Anxiety and Depression Counselling

Are you suffering from depression or anxiety?

  • Are you experiencing prolonged anxiety or sadness?
  • Are you struggling to cope with changes in your life?
  • Are you constantly worrying about the future?
  • Are you caught in negative thought patterns?
  • Are you struggling to overcome social anxiety or phobia?

Our psychologists have extensive expertise in mental health counselling with anxiety and depression.

When you contact us, we will help you choose the best match for your situation from our team.

For your convenience, we are open daytime and after hours, Monday to Saturday, including evenings. We can also be contacted on (02) 9683 1444.

Anxiety and depression are amongst the most common mental health issues

About 3 million Australians will struggle with symptoms related to depression and anxiety every year (Australian Bureau of Statistics, 2008). This means that over 10% of the population will struggle with these conditions sometime this year.

There are different types of depression and anxiety disorders. Different strategies are available to support individuals on their healing journey.

Symptoms of anxiety and depression can feel debilitating and can lead to some negative thoughts about one’s longevity in life.

Some people find it difficult to adjust to big changes in life, which can lead to symptoms of anxiety and depression.

Both depression and anxiety can have foundations in individual traits of a person. They can be affected by situational aspects of a person’s life.

Situational aspects might be external stressors that lead to depression and anxiety. Some examples are: a change in circumstance, loss of someone or something, loss of a job, or a health condition. Responses such as sadness, confusion, anger or hopelessness can result in a person feeling depressed or anxious.

How to know if you have depression or anxiety

Depression disorders are characterised by:
  • Markedly reduced mood or increased irritability for most of the day
  • Changes in appetite or weight
  • Changes in sleep patterns
  • Changes in physical activity
  • Diminished ability to concentrate
  • Increased hopelessness
  • Fatigue
  • Suicide thoughts or attempts

Anxiety disorders are characterised by:

  • Fear of a possible negative event in the future
  • Physiological responses to that fear
  • Behaviours associated to attempt to escape that feared event

Anxiety and depression often co-exist

These symptoms can often overlap. Some people with depression can begin to feel worried about their future or start to develop an avoidance of certain situations. This, in turn, creates an anxious reaction with faced with that situation.

In the same way, someone who experiences anxiety or panic for long enough will begin to feel helpless and hopeless about their future. This can lead to a sense of sadness or depression.

With help from counsellors or psychologists, people who experience these symptoms can find relief and learn to adjust to their circumstances in a more positive way. Symptoms can reduce to the point where professional support is no longer required.

Get help for anxiety and depression today

Normal anxiety versus extended anxiety

It is important to acknowledge that sadness and anxiety are natural responses to stressors and situations that one faces in life. We can all feel sad from time to time and we can all feel worried or frightened. This is normal.

However, some people experience symptoms over a longer period of time. These people may need support from professionals for a longer duration.

Depression disorder or anxiety disorder are only diagnosed after symptoms are experienced over a particular length of time or when they are so intense that they pose a threat to a person’s life or their ability to function.

Common anxiety disorders

There are different anxiety disorders that can present themselves in various ways. Some common anxiety disorders include:

  • SPECIFIC PHOBIA – such as fear of certain animals or an impending storm, etc.
  • GENERALISED ANXIETY DISORDER – where symptoms are more generalised to everyday life rather than a specific condition. This disorder is often related to the idea of having a lot of worry.
  • PANIC DISORDER – where one may have many panic attacks. Anxiety becomes compounded as fear becomes linked to the idea of having another panic attack.
  • SOCIAL ANXIETY DISORDER – worry and avoidance of being in social settings.
  • OBSESSIVE COMPULSIVE DISORDER – often characterised by compulsive actions or behaviours that avoid or reduce the impact of a perceived threat. These may be repetitive in nature such as checking, washing, or tapping.
  • POST TRAUMATIC STRESS DISORDER – An anxiety disorder related to experiencing a traumatic event. This can lead to debilitating symptoms of anxiety such as panic attacks, depersonalisation, and derealisation. It can also lead to avoidance of situations that trigger uncomfortable feelings related to the trauma.

Counselling and treatment for anxiety and depression

Our therapists can help with your journey and goals to re-engage with the life you want for yourself. We can support you to carry out those goals in a way that ensures success as you maintain your progress over time.

Some people find it helpful to get a referral to see a psychiatrist or paediatrician. These medical professionals can prescribe possible medical treatments that will alleviate the symptoms.

Some goals for counselling may include:

  • Education about their conditions
  • Help to understand their symptoms
  • Learning new ways to see and understand themselves and their life, and
  • Developing ways to improve their coping skills and their life in general.