While the term depression might sound daunting, it is a common mood disorder experienced by 17.3 million adults in the United States, representing 7.1% of the population.
The symptoms of depression often include:
A frequent depressed mood
Reduced interest or pleasure in daily activities
Major weight loss or gain with changes in appetite
A loss of sexual desire
Excessive or inappropriate guilt
Difficulty in concentrating or thinking
The causes of depression vary among biological to environmental factors such as genetic features, brain chemical imbalances, environmental distresses, and psychological and social influences.
Support groups are safe spaces structured to allow participants to share personal experiences, feelings, coping strategies and information about symptoms and treatments. The discussions often are facilitated by an experienced leader or a medical professional.
Feeling isolated or lonely might be a vicious cycle that leads to worsening depression symptoms. Support groups can allow us to make connections, providing tangible benefits to people experiencing mental health issues.
Benefits of participating in support groups can include:
Reducing feelings of loneliness, isolation and stigma
Getting practical advice or information about treatment options
Reducing distress, depression, anxiety or fatigue
Talking openly and honestly about your feelings
Gaining a sense of empowerment, control or hope
Learning about health, economic or social resources
Benefits of online support groups can include:
Faster time to get help, skipping appointment wait time
More frequent or flexible participation
A cost effective way to see a licensed mental health professional
A degree of privacy or anonymity comparing to local community support groups
Opportunities for people in areas with no face-to-face support groups
You are not alone. Herd is ready to support you.