Trauma Processing : Doc Snipes’ Experience

Dr. Dawn-Elise Snipes is a Licensed Professional Counselor and Qualified Clinical Supervisor. She received her PhD in Mental Health Counseling from the University of Florida in 2002. In addition to being a practicing clinician, she has provided training to counselors, social workers, nurses and case managers internationally since 2006 through .com

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Video by Dr. Dawn Elise Snipes on integrative behavioral health approaches including counseling techniques and skills for improving mental health and reducing mental illness.

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Depression – What is It?

Depression is a mood disorder that can cause you to feel down for long periods of time. It is different from normal mood swings, which can be caused by a change in a person’s circumstances or life events.

The disorder can occur in any age and it affects both men and women. Symptoms can range from mild to severe and can last for weeks, months or years.

People with depression typically have feelings of sadness, emptiness and loss of energy that aren’t a part of everyday life. They may also have difficulty concentrating, remembering details or making decisions. They may also have problems sleeping or eating and think about death often.

It’s a serious mental health condition that is difficult to live with and it can be hard to treat. It can also make it harder to work and have relationships with other people.

You’ll need to talk to a doctor, psychologist or other mental health professional if you have symptoms of depression. They will use various tests and questionnaires to diagnose your depression and recommend treatment.

Some of the most common treatments include medications, psychotherapy (talk therapy) and medication in combination with psychotherapy. Medication can help to change the way your brain chemistry works so it can regulate your emotions.

Medications can help improve your depression by increasing the availability of certain chemicals in your brain that regulate mood. They are called neurotransmitters. Antidepressants are the most commonly prescribed medication to treat depression.

These drugs come in many different forms and are available from your pharmacy or health care provider. You may need to try several kinds before finding one that is right for you. Your doctor or pharmacist can explain how each medication works, including side effects.

Medication may take a few weeks or more to kick in, and it’s important that you start taking your medication on schedule. Your doctor will be able to tell when you need to increase your dose or switch to a new medication.

You should also talk to your doctor if you have thoughts of suicide, because this is a serious emergency that requires immediate medical attention. Call 911 or text TALK to 741741 to reach the local crisis line.

Your health care provider will need to learn more about your current symptoms and other factors that might be causing them, such as family history of depression or medical conditions like chronic pain. They may need to do a physical exam and order blood tests.

Genetics, faulty mood regulation in the brain and stressful life events are believed to play a role in depression. If you have a parent or sibling who has depression, you’re about three times more likely to develop it yourself.

Other risk factors include early childhood trauma, pain or chronic illness. A history of substance use or abuse, such as alcohol and tobacco, can also contribute to your risk.

The most effective treatment for most people with depression is to talk with a mental health professional and get the medication that is best for you. You can find a provider near you through the NIMH Find Help for Mental Illnesses website.

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