Depression and Anxiety

Depression and Anxiety

Anxiety and Depression often go hand-in-hand. The first step in treating depression is for you to recognize the signs. And procrastination and avoidance are leading indicators for diagnosing anxiety.

About Depression

The world can feel difficult and challenging, and sometimes it’s hard to manage even basic things like self-care. We all have our ups and downs – some days we’re on top of the world and other days we feel like there’s no hope left. But depression is something different: it doesn’t just go away after a few weeks or months. It can last for years, even decades. Left untreated, depression can lead to other health problems. Depression is a risk factor for suicide, which ranks as the 2nd leading cause of death among 15-to-34 year-olds. It’s also linked with some chronic medical conditions such as heart disease and diabetes. And if someone has anxiety, severe depression can make their symptoms worse.

While you may be able to mask your symptoms during day-to-day life with friends, family members, or co-workers, it is when you’re alone at home when the battle begins. Depression often goes hand in hand with anxiety: one without the other would be unimaginable because they feed off each other in such an unhealthy way.

People living with depression often experience a sense of hopelessness, worthlessness, and guilt. This can happen in any age group, but the symptoms are most common in adolescents and adults. Depression is more than just feeling sad: it’s an actual illness that needs to be treated by professionals. One of the main signs of depression is when you’re having thoughts about suicide. The most important thing you can do if you are struggling is to reach out for help before your thoughts turn into action.

The cause of depression can vary from person to person, but one of the leading causes is genetics. Some people may be born with a chemical imbalance in their brain and begin to experience symptoms during their childhood. 

Symptoms of Depression

The symptoms of depression are varied and can include things like loss of appetite or weight, insomnia, fatigue or lack of energy, feelings of worthlessness.

  • Sadness or hopelessness for longer than just a day or two
  • Feeling worthless or guilty
  • Lack of interest in pleasurable activities
  • Weight loss or weight gain (when not dieting)
  • Insomnia or oversleeping (trouble falling and staying asleep)
  • Anger
  • Relational conflict
  • Isolation, lack of motivation and energy

Depression can be caused by anxiety. Recent longitudinal epidemiological studies suggest that anxiety disorders usually precede the onset of depressive disorders and might be regarded as risk factors for secondary depressive disorders.

Depression can also be caused by a genetic predisposition with no other emotional or psychological triggers. In these cases, the person may not have any other symptoms but those tied to depression. It is important to understand that we all experience different moods and emotions in our lives: some days you will feel sad, but it will usually just be for a short brief before you get back on track.

One of the main signs of depression is when you’re having negative distorted thoughts with feelings of profound sadness. It can become a vicious cycle that’s hard to stop because the person doesn’t have the energy to fight it anymore.

However, there are many different treatments for depression – like psychotherapy, medication, and holistic approaches such as yoga, mindfulness, or acupuncture. The goal for these treatments is to help you regain control over your life and make meaningful changes in your life. 

Many people don’t realize that depression can affect the body, in addition to the mind. People with depression often have physical symptoms, such as pain and difficulties sleeping. This means that you might need to see a doctor for both your mental and physical health.

A big humanistic concern is if individuals with minimal education will seek and follow through with treatment. Depression is also viewed as something that should be discussed through a social lens within the entire health care system.  Occupational therapy programs are shown to help individuals not only deal with improving their physical challenges but assist with enhancing the patient’s mood. Another major problem is that depression is not being recognized early enough in order for diagnosis and treatment to occur.

Causes Depression & Anxiety

Academic pressure

One of the major causes of depression in children, adolescents, and young adults is Academic pressure. Depression is seen as a problem that occurs more in students who do not feel like they can handle the work or do not have the intellect to succeed. The difference between Depression and Anxiety is that Depressive thoughts will focus more on past events and Anxious thoughts are centered on the future. Genetics plays a significant role in developing mood and anxiety disorders. However, triggering events such as academic failures and pressure from family and friends will contribute to these disorders.

Seasonal Affective Disorder (SAD)

Seasonal Affective Disorder (SAD), normally occurs during the change of seasons with diminishing sunlight. There are numerous studies that link the absence of sunlight with increasing depressive symptoms. SAD symptoms can mimic a Major Depressive Disorder. Individuals should seed licensed clinicians and doctors to obtain the proper diagnosis. One of the primary symptoms of SAD and other depressive disorders is sleep disruptions. It is vitally important for individuals to obtain the proper sleep to assist in their treatment and recovery. 

Procrastination and avoidance are signs of Anxiety

Procrastination and avoidance are leading indicators for diagnosing Anxiety. You could replace the word anxiety with fear. Individuals that are anxious are fearful of something in the future. Licensed mental health professionals can help individuals to differentiate between normal fears and chronic Anxiety. 

Treatment for Depression

There are many types of therapy available. Cognitive Behavioral Therapy, Solution Focused Therapy, Acceptance Commitment Therapy and Behavioral Therapy are some of the main therapy approaches.

The goal of treatment is to improve your mood and eliminate or lessen your negative and self-destructive thoughts. Treatments can include therapy, medication, lifestyle changes (such as diet), herbal remedies, exercise, meditation, and yoga.

The first step in treating depression is for you to recognize the signs. These could be mental or physical signs such as chronic sadness, lack of interest in activities you used to enjoy, withdrawal from relationships, and constant negative thoughts. Once recognized these symptoms should be brought up to a counselor, therapist or doctor.


Anxiety and Depression often go hand-in-hand. If you can relate to anything on this blog post and are looking for help, let’s schedule a 15 min consult to see if I can help.

Robert Watts Counseling is located in Pennington NJ and offers safe in-office visit as well as online via Google Meet.

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