Depression

While many people may experience low mood or sadness occasionally, depression tends to be ongoing, lasting anywhere from several weeks to years. We are here to help you.

Caregiver talking to patient

If you have depression, it is important to know you are not alone. About one in four people are affected by depression.

Our qualified health professionals are available to provide information, support and encouragement to help you learn to better manage your depression.

What is depression?

Depression takes away your enjoyment of life and feelings of pleasure. It can change the way you go about the most basic day-to-day activities and can affect your appetite and sleeping patterns.

It can leave you feeling worthless and simply unable to get yourself going. You may even have thoughts of suicide.

What are the signs of depression?

With depression, you may experience:

  • low moods, feeling sad or a lack of motivation
  • a marked loss of pleasure, which can impact the way you go about your day-to-day activities
  • negative changes to your appetite and sleeping patterns
  • feelings of worthlessness and even thoughts of suicide.  

How can treatment help?

If depression is effecting you and preventing you from enjoying life, you may be referred for treatment. Working through depression isn’t easy, and it’s different for everybody. With support and active participation, treatment can make a big difference to how you live.

Our depression program

We provide programs in a friendly, safe and caring environment in collaboration with psychologists, psychiatrists, nurses and allied health professionals.

Our programs are evidence-based which means they are based on the highest standards of clinical practice and research.

We put you at the centre of our care and, where appropriate, encourage family and careers to be a part of your support network.

Our approach to depression treatment

Our inpatient and outpatient programs are based on cognitive behavioural therapy (CBT), which has been shown to be a highly effective treatment for depression.

CBT helps to change how we think and how our thoughts affect the way we react emotionally and behaviourally.

Topics covered as part of the program may include:

  • understanding what depression is and its causes
  • overcoming lack of motivation and lethargy
  • making positive change through a balanced lifestyle
  • an introduction to mindfulness
  • how to recognise patterns of thinking and challenging negative thinking
  • understanding how depression affects self-worth and leads to self-blame or feelings of guilt
  • developing awareness of core beliefs and challenging these effectively
  • relapse prevention.

Our inpatient programs are designed to give you the time and space you need to understand your symptoms and feel more in control. Your general practitioner or psychiatrist will refer you to the program as an inpatient if this is appropriate for you, and you will usually stay for up to 21 days.

Cognitive behaviour therapy is the mainstay of treatment for most patients. For inpatients, we also offer repetitive transcranial magnetic stimulation (TMS). This is a safe and painless treatment used when other approaches, including anti-depressants, haven’t brought the improvements hoped for.

Our outpatient programs offer you the chance to recover while continuing your everyday lifestyle. These group day programs can be an interim step before live-in treatment or can provide continued support in the transitional period afterwards – to help consolidate improvements and prevent relapse.

Benefits of treatment for depression

  • A better understanding of depression.
  • Strategies to help you manage low moods and lack of motivation.
  • Developing an understanding of negative thinking patterns and how these can affect your behaviour.
  • Relapse prevention and how to manage your depression effectively.

These benefits depend on your particular circumstances and require your full participation. You should consult a specialist in this area before deciding whether treatment is suitable for you.

Access to programs

We provide group programs. Your referring doctor will refer you to the program that best suits your needs.

If you are thinking about suicide or experiencing a crisis, help is available. Call Lifeline on 13 11 14.