2020 has been a hard year and for many people, isolation and depression resulting from quarantine have become significant mental health issues. While some people experience isolation in their usual day to day lives, many of us have had isolation thrust upon us as a result of the current pandemic. With rules and regulations limiting our contact with others, venues where we would usually go to socialize closed, and our ability to travel severely compromised, it’s unsurprising that our mental health is beginning to suffer.
Loneliness, isolation, and depression have been shown to increase our body’s cortisol levels. Cortisol is known as the stress hormone, since production naturally elevates when we are under pressure. Persistently high cortisol levels can affect our general health and have been linked to chronic health problems such as diabetes, high blood pressure, heart disease, obesity, and some forms of cancer. Getting depression under control is essential to stop it from taking a toll on your physical and mental wellbeing. One of the best ways to do this is to consider undergoing therapy for depression and isolation.
Isolation isn’t just physically being alone, which is something also known as solitude. Physical isolation occurs when you aren’t around other people, such as when you live and/or work alone, and is the most obvious reason for someone to experience loneliness.
Nevertheless, it is possible to be surrounded by other people and still feel completely alone. This is known as emotional isolation and occurs when someone feels unable or is unwilling to talk to people around them about how they feel. This can be for a number of reasons, such as not feeling close enough to people to be able to trust them with what you want to talk to them about, feeling as though you are being judged, or simply not wanting to burden them with your own worries and concerns.
Despite greater awareness surrounding mental health issues than ever before, many people still think that depression is simply having a low mood or feeling sad all the time. The truth is that depression is much more complex and can present with some surprising symptoms. These include:
sleep problems, such as difficulty falling or staying asleep
sleeping too much, or using sleep to eat up hours in the day
losing interest in activities that previously interested you
actively avoiding social engagements or talking to people you know
finding it hard to feel positive about the future
feeling irritable or suffer from mood swings
eating a lot less or a lot more than normal, causing your weight to fluctuate
experiencing anxiety attacks
feeling tired all the time
If you are experiencing any of these symptoms, it could be that you are suffering from depression and would benefit from treatment to help you to cope.
Most people who experience mental health issues are recommended to try therapy shortly after their diagnosis. This is because talk therapies, facilitated by licensed and experienced professionals, are known to be one of the most effective ways of helping to tackle many mental health issues, including isolation and depression.
There are various different types of therapy recommended to try depending on what your therapist feels will be most beneficial. For isolation and depression, patients are usually referred to one of three core varieties of therapy. These are:
Cognitive Behaviour Therapy (CBT): This evaluates your existing patterns of behavior and finds ways of changing them in order to improve your mindset and emotional wellbeing.
Interpersonal Therapy (IPT): this type of therapy looks at identifying issues that could be affecting your interpersonal relationships and plans to overcome these issues.
Group Therapy: particularly valuable for patients who are physically or emotionally isolated, group therapy brings together people who are experiencing the same types of issues, creating a support network that they can use to talk to, and learn from one another.
There is a range of benefits associated with therapy for depression and isolation. These include:
Therapy gives you an opportunity to talk to an impartial and unbiased person about your problems, who will listen without judgment and in confidence.
Therapy can give you a new perspective on your problems which can make them easier to deal with.
Group therapy gives you the opportunity to forge connections with real people who are experiencing similar issues to you, helping to eliminate some of the isolation that you have been experiencing.
Therapy can often be used instead of antidepressant medications, or in addition to medications.
Therapy can help to alleviate stress and its physical effects.
Therapy sessions are tailored to the specific needs of each individual patient.
If you would like to find out more about therapy for depression and isolation, please call stronger together (858) 434-8100 today.