Depression and Anxiety Counselling in London

Depression and Anxiety Counselling in London

Depression and anxiety are common psychological conditions that might affect you at various stages of life. 

Often, these conditions appear individually, but they frequently co-occur, a situation referred to as comorbidity. For example, you can have both depression and anxiety at the same time. 

A worldwide study in 2015 revealed that nearly 41.6% of individuals experience both major depression and anxiety disorder concurrently. 

Depression typically manifests as persistent sadness and a sense of hopelessness, whereas if you have anxiety, you may worry constantly, have intrusive thoughts (ie disturbing and harmful thoughts that you can’t control), and pervasive fear. 

Despite having different symptoms, depression and anxiety often share several signs. The most common symptom among both these conditions is irritability. 

The specific manifestation of these disorders varies from person to person, making it difficult to pinpoint the exact reason for one’s feelings. 

You may have anxiety due to negative experiences you may have faced in childhood (eg bullying, struggles with academic performance). 

On the other hand, someone else may have anxiety due to genetics or environmental factors (eg Seasonal affective disorder; having anxiety or depression due to lack of sunlight).

It’s crucial to recognise that both depression and anxiety are manageable with appropriate professional intervention. 

At Talk Your Heart Out (TYHO), our team of skilled Therapists in London specialises in providing effective treatment for depression and anxiety. Our main goal is to help improve your overall wellness. 

We invite you to read further as we delve into the various symptoms, causes, and types of depression and anxiety. Additionally, we will outline what you can anticipate when undergoing therapy with our team. 

Please note: At TYHO, the term ‘Therapists’ encompasses psychologists, counsellors, and psychotherapists in London.

Symptoms

Read this section to learn more about the key signs of anxiety and depression. We also share some of the overlapping symptoms that you may have if you have a comorbidity of both disorders. 

Do note that the below signs are common and the most easily detected elements of mental health conditions. 

What you may experience may be similar or something completely different. For example, according to research, people with muscle pain have a higher risk for depression, and people with depression have a higher chance of developing chronic pain. 

Similarly, another research shows that around 35% of chronic pain patients also have anxiety disorders, compared to 18% of the general population. 

Hence, even if you relate to one or more of the symptoms below and if you suspect that you may have either of the issues – we urge you to seek help from our psychotherapists in London

Symptoms of Depression

At TYHO, we provide online depression counselling in London to help you manage and cope with feelings of sadness and despair. 

Our UK counsellors specialising in depression may use evidence-based techniques like cognitive behavioural therapy (CBT) and dialectic behavioural therapy (DBT), depending on what works best for you. 

If you have any of the symptoms below, your Therapist can help you overcome them. 

Here are several typical symptoms of depression: 

Frequently experiencing an overwhelming sense of grief, desolation, and a void

Note: An increase in weight does not directly mean you have a disorder. Your weight changes have to be directly related to mood swings or fatigue to be diagnosed with depression.

Symptoms of Anxiety

Anxiety manifests uniquely in everyone, yet certain symptoms are widely common and detectable. 

If you identify with any two or more of the following signs given below, anxiety counselling in London can help you gain control of your emotions.  

Common symptoms of anxiety include: 

Similar to the note given for symptoms of depression, try not to rely entirely on the above list. 

The signs given above are non-exhaustive. Hence, if you have a feeling that you’re struggling with anxiety (or any other conditions with similar symptoms), do seek professional help. 

Overlapping Symptoms

People struggling with anxiety, depression, or both conditions may not always exhibit a universal set of symptoms. 

The signs can vary widely, but commonly include: 

Specifically for anxiety, one might experience: 

In contrast, key symptoms of depression might manifest as:

Causes

Causes of Depression

Studies indicate that depression is a complex condition with multiple contributing factors. These factors may be completely different for everyone.  

For example, while some people may experience depression due to a negative life experience such as unemployment or financial issues, others may find that their depression is because of biological factors or chronic health conditions (eg premenstrual dysphoric disorder). 

The environment one is in also plays a major role in the onset of mental health issues. It is surprisingly easy to feel lonely in a big city like London.

Loneliness is associated with issues such as depression, anxiety, and sleep problems. In a transient place like London, some of the more common causes of depression may be living away from family, friends, or communities.

For example, according to a 2019 survey, nearly 8% of Londoners feel lonely always or often. The same statistics also show that loneliness is felt more strongly by those on lower incomes. 

Moreover, experiences of severe adversity in early life, including exposure to domestic violence or neglect, might predispose individuals to depression in later years. 

Such traumatic experiences (eg Narcissistic gaslighting) can profoundly influence one’s self-worth and alter the way they interact with the world. 

Depression can also be a secondary condition triggered by other mental health conditions, such as eating disorders or post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD)

Additionally, persistent physical issues, such as muscular discomfort seen in conditions like thyroid disorders or arthritis, can drastically affect one’s daily living and mood. 

Finally, familial patterns in depression suggest a genetic or behavioural inheritance, where individuals might inherit not only biological predispositions but also maladaptive coping strategies observed within the family.

Causes of Anxiety

Anxiety acts as a primitive survival mechanism. It is similar to the ‘fight or flight’ response.   

For example, when our ancestors faced threats, they would either run away or fight the threat. A hunter may run away from a lion but might confront or fight a deer.  

In modern times, our threats have shifted from physical predators to various social and personal challenges. 

Our body’s instinctive response to these stressors is anxiety. Therefore, our response to ‘threat’ shows up as discomfort or worry.  

According to the Mental Health Foundation (2023), nearly 73% of the UK population feel anxious at least sometimes, and almost 20% feel anxious most or all of the time.   

The same survey showed that the cost-of-living crisis was one of the most common causes of anxiety. Moreover, people aged 35-64 years old were most anxious about financial problems.   

A lot of people also keep their anxiety hidden due to stigma and societal judgements.   

Some of the other common causes of anxiety might include:  

  • Traumatic experiences: Traumatic situations such as breaking up with a partner (ie moving on from deep emotional attachments) or facing abuse in a relationship can trigger anxiety.  
  • Physical health: Conditions affecting the heart or hormonal imbalances like thyroid disorder might contribute to anxiety.  
  • Genetic predisposition: A family history of anxiety can increase the risk of developing the condition.  
  • Neurological factors: Imbalances in the brain (ie emotional processing centres – finding it hard to control or manage emotions) can lead to anxiety.  
  • Addictions: Excessive consumption of stimulants like caffeine, alcohol, or certain medications may cause anxiety.

Types

Types of Depression

Below are some of the common types of depression.

  • Major Depressive Disorder (MDD): Having MDD might mean experiencing a pervasive feeling of sadness and a lack of interest in previously enjoyed activities. Common symptoms of MDD may include drastic fluctuations in appetite and weight, disturbances in sleep patterns, and persistent fatigue. 
  • Persistent Depressive Disorder (PDD): This condition was previously known as dysthymia. If you have PDD, you may have a chronic feeling of sadness and difficulty in carrying out simple, everyday tasks such as personal grooming. Common characteristics of PDD involve having low moods, low self-esteem, and problems with concentration and decision-making. 
  • Bipolar Disorder: Those with bipolar disorder experience significant mood swings, typically swinging between depressive and manic states. In a depressive state, one may have feelings of sadness, fatigue, and hopelessness. During a manic state, a person may have lots of energy (ie mania), rapid thoughts, and exhibit impulsive behaviours. 
  • Postpartum Depression (PPD): PPD may occur in the first year after childbirth. The condition can profoundly affect your ability to look after both yourself and your newborn. Typical symptoms include persistent sadness, feelings of hopelessness, and disturbed sleep patterns. 
  • Premenstrual Dysphoric Disorder (PMDD): As an extreme variant of premenstrual syndrome (PMS), PMDD brings about intense emotional changes, strong cravings, and depressive symptoms such as deep sadness and feelings of unworthiness. These are often most noticeable in the weeks preceding menstruation.

Types of Anxiety

Below are some of the common types of anxiety disorders. 

  • Generalised Anxiety Disorder (GAD): Individuals with GAD find themselves overly concerned with various aspects of everyday life, such as health, money, family, or career. This constant worry can last for months and may drastically affect their ability to perform and function. 
  • Panic Disorder: Those suffering from panic disorder might experience abrupt, intense episodes of panic that can peak rapidly. These panic attacks might include symptoms such as accelerated heart rate, sweating, and shakiness, along with a feeling of perpetual threat, even when the person is safe. 
  • Specific Phobias: A person with a phobia experiences an overwhelming and unrealistic fear towards a particular object or situation. Often, the fear is out of proportion to the actual danger. For example, you may have a fear of illness or an intense aversion to water. Even thinking about the fear can cause extreme anxiety and can affect your social interaction and professional or academic life. 
  • Social Anxiety Disorder: Individuals with social anxiety disorder face intense nervousness, worry, or panic in social settings due to fear of judgment or embarrassment. This condition goes beyond typical shyness. If you have social anxiety, you may face difficulty in maintaining relationships. 
  • Obsessive-Compulsive Disorder (OCD): OCD is characterised by persistent, unwanted thoughts (obsessions) and the urge to perform certain repetitive behaviours (compulsions). These compulsions, often ritualistic, can dominate one’s life and affect various aspects such as social, personal, work, and academics. 
  • Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD): PTSD can occur after experiencing or witnessing a traumatic event. Symptoms include having distressing thoughts and memories of the trauma. These thoughts may manifest as flashbacks, nightmares, or severe anxiety. The symptoms can affect personal relationships, sleep, and overall well-being. 

Management

Managing Depression and Anxiety

During depression counselling in London, you and your counsellor will explore and identify how depression affects your life and what you can do to reduce or manage the symptoms. 

Your UK psychologist may use an integrative approach. This means that they may use multiple therapeutic modalities to treat one or more issues. 

The approaches our Therapists use could include: 

  • Cognitive behavioural therapy
  • Narrative therapy 
  • Schema therapy
  • Dialectical behavioural therapy
  • Mindfulness-based therapy

Using either one or several tools, your Therapist can help you:

  • Regulate your emotions
  • Improve your cognitive processes
  • Improve self-esteem and life satisfaction
  • Create and maintain personal relationships
  • Gain deeper self-insight

In certain instances, your Therapist may use just one approach, like narrative therapy, to address issues like negative thought cycles. 

Therapy sessions at TYHO will typically involve tackling different life aspects, including emotional state, irritability, sleep patterns, appetite, communication abilities, and coping strategies. 

Similarly, during anxiety counselling in London, your Therapist may use approaches like acceptance and commitment therapy (ACT) to: 

  • Encourage unconditional acceptance of thoughts and emotions
  • Encourage a perspective that views thoughts as mere words, not absolute realities

For instance, if your social anxiety prevents you from making new friends, you might think of yourself as inherently incapable of forming meaningful bonds. This belief might prevent you from seeking out friendships despite your efforts. 

In such scenarios, your online Therapist in London might apply ACT methods like cognitive diffusion to help reinterpret these beliefs as transient thoughts. 

You might be encouraged to associate these thoughts with a physical object (such as a balloon) or view them as fleeting ideas.  

How to Find a Counsellor for Depression & Anxiety?

If you are seeking support for depression or anxiety and want to find someone trustworthy, please visit this link: https://app.talkyourheartout.com/

Our platform allows you to personalise your search for a Therapist by specifying preferences such as gender, therapy style, specialisations, medium, languages spoken, and the particular issues you wish to address. 

Select an anxiety counsellor in London by going through comprehensive profiles available for professionals across the United Kingdom. 

Key aspects to consider in your selection include: 

  • Academic and professional credentials
  • Years and scope of practice
  • Areas of specialisation
  • Therapeutic techniques and methodologies
  • Accreditation and certifications
  • Language proficiency
  • Personal and professional ethos

In every Therapist profile, you will find detailed information along with introductory videos for a more personal insight into the Therapist’ approach. 

Upon identifying your ideal Therapist, proceed by clicking on the ‘Book a Session’ option. Here, you can decide on the session’s date and mode (like online audio or video consultations) and costs and confirm the Therapist’s availability. 

Create an account on our platform to finalise your booking. Confirmation of your appointment will be promptly sent to your email and accessible via your TYHO dashboard. 

Additionally, you can manage and review your therapy appointments conveniently through your user dashboard. 

If you are interested in long-term support, consider our package options for sessions at reduced rates. Detailed pricing and package information are available on our pricing page. 

For help in selecting a Therapist or any questions, reach out to us via email at [email protected] or WhatsApp through the link on the lower right of our site. 

Your mental health journey is important to us, and we’re here to support you every step of the way! 

How to Get the Most Out of Counselling

To begin, prioritise establishing a connection with a TYHO Therapist with whom you feel comfortable and confident.   

Explore each UK Therapist’s profile. In every profile, you can delve into their areas of expertise, credentials, areas of focus, and therapeutic techniques.  

The importance of a healthy and affirmative relationship between you and your Therapist has been highlighted by numerous studies.  

In fact, recent research indicated that a good therapeutic alliance has a strong correlation with successful therapy results.   

To find a perfect Therapist for yourself, think about how comfortable and accepted you feel when discussing your honest thoughts and experiences.   

A sense of safety and acceptance are key indicators of a promising therapeutic partnership.   

Rest assured, every professional within our network adheres to TYHO’s foundational principles of empathy, open-mindedness, and a non-judgmental attitude.   

If you ever find that your current Therapist doesn’t quite fit your needs, don’t hesitate to explore other options.   

The journey to finding the right Therapist might take time, but it’s a crucial step in setting a solid groundwork for your therapeutic journey.  

Additionally, try to use the therapy tools outside therapy. To do so, finish all the suggested exercises, explore cognitive techniques, and reflect on the insights gained in previous sessions. You can even maintain a separate therapy notebook to jot down your thoughts.   

Your effort outside therapy could increase the progress made during sessions. After all, you are learning all the scientific tools to become self-reliant and improve your life! 

Moreover, try to maintain an open dialogue with your Therapist. If you face challenges or are uncertain about therapy and how it could benefit you, address these issues directly. Your feedback is invaluable in tailoring the therapy to your needs.  

Improving Your Therapy Experience

Ask your Therapist several questions about the process and clarify your doubts. 

Below are some questions you can ask:  

  • What therapy approach can help me? Do you have the expertise to use this approach?   
  • How will we measure and monitor my therapy progress?  
  • What strategies can I use to increase the benefits of therapy?  
  • How should I handle intense anxiety outside our sessions?  

Before starting therapy, try to:   

  • Compile a list of symptoms and problems to discuss in your first session  
  • Be prepared to talk about significant life events and relationships (both past and current relationships) 
  • Jot down any questions or doubts regarding the therapy process or the Therapist’s qualifications  
  • Reflect and articulate your therapy goals (eg this can help personalise the therapeutic plan for you) 

Remember, depression counselling and anxiety counselling in London is a collaborative effort between you and your counsellor.   

When you participate in therapy actively and be as honest as possible, you are setting the foundation for progress in managing your mental health.

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