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How is depression treated? At Affordable Counseling Center In Tampa FL, and Brandon FL.

The team at Affordable Counseling Center in Tampa FL, and Brandon FL, treats depression with therapy. The choice of therapy depends on the cause of your depression and the severity of your symptoms.

Your Affordable Counseling Center in Tampa FL, and Brandon FL, therapist recommends the type of psychotherapy that fits your goals. During therapy, you may learn coping skills that help you manage life challenges. You may need to identify and deal with negative thoughts or learn stress management.

Talk therapy has another benefit you may not expect. Your brain constantly changes as you learn new things. As you explore your thoughts and feelings during therapy, the stimulation boosts nerve activity and helps rebalance brain chemicals.

Lifestyle changes can also improve your mood. You may need to fine-tune your diet to get the nutrients needed for producing neurotransmitters.

If you feel depressed for longer than two weeks, call Affordable Counseling Center in Tampa FL, and Brandon FL, or request an appointment online today.


Depression Therapy At Affordable Counseling Center in Tampa FL, and Brandon FL.

  • Feeling sad, empty tired, guilty or hopeless. Nothing makes you happy?
  • Are you becoming isolated or lonely but can’t reach out to people?
  • Does life seem like more trouble than it’s worth?

We all have the blues sometimes. But if you have clinical depression in Tampa FL, and Brandon FL, it’s more than just a down mood or sad feeling. Major depression is not an emotion. It is a major medical disorder that affects nearly 5-10% of adults in a given year. Over a lifetime you have a 20%, or one in five, chance of having an episode of depression. Women are twice as likely to get depression as men.

With depression in Tampa FL, and Brandon FL, you may feel sad and hopeless, but you may not know why. Unlike sadness or the blues, depression is actually a biochemical disorder that affects just about every area of your life.

You may even have had self-destructive or suicidal thoughts. If this is the case, it is crucial that you seek help.

Affordable Counseling Center in Tampa FL, and Brandon FL, can help.

You might also find yourself having physical symptoms from depression such as:

  • Joint pain
  • Limb pain
  • Back pain
  • Gastrointestinal problems
  • Lowered immune response
  • Feeling heavy or slowed down

Often, these mysterious physical symptoms can be the first signs of depression.

But mostly, with depression in Tampa FL, and Brandon FL, you just don’t feel like yourself. You may feel like you’re covered with a wet blanket, or that you’re removed from reality, that nothing seems real, or that you don’t even seem real. Normal pleasure and joy become elusive.

Make no mistake. Depression is a serious disorder and you deserve help to overcome it!

The good news is that Major Depression in Tampa FL, and Brandon FL, is very treatable! With the right therapy, and the right therapist, you can overcome depression and live the life you were meant to live!

Contact Affordable Counseling Center in Tampa FL, and Brandon FL, to set up an appointment with one of our therapists who specialize in helping people overcome depression.

Often the person who is depressed in Tampa FL, and Brandon FL, is the last one to know. If people are telling you that you seem down or blue or depressed, it’s a good idea to be evaluated.

One type of depression, Dysthymic Disorder, or Dysthymia, can be a little tricky to recognize because it is a long-term, low-grade depression that people often learn to live with, albeit at a less happy, less functional level.   When is the last time you remember feeling really happy? If you can’t remember, you may well have Dysthymia.

Bipolar Disorder is s form of depression in Tampa FL, and Brandon FL, that is marked by alternating periods of elation and depression. Some types of Bipolar Disorder are marked by increased irritability rather than elation. It is a disorder that is often treated with medications. However, that is not the only treatment that is in order. At Affordable Counseling Center in Tampa FL, and Brandon FL, our counselors are expert in helping you determine whether your depression could be bipolar disorder.

Kids and teens also get depressed. About 5% of children may have depression in Tampa FL, and Brandon FL, at any given time. For kids, depression often goes hand in hand with learning or attention problems. Kids with depression often act out with anger, irritation, or by being oppositional, or they may withdraw from family and peers. They may want to run away, they may engage in self-harming behaviors such as cutting or drug use, and they may reject otherwise fun activities. They may start dressing in a way that is provocative. If you see any of these things, it’s a good idea to have your child checked out by a professional. At Affordable Counseling Center in Tampa FL, and Brandon FL, our child and adolescent counselors have expertise in evaluating whether your child has depression, and will help determine whether your child needs treatment.

Treatment for Depression

At Affordable Counseling Counseling Center in Tampa FL, and Brandon FL, our counselors are skilled in diagnosing and treating all types of depression. You will learn to identify the “stinking thinking” that keeps you depressed and you will learn skills to manage and eliminate your depression. You will learn to care for and be loving toward yourself. Your therapist will support your efforts to feel better, and will help you process and resolve issues that keep you stuck. And, most importantly, you will gain confidence in your ability to manage your moods. Sometimes medication is can be helpful, and your therapist will help you determine whether a medication evaluation is in order.

The sooner you address your depression in Tampa FL, and Brandon FL, the sooner you can resolve it.


Does Going to the Grocery Store Make You Anxious? Here Are Some Tips to Help Shopping Become a Better Experience At Affordable Counseling Center in Tampa FL, and Brandon FL.

Do you avoid, or are you reluctant, to go grocery shopping due to anxiety in Tampa FL, and Brandon FL? The entire grocery shopping experience comes with a ton of sensory input, decision making, and variables that are out of our control. Try these 7 tips and tricks to make your next grocery store experience more manageable and perhaps even enjoyable.

Get Prepared

  • Start by making a list of breakfasts, lunches, and dinners you plan to eat over the next week.
  • Next, write out the ingredients you need for the meals.

Organize Your List

Organize your list by sections of the store:

Choose Your Shopping Time Wisely

  • Google Maps released an article in 2020 highlighting that Saturdays 12PM-3PM tend to be the busiest shopping time while Mondays at 8AM are the least busy.
  • Of course, all stores are different and there’s no way to predict the store’s occupancy at any given time, but you can follow the trends.

Be Mindful About Which Grocery Store You Choose

  • You know those grocery stores that have narrow aisles, bright fluorescence lights, only big shopping carts, and stockers at all hours of the day blocking the shelf you need to get to? This could be a recipe for sensory overload.
  • It may be difficult to find a store that checks all of your boxes for a peaceful sensory experience but decide which are the most important to you and pick your grocery store based on those factors.

Focus On The Senses You Can Control

  • Chewing on gum, using headphones, and wearing your most comfortable hoodie are modifications you have control over. A more in-depth sensory diet before, or after shopping could also help with our self-care.
  • Different ways to implement a sensory diet.

Prepare yourself for small talk at check-out

  • Self check-out can be great to avoid human interaction
  • If self check-out isn’t an option, try to remember that even if you feel awkward interacting with others, they likely don’t even notice because they are focused on their own concerns.

Reward Yourself!

  • You did it! You survived the grocery store. Now reward yourself with your favorite coffee, ice cream, take-out, etc.!
  • Having something to look forward to throughout the shopping experience can also make it easier to get through.


Social Anxiety Disorder At Affordable Counseling Center in Tampa FL, and Brandon FL.

Social Anxiety Disorder is typically described as the fear of being negatively perceived by others. One may live in constant fear of embarrassing oneself in public by making mistakes. Everyday tasks such as eating in restaurants or talking on the phone become a struggle. Symptoms of social anxiety disorder in Tampa FL, and Brandon FL, include:

  • Fear of being judged by others
  • Blushing
  • Fear of social events
  • Sweating
  • Fear of embarrassment

Anxiety does not have to rule your life. There are many significant and effective treatments for anxiety in Tampa Fl, and Brandon FL, and its disorders. The onset and patterns of anxiety are often triggered by a traumatic event such as the death of a parent, a car accident, or a significant separation from a loved one. Psychotherapy (talk therapy) can help you name and understand when and where your anxieties may have originated, how they continue to get the best of you, and what strategies you need to learn in order to regain confidence and a sense of safety. Cognitive Behavioral Therapy (CBT) is a commonly used method to treat anxiety. CBT is a goal-oriented psychotherapy treatment that uses a practical, hand-on approach to problem-solving. By changing the patterns of thinking and behavior associated with one’s anxieties, the anxiety in Tampa FL, and Brandon FL, itself can be addressed. It is possible to learn how to more accurately assess and test the level of threat/danger (anxiety) you feel, as well as increase your confidence in your ability to cope with the threats/dangers you encounter. EMDR therapy is extremely effective in addressing trauma that continues to leave us feeling vulnerable, in danger, and full of anxiety. EMDR allows the brain to process and “refile” a traumatic event by creating new neural paths related to that event, thus lowering—and often removing—the anxiety associated with past trauma. A skilled and compassionate therapist at Affordable Counseling Center in Tampa FL, and Brandon FL, can help you name, understand, and reduce your anxiety. It is possible to gain courage, confidence, and boldness. It is possible to embrace, enter into, and enjoy a richer, more fulfilling, and more peaceful life.


Depressed Gambler Causations, Consequences, and Solutions At Affordable Counseling Center in Tampa FL, and Brandon FL.

Depressed Gambler

There are six types of depression. You have already recognized that it’s correlated to one concern – gambling. You find that when feeling depressed in Tampa FL, and Brandon FL, you are more likely to visit a casino and/or spend significant time on online betting platforms. This is problematic, as a depressed gambler (so to speak) faces a greater risk of gambling disorder than the general population. The good news, is that you’ve decided to take action by researching information on why you participate in the activity when in an “emotional funk”. Allow us to take it from here with a look at the causations, consequences, and most importantly, the solutions.

Why It’s a Bad Idea to Gamble When Fighting Feelings of Depression (and what needs to be done)

Leads to Habitual Behavior

Gambling can cause your brain to release dopamine, which is the “feel-good” neurotransmitter that makes you feel excited. Even losing money can trigger its release to the same extent as winning. This may be why you gamble when feelings of depression creep into your psyche. When your brain and body become accustomed to this psychological and physiological response, habitual behavior can form. Once it becomes habitual, your brain gets used to the dopamine, which makes that elevated feeling difficult to sustain at the same level of gambling that you started with. Consequently, you may have to gamble more often and/or for longer periods to sustain the same level of pleasure. This depression-induced neuroadaptation can enhance habitual learning and contribute to an enhanced vulnerability to develop gambling disorder. If you find that you’re using gambling to elevate out of a depressed in Tampa FL< nad Brandon FL, emotional state, please understand that you’re setting the table for consequences beyond lost wagers. Keep reading.

Creates Stronger Feelings of Depression

Most people don’t have the time or resources to gamble all day, so at some point you have to take a break. However, when you do, you may experience a post-gambling dopamine crash. For the average person this can bring on feelings of depression. For someone who is already predisposed to depression in Tampa FL, and Brandon FL, the post-gambling drop in dopamine is especially problematic. Dopamine depletion is linked to neurological health conditions like depression. When going through gambling withdrawal (even within minutes of taking a break) the feelings of depression that you had leading into the activity typically become even stronger than they were to begin with. This creates an exceedingly vicious cycle.

Co-occuring Conditions

Did you know that depression and gambling disorder are co-occurring mental health conditions? People with co-occurring disorders are at higher risk for additional problems such as symptomatic relapse, financial challenges, social isolation, family problems, sexual dysfunction, criminal activity and subsequent incarceration, serious medical illnesses, and more. The connection between depression in Tampa FL, and Brandon FL, and problem gambling is so wrought with dangerous consequence that to persist is to put yourself at tremendous risk.

Immediate Intervention

As a depressed gambler, you must reach out to someone right away. But given the aforementioned risks associated with the mental/emotional state and the activity, that someone must be a specialized therapist who can help you overcome depression in Tampa FL, and Brandon FL, and co-occurring gambling disorder. Given limited access to specialists in your area (along with your concerns about privacy) you need an outlet to receive immediate intervention in a safe, confidential, and effective environment. Affordable Counseling Center in Tampa FL, and Brandon FL, provides exactly that.


What Type of Anxiety Is This? At Affordable Counseling Center in Tampa FL, and Brandon FL.

Feeling like you’re the only person dealing with your particular form of anxiety can make it worse. Your counselor will help you understand the various types of anxiety in Tampa FL, and Brandon FL, and which one you’re dealing with. In many cases, clients end up being diagnosed with more than one type of anxiety. Though there are many different types of anxiety disorders, a few of the most common ones include:

  • Panic disorders: This form of anxiety is characterized by panic attacks. People often mistake these for heart attacks and also experience a sudden feeling of lost control.
  • Social anxiety disorder: This anxiety disorder in Tampa FL, and Brandon FL, is, as you probably guessed, characterized by anxiety that’s felt in social interactions/situations. One might feel anxious when speaking in public, in a job interview, or when going out with friends.
  • Generalized anxiety disorder (GAD): This type of anxiety is the kind you’re likely most familiar with. GAD is characterized by anxiety that is felt in a range of different situations and day to day events.
  • Post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD): Post-traumatic stress disorder is also a form of anxiety, though many people do not realize it fits into this category. PTSD is triggered by traumatic events and comes with harmful symptoms like flashbacks and nightmares.
  • Obsessive-compulsive disorder (OCD): Another common type of anxiety in Tampa FL, and Brandon FL, OCD is characterized by unhealthy thoughts and compulsions that the individual just can’t shake.

Are you displaying symptoms of a possible anxiety disorder? Don’t suffer in silence. Reach out for help and learn to manage and reduce this anxiety today. At Affordable Counseling Center in Tampa FL, and Brandon FL, your anxiety therapist will work to understand your particular presentation of anxiety and then design a treatment plan with your exact needs in mind.

Anxiety Treatment: What Will Help?

There is a wide range of treatment options available to you. Some clients choose to take medications but remember that their purpose is to treat the symptoms of anxiety – not the core cause. Anxiety therapy in Tampa FL, and Brandon FL, will help you dig deep, look back at your life, and find out why you’re experiencing anxiety in the first place.

Many people have gone through a traumatic experience that has led to their anxiety. Others are simply born with a higher likelihood of experiencing anxiety. When you work with us, you’ll work one-on-one with a counselor in Tampa FL, and Brandon FL, who will create a customized plan for you.


Is this Postpartum Depression? At Affordable Counseling Center in Tampa FL, and Brandon FL.

A woman’s mind, body, and spirit change when she becomes pregnant. Statistics suggest that 15%-20% of women report symptoms of depression during or after pregnancy. Not to mention postpartum depression in Tampa FL, and Brandon FL, is often unreported. The number of women who suffer from postpartum depression is likely significantly higher.

Perinatal mood disorders effect women of every age, race, and culture.

The first three months following childbirth are often considered the period of highest risk for the onset of postpartum depression in Tampa FL, and Brandon FL. Nonetheless, new moms may become increasingly aware of their symptoms as more time passes. It is not uncommon for women to enter into treatment several months after giving birth.

Below are some commonly asked questions by postpartum women.

What are the signs of Postpartum Depression?

There are many symptoms associated with postpartum depression in Tampa FL, and Brandon FL. Some of these include:

  • Difficulty sleeping (too much or too little sleep)
  • Difficulty eating
  • Feeling angry or irritable
  • Feeling sad or depressed
  • Feeling anxious
  • Extreme fatigue or loss of energy
  • Having disturbing thoughts
  • Inability to think clearly or concentrate
  • Difficulty connecting with your baby
  • Feeling overwhelmed
  • Worried you might harm your baby or yourself

It’s important to remember the symptoms associated with Postpartum Depression in Tampa FL, and Brandon FL, range from mild to severe. If you’re experiencing any of these symptoms, no matter the severity, please seek support.

Are there additional risk factors?

You may be at a higher risk for postpartum depression in Tampa FL, and Brandon FL, if:

  • You have a history of depression or you have experienced a postpartum mood or anxiety disorder with another pregnancy.
  • You have a history of painful or challenging life experiences or difficulty navigating life transitions.
  • You have been diagnosed with Premenstrual Dysphoric Disorder (PMDD)
  • You have complicated or ambivalent feelings about motherhood.

I’m really struggling, but I don’t think it’s postpartum depression; what is it?

Although the psychological and emotional challenges during and after pregnancy are most often referred to as Postpartum Depression in Tampa FL, and Brandon FL, many other forms of perinatal and postpartum distress exist. These include:

  • anxiety
  • bipolar disorder
  • obsessive compulsive disorder (OCD)
  • post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD)
  • postpartum psychosis

I think I have Postpartum Depression, what now?

Be gentle with yourself. Remember that this is a period of unique life stress, massive hormonal change, and completely uncharted territory. Although it can seem difficult, seek the help and support you need by contacting a licensed mental health professional at Affordable Counseling Center in Tampa FL, and Brandon FL, with whom you feel safe and ideally specializes in postpartum depression.

There’s nothing in life that impacts you, your relationships, and your body more than having a baby. More often than not, a new mom is working hard to revert to the lifestyle she had before her baby while at the same time taking on the endless new demands of being a mother. If you’re struggling, trust yourself. Make space to get the support you need by talking with a professional counselor at Affordable Counseling Center in Tampa FL, and Brandon FL, is an indicator of strength and determination, not weakness.


Should I worry about my anxiety? How to know when stress is more than just stress, and what to do about it at Affordable Counseling Center in Tampa FL, and Brandon FL.

Anxiety can be overwhelming.  Though we all feel stress, anxiety in Tampa FL, and Brandon FL, disorders can cause a person to become agitated, restless, or excessively worried over something others may see as small.  Anxiety can come in many forms, whether it’s

  • Feeling your heart pound and palms sweat
  • Negative self-talk
  • Avoiding social situations
  • Difficulty sleeping and calming down
  • Racing thoughts and difficulty concentrating

You may not know whether what you are feeling is typical stress, or signs of an anxiety disorder in Tampa FL, and Brandon FL, and that feeling of not knowing brings its own discomfort and additional stress.  


And when we google, we can find that there are many types of anxiety in Tampa FL, and Brandon FL, as well as other disorders in which anxiety plays a part.  If you weren’t feeling anxious before, you may feel even more anxious as you flip through online pages of diagnosis after diagnosis.  There are some online anxiety tests, and they can be helpful as a starting place to help learn more about anxiety, and to see whether it may be helpful for you to seek professional help.  However, online tests have limits.

You’re probably feeling more anxious than normal when you read through a list of symptoms or diagnoses, and that may impact how you answer the questions.  Secondly, sometimes the way things are written is not clear. For example, these quiz questions often ask about how often a symptom occurs without providing context – how often is “often” or “sometimes”? Lastly, even if an online quiz can tell you with 100% certainty that you have an anxiety disorder in Tampa FL, and Brandon FL, it may not be able to link you to treatment with a quality mental health professional, nor provide treatment recommendations that are tailored to best fit you.

Pros of Taking an Online Anxiety Test

  1. Learn basic information about anxiety.
  2. Get a starting point to understand your own emotions
  3. First easy step toward deeper self understanding
  4. Free, or low cost.

Cons of Taking an Online Anxiety Test

  1. Possible misdiagnosis
  2. General, often not validated (accurate) questions
  3. Not able to recommend appropriate treatment
  4. Difficulty understanding results
  5. Incomplete, limited results or insights

Knowing yourself is a key part of understanding how to take care of yourself, but figuring yourself out can be a complicated and uncomfortable process.  I’ll explain a few ways to get started on your own, as well as ways we can help.

Start a Journal

Often our thoughts and feelings happen so fast that we have a hard time organizing them.  Journaling is a great way to slow down our minds and put our complex thoughts, feelings, and patterns out on to paper.  It doesn’t have to follow a standard format. For some people, just simple bullet points with their thoughts and feelings about a situation can be helpful to start to see patterns.  Find a format that works for you and work to integrate it into your regular routine. This can also help you see if your anxiety in Tampa FL, and Brandon FL, tends to happen in any kind of pattern, as well as help you answer those pesky “often” and “sometimes” questions with more accuracy. When you write, reflect by asking yourself:

  • When did I start feeling this way?
  • What events today contributed to how I’m feeling now?
  • What feelings do these words communicate?
  • How much do these feelings affect my well-being, on a scale from 1-10?


What Exactly Is Happening in the Body During Fight, Flight, or Freeze? AT Affordable Counseling Center in Tampa FL, and Brandon FL.

The neuroscience behind the fight, flight, or freeze response may sound complex, but it’s basically a reinforced cycle of coding and processing threats. 

Your amygdala is the powerhouse driving the fight, flight, or freeze response. This part of the brain reacts to various stimuli and detects them as dangerous. It transmits important emotional messages to your hypothalamus, which communicates with the rest of your body via your autonomic nervous system. 

The autonomic nervous system contains two parts: the sympathetic and parasympathetic nervous systems. The sympathetic nervous system is responsible for the fight-or-flight response, and the parasympathetic nervous system creates the freeing effect. 

When these systems become activated, it’s normal to experience fluctuations in your:

  • Heart rate.
  • Ability to breathe.
  • Body temperature.
  • Tolerance to pain.

It’s normal to cycle through the fight, flight, or freeze cycle, although some people have a more dominant response. That said, it’s difficult to control how you react. In most cases, the body returns to a natural homeostasis within half an hour. 

Can Anything Go Wrong With This Response?

Sometimes your fight, flight, or freeze response can be overactive. If this is the case, your brain may automatically code certain situations as dangerous, even if they are relatively benign. 

Overactivity typically results from experiencing trauma. When we undergo a trauma in Tampa FL, and Brandon FL, our bodies work hard to protect ourselves from further danger. 

Unfortunately, the body sometimes jumps to conclusions and interprets danger even if the situation is relatively safe. For instance, if someone physically assaulted you, any scent that smells like the perpetrator may trigger the fight, flight, or freeze response. 

Anxiety in Tampa FL< and Brandon FL, may also affect how your brain detects danger. People with anxiety disorders struggle with excessive fear and worry about certain situations.

For example, if you feel anxious in social situations, you may experience an overactive stress response when making a difficult phone call. Or, if you have a phobia, you may spend a great deal of energy trying to avoid that fear from manifesting. This cycle can make doing basic tasks feel challenging. If your trauma or anxiety in Tampa FL, and Brandon FL, has impacted your well-being, therapy at Affordable Counseling Center in Tampa FL, and Brandon FL, can help. Additionally, it’s important to learn what triggers, reinforces, and reduces the activation of your fight, flight, or freeze response. 
At Affordable Counseling Center in Tampa FL, and Brandon FL, we can support you in your healing process. We are here to help you manage your stress and work through the issues affecting your mental health. Contact us today to schedule a appointment.


Coping Strategies for Depression At Affordable Counseling Center in Tampa FL, and Brandon FL.

There is a world of resources available online about depression. You are likely not lacking for information on this disorder. But having information on the disorder does not make it easy to conquer. You need a guiding hand, a shoulder to cry on, an expert in the field; Affordable Counseling Center in Tampa FL, and Brandon FL, is that partner you need. There are many different options in the treatment for depression. Medications can sometimes be helpful, as well as talk therapy, and establishing a healthy routine for your daily life. Different courses of treatment work for different ages, personalities, and genders. We understand the different needs of individuals. Affordable Counseling Center in Tampa FL, and Brandon FL, depression counselors will work you or your child to explore many different treatment options, and then usually use a combination of therapies to create success. The journey may not be easy, but you do not have to make it alone.

Depression in Tampa FL, and Brandon FL, and Brandon FL, makes even the simplest daily tasks difficult. Going to work, getting out of bed in the morning, making meals and eating, everything can be overwhelmingly painful and challenging. When your children, your spouse, your parents, or your coworkers are relying on you, you feel like you are letting everyone down. When you are struggling with depression, you may feel like everyone is out to get you, no one understands you, and your cries for help go answered. Affordable Counseling Center in Tampa FL, and Brandon FL, depression counselors offer a way out depression. We cannot guarantee a cure, but we can guarantee that we will be with you every step of the way. We know that the process seems impossible when you are the deepest depths of depression, but we want you to know that when you are ready to find the light, we are ready to help you. Change is possible.


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