counseling clinic or online anywhere in the state of Alabama. We offer counseling for teens, therapy for college students, young adult counseling, and counseling for professionals. Adam Elliott, certified addiction specialist, also offers addiction counseling as well.
if you have anxiety or depression, It is easy to get started with one of our anxiety and depression specialists at Empower Counseling.
- Click here to go to the Home Page of our website.
- Scroll to bottom of the page.
- Send a message to us via the contact area.
- We will reach out ASAP and get you sent up with an appointment.