The human experience is an amazing journey filled with moments that allow us to feel the highest of highs and the lowest of lows. No matter your gender, race, ethnicity, or age, you’ll experience many events that will trigger many emotions, such as happiness, surprise, anger, frustration, anxiety, and sadness.
Going through difficult times, such as death or a breakup, can produce feelings of anxiety and sadness. And even happy moments, such as landing a new job, can produce anxious feelings about fitting in, needing to move to a new city, or other related issues. For many people, after a time of adjustment, they’re able to reset and get back to feeling more like themselves again.
However, if you feel stuck in anxiety or sadness, you may benefit from treatment. The caring medical team at Generations Family Practice, in Cary, North Carolina, are experts in treating anxiety and depression. In this blog, our team shares insights on these conditions and guidance on when to seek professional help.
Anxiety and depression defined
A good place to start unpacking this complex topic is to define these conditions:
Depression is one of the most common mental health conditions. In fact, an estimated one out of every six adults experiences depression in their lifetime, and about 16 million American adults experience it every year. Although there’s no definitive cause of depression, research suggests that there’s a combination of factors that contribute to it, namely psychological, genetic, biological, and environmental factors.
Depression is typically characterized by a feeling of sadness or hopelessness that lingers over time. There’s no set timeframe that differentiates depression from bouts of the blues, though. Some people experience depression as two or more weeks of profound sadness, while other people experience chronic patterns of low moods that stretch for weeks or even years.
Anxiety is a response to a perceived threat that triggers feelings of stress, worry, or nervousness. Everyone has episodes of anxiety from time to time when there are disruptions in life. However, anxiety can become a problem if feelings of nervousness or worry persist and there are no concrete, identifiable situations for them to be based on.
Understanding when you may need help
People with anxiety or depression often wonder how they can tell when they should seek professional help. One of the best ways to figure that out is to ask yourself how well you’re functioning day to day.
If you find that anxiety or depression is driving your everyday life decisions, then it may be time to ask for help and call your doctor. You should be the driving force behind the life you lead, not your feelings of worry or sadness.
While family or friends may offer advice on seeking or not seeking help, you know yourself better than anyone else. Regardless of how long you’ve been experiencing your symptoms or how mild or intense they may be, if you just feel off and not yourself, you should listen to your feelings and seek help.
Treating anxiety and depression
First, we give you a thorough evaluation, which could include a review of your age, medical history, severity of your symptoms, and other factors. Depending on your results, we may recommend healthy lifestyle changes, counseling (talk therapy), prescription medication, or other treatments.
If you feel anxious or depressed, we can help. To learn more, call 919-752-3714 or book an appointment online with Generations Family Practice today.