How to Survive a Depression
An individual may at times experiences a sense of feeling down which can be a form of depression, especially if it lasts for an extended period of time. If this mood is atypical, it may reflect an extreme reaction to everyday problems, during a particularly difficult crisis in a person’s life.
The causes of depression are complex and vary. They could be attributable to recent stressful events, unresolved past experiences, and even biology. At the very least, knowing the context of the depression is helpful in understanding the landscape of a person’s pain.
We all feel anxious from time to time. We all experience emotions that plague us until we become pro-active. We sometimes place excessive dependence on food, work, sex, drugs or alcohol to alter our sorrow.
However, when these disruptions cause relentless painful feelings, there is an inability to function as productive individuals. We come to feel empty and lethargic.
Diverse viewpoints define depression differently: medical science classifies it as an illness, while other approaches view it as a state of mind, or as a condition embracing psychological, social and physiological components. Regardless of the viewpoint, a major depressive episode is recognizable by at least four of the following signs.
1. Feelings of intense or persistent sadness
2. Increased need for sleep or difficulty sleeping
3. Increase or decrease in appetite
4. Uncontrollable or spontaneous crying
5. Feelings of hopelessness or helplessness
6. Feelings of worthlessness
7. Loss of pleasure from things that were naturally enjoyable
8. Difficulty focusing
9. More irritable moods
10. Decrease in energy – both physical and emotional
How we think has a great impact on how we feel and of course on our behavior as well. Therefore, our thinking guides our thoughts which in turn effects the degree of our depression. As simple as that sounds, depression can alter the individual’s ability to find a balance between positive and negative thoughts.

Psychotherapy provides a supportive environment where the individual can learn how to manage symptoms, identify true and reasonable alternative thoughts, and understand the factors causing the depression. A mental-health professional who practices Cognitive-Behavioral Therapy (CBT) can detect even the most subtle evidence of negative thoughts. Skillful treatment will lead to the alleviation of symptoms, and can include correcting chemicals in the brain that control severe mood swings.

Author's Bio: 

Rita Bigel-Casher, LCSW, PhD is a is a licensed psychotherapist, Marriage & Family Therapist who has worked with Individuals, Couples, and Groups for over 25 years in her own practice in New York City, on the phone and SKYPE. She is an expert in Relationship Therapy, Hypnosis and EMDR Trauma/Loss Therapy. Her orientation is in the Body/Mind dynamic and Self-Relational Solution-Focus which is a camera lens through which the work of understanding and healing can occur.
Dr. Bigel-Casher is a coach for better living, and utilizes a wide range of healing models personally tailored to meet the needs of any given client. She has had advanced training in a number of therapeutic modalities, including Cognitive-Behavioral, Psychodynamic, EMDR (Eye Movement Desensitization & Reprocessing,) SE (Somatic Experiencing,) MBSR Meditation (Mindfulness Based Stress Reduction,) Writing from the Heart, Ericksonian Hypnosis and Hypnotherapy, EFT (Emotionally Focused Couple,) Sex Therapy, and Biofeedback.
State licensure: LCSW Clinical Social Work. PhD Industrial Psychology. Membership: American Red Cross Mental Health Disaster Team (ARC/GNY), American Association for Marriage and Family Therapy (AAMFT), New York Milton H. Erickson Society for Psychotherapy and Hypnosis (NYSEPH), EMDRIA International Society, National Association of Social Workers (NASW) and The Author's Guild. Dr. Bigel-Casher has taught at Hunter College School of Social Work, The Postgraduate Center for Mental Health and was Director of the in-house treatment for family violence at Scarsdale Family Counseling Service.
Dr. Rita has appeared on CNN and OPRAH and other TV shows. Her work has been discussed on Fox News, Eyewitness News, the New York Times, Newsday, Bride’s Magazine, Cosmopolitan, and Mademoiselle to name but a few.