Depression and Anxiety Issues
Depression and anxiety issues commonly affect the mental health of individuals. At In Focus, we understand how debilitating these symptoms can be and we hope to help individuals experiencing these symptoms cope better and live more engaging lives.
If you are experiencing depression and/or anxiety issues, or any other issues affecting your mental and emotional well-being, you do not need to go through this alone. It is understandable that some may have reservations opening up for help, but reaching out for counselling support can be one of the most valuable things you can do for yourself.
It is our firm belief that, with a little help, you will cope even more effectively and eventually be on the path towards the life that you desire.
At In Focus, we provide a safe space for you to tell your story and seek help. Our counsellors and therapists genuinely care about your well-being, and are here to walk with you through the challenging phases of life. Contact us to find out how we can support you in this time.
Feeling sad or down from time to time is a normal part of life. While it may be unpleasant to experience these emotions, they usually do not last long for most people. On the other hand, persistent feelings of a sense of helplessness and despair could significantly affect your day-to-day living. If not managed, such feelings and thoughts could spiral downwards, affecting one’s quality of life, work and relationships. Symptoms associated with depression vary from person to person. Some describe it as “living in a black hole” or being followed around by a “suffocating grey cloud.” Others feel lifeless, apathetic, or empty and might find it difficult to engage socially, or lose interest in their work or in activities they used to enjoy. Depressive symptoms can also include fatigue, difficulty experiencing pleasure or joy, sleeping difficulties, changes in appetite, anger or irritability, self-loathing, reckless behaviours and difficulty concentrating. However, it is possible to manage, and to even overcome, these symptoms.
If the above describes what you may be experiencing, you do not have to go through it alone. Speaking with a counsellor or a therapist at In Focus can help you discover additional resources and skills to cope more effectively and to live the life that you want. Contact us to find out how we can support you in this time.
Anxiety is the body’s natural response to stress or a threat of danger. It is a feeling of fear or apprehension about what is to come. It is common to feel anxious from time to time, especially in a fast-paced society like Singapore. There are also some situations which are new and challenging where it is normal to feel anxious or nervous, like a job interview, the first day at school or at a new work place, taking a test, or making an important presentation. Feeling anxious can be uncomfortable, but it is not necessarily a bad thing. In some situations, it can help us stay focused and can motivate us to work towards our goals. Feelings of anxiety normally come and go and do not interfere much with our everyday life.
Feelings of anxiety can manifest as feelings of dread and apprehension, being on constant alert for danger, anticipating the worst, difficulties concentrating, feeling tense and irritable, and blanking out in the mind. Anxiety can also manifest as physical sensations such as heart palpitations, shortness of breath, headaches and dizziness, stomach upsets, frequent urination / diarrhea, muscle tension / twitching, shaking, sweating, difficulties sleeping.
If these symptoms become regular or overwhelming, or if one experiences abrupt surges of intense fear without any specific triggers and debilitates and immobilises within minutes (commonly known as “panic attacks”), one’s daily life and functioning would be affected.
In a medical approach, psychiatrists may diagnose a person with “anxiety disorder” if a person experiences intense and prolonged anxiety that affects one’s daily living and leads to unexplained physical symptoms and an avoidance of places or situations that give rise to the anxiety. Under the medical model, there are different types of “anxiety disorders”, such as “panic disorder”, “social anxiety disorder”, and “generalised anxiety disorder”:
- “Panic disorder” – When unexpected, recurring panic attacks arise and they are not situation specific
- “Social anxiety disorder” – When the panic attacks are related to being in public or social settings
- “Generalised anxiety disorder” – When there are recurrent anxious thoughts and excessive worries lasting for a prolonged period
If the above describes what you may be experiencing, please know that you do not have to go through it alone. A diagnosis, if any, provides one with information of one’s struggles but it is not the determinant of one’s future. At In Focus, our counsellors are able to work with you to make sense of what you are experiencing and help you discover resources and skills to manage the anxiety symptoms more effectively, and grow towards living the life that you want. Contact us to find out how we can support you in this time.
While anxiety issues and depression can occur separately, some people struggle with both. Lifestyle changes, such as changes to diet and sleeping habits, and incorporating meaningful activities to stay active and to recharge can bring about improvements. In addition, reaching out for counselling support is an extremely helpful step to take.
At In Focus, we respect that everyone’s situation is unique. Our counsellors and therapists believe in customizing our work to suit our clients and the issues before us while drawing on professional counselling and therapy approaches and our experiences in the field. Contact us to find out how we can support you in this time.