Matters of the Heart Counseling Services, LLC    

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Counseling Services

Major Depressive Disorder
Major Depressive Disorder also referred to as Clinical Depression
is more than life’s “ups” and “downs.” 

It is normal to feel sad when a loved one dies, or when you are sick, going through a divorce, or having financial problems. But for some people the sadness does not go away, or keeps coming back. If your sadness lasts more than a few weeks or cause you to struggle with daily life, you may be suffering from a depressive disorder.  Major Depression is not a personal weakness or a lack of faith.  Major depression is a “whole-body” illness that affects your mood, thoughts, body and behavior.
Treatment for Depression
Medication and Psychotherapy

Depression, even the most severe cases, can be treated. The earlier that treatment can begin, the more effective it is. Depression is usually treated with medications, psychotherapy, or a combination of the two.


Antidepressants are medicines that treat depression. They may help improve the way your brain uses certain chemicals that control mood or stress.


Evidence-based psychotherapeutic approaches specific to the treatment of depression include cognitive-behavioral therapy (CBT), interpersonal therapy (IPT),
and problem-solving therapy.

Major Depressive Disorder (Clinical Depression) is a common illness that negatively affects an individual's mood.  Symptoms include:

  • Persistent sad, anxious, or “empty” mood
  • Feelings of hopelessness, or pessimism
  • Irritability
  • Feelings of guilt, worthlessness, or helplessness
  • Loss of interest or pleasure in hobbies and activities
  • Decreased energy or fatigue
  • Moving or talking more slowly
  • Feeling restless or having trouble sitting still
  • Difficulty concentrating, remembering, or making decisions
  • Difficulty sleeping, early-morning awakening, or oversleeping
  • Appetite and/or weight changes
  • Thoughts of death or suicide, or suicide attempts
  • Aches or pains, headaches, cramps, or digestive problems without a clear physical cause and/or that do not ease even with treatment

Depression and Suicide

Primary Types of Depressive Disorders

  1. Major Depressive Disorder
  2. Persistent Depressive Disorder
  3. Seasonal Affective Disorder
  4. Postpartum Depressive Disorder 
More Information:
What You Need to Know About Depression

Brochure produced by the National Institute of Mental Health (NIMH)
Depression Brief Assessment
The brief Depression Assessment is not intended to provide you with a diagnosis.  It can be used to provide you with further insight into whether you should seek counseling.  You should not use the assessment alone to make a determination.  It is just one tool to add to all the factors you can consider in deciding to seek treatment.

Assessment Source:  Mental Health America (MHA)
Depression Brief Assessment