Need help breaking free from addiction?
1-888-993-3112
Call 24/7 for treatment options. Who Answers?

Am I Depressed Or What?

Question:

I am a 26 year old female. I am successful in my career with just finishing up a master’s degree and consider myself very smart. My problem is this….I am so unhappy that many days and nights I spend the time just sitting in front of the TV crying for no reason. Things and people that once made me happy and smile do nothing for me anymore. I have constant feelings of not being happy and feeling sad. I am married but no longer feel happy in my marriage that I once loved. My husband and family are concerned for me because this is not me. I was once happy and enjoyed being with people and doing things, now I am just sad and want to spend all my time alone. It is starting to effect me. At first I didn’t think anything of it but now I am starting to get worried about myself. I can’t stand these feelings of sadness anymore. Do I need medication or counseling?

This Disclaimer applies to the Answer Below
  • Dr. Schwartz responds to questions about psychotherapy and mental health problems, from the perspective of his training in clinical psychology.
  • Dr. Schwartz intends his responses to provide general educational information to the readership of this website; answers should not be understood to be specific advice intended for any particular individual(s).
  • Questions submitted to this column are not guaranteed to receive responses.
  • No correspondence takes place.
  • No ongoing relationship of any sort (including but not limited to any form of professional relationship) is implied or offered by Dr. Schwartz to people submitting questions.
  • Dr. Schwartz, Mental Help Net and CenterSite, LLC make no warranties, express or implied, about the information presented in this column. Dr. Schwartz and Mental Help Net disclaim any and all merchantability or warranty of fitness for a particular purpose or liability in connection with the use or misuse of this service.
  • Always consult with your psychotherapist, physician, or psychiatrist first before changing any aspect of your treatment regimen. Do not stop your medication or change the dose of your medication without first consulting with your physician.
Answer:

<

p>It is very clear that you are experiencing depression. The constant feelings of unhappiness, tearfulness, lack of joy in things that used to make you happy are all strong symptoms of depression. Your husband and family are aware that something about you is different. The answer to your question is an unequivocal yes; you are in need of both medication and counseling.

<

p>Symptoms of Depression:

<

p>There are many symptoms of depression. It is not necessary to have every symptom to carry the diagnosis of depression. Among the many symptoms some of the best known are:

<

p>1. Difficulty falling or staying asleep.

<

p>2. Sleeping well beyond the normal seven to eight hours per night. Some people want to sleep the entire day when they are depressed.

<

p>3. A significant change in appetite. Some people lose their appetite while others experience an increase in hunger and caloric intake. 4. A decrease in sexual feelings and a loss of interest in sexual relations.

<

p>4. Inability to concentrate on work or school.

<

p>5. An increase in forgetfulness as a result of not being able to concentrate.

<

p>6. Suicidal thinking with or without a plan to make an attempt on your life.

<

p>7. A serious increase in irritability and temper. This is accompanied by angry outbursts and feelings of intolerance towards others.

<

p>8. Many people experience somatic symptoms such as pain in their back, neck, legs, chest or elsewhere.

<

p>Why Do You Need Both Medication and Counseling?

<

p>Research shows that depression is best treated with a combination of medication and psychotherapy. I would recommend cognitive-behavioral psychotherapy to help you identify the automatic thoughts that are causing you to feel so unhappy. Yes, we are able to think our way into depression and we can learn how to think our way out of it as well. While medication is quite helpful and necessary to the treatment of depression the psychotherapy helps people learn how to avoid repeat episodes of these painful feelings.

<

p>Why Is This Depression Happening to Me Now?

<

p>There are some very key times in life when people can experience depression. In your case, you are finishing your Master’s Degree. Completing a graduate degree is a transitional point in the lives of most people. It can create feelings of confusion and worry about how to proceed from this point onward.

<

p>In addition, at age 26 there are many other issues that could possibly on your mind, such as, concern about your relationship with your husband, trying to decide whether its time to plan children or decide if you want children or worrying about illness in the family. It is difficult to know what types of stresses you are experiencing at this time. However, depression is usually an indicator that a person is facing or expecting to face some crisis in the near future. It is also an indicator that unpleasant memories about past traumas may be lurking in the back ground.

<

p>It is definitely in your best interests to seek help as soon as possible.

More "Ask Dr. Schwartz" View Columnists

Close

Call the Helpline Toll-FREE

To Get Treatment Options Now.

1-888-993-3112 Who Answers? 100% Confidential

Get Help For You or a Loved One Here...

Click Here for More Info.

Close

Call The Toll-FREE Helpline 24/7 To Get Treatment Options Now.

100% Confidential
Get Treatment Options From Your Phone... Tap to Expand