Throughout my career, I’ve been incredibly fortunate to have had many meaningful conversations with our CHS team members about the importance of counseling in the lives of the children and families we serve. While every journey is unique, there is often a common thread …the trace of a struggle to overcome past trauma.
The journeys vary. Sometimes it’s a mom having trouble maintaining employment. Other times, a dad repeating the cycle of abuse in his family, unsure how break the cycle. Now and then, a child or teen skipping school for reasons his parents can’t imagine.
Every year, our more than 200 trauma-informed counselors throughout Florida serve more than 12,000 children and family members each year. Their mission? To listen and understand…to peel back the past and uncover unknown intentions. Every situation, every journey, every person is unique. It is only from listening that we’re able to develop treatment goals to help the individual rewrite their next steps… realize their full potential.
The process begins with recognizing when counseling is needed.
While tough, it is the most important step. When considering if treatment is appropriate for the family you’re serving, consider signs and symptoms for two common conditions our team helps individuals and families work through—anxiety and depression.
- Anxiety can cause people to try to avoid situations that trigger or worsen their symptoms. Job performance, school work and personal relationships can be affected.
- Anxiety is the most common mental disorder and affects 30% of adults at some point in their lives.
- Though both genders are affected, women are more likely than men to develop anxiety.
- For a person to be diagnosed with an anxiety disorder, the fear or anxiety must be out of proportion to the situation or age inappropriate OR hinder an individual’s ability to function normally.
- The cause of anxiety is currently unknown but likely involve a combination of factors including genetic, environmental, psychological and developmental.
- Although counseling professionals are able to work with individuals to develop the most appropriate treatments, unfortunately, many people with anxiety don’t seek help.
Some possible symptoms include*:
- Excessive worry of public speaking, meeting with people or eating/drinking in public
- Consistent worry about losing a person closest to him or her
- Restlessness or feeling on-edge
- Easily fatigued
- Difficulty concentrating
- Muscle tension
- Problems sleeping
- Depression negatively affects how you feel, the way you think and how you act.
- Depression causes feelings of sadness and/or loss of interest in activities once enjoyed.
- Symptoms of depression must last at least two weeks for a clear diagnosis.
- Depression can affect anyone, even individuals who appear to live in relatively ideal circumstances.
- Depression is among the most treatable mental health hurdles.
Some possible symptoms include*:
- Feeling sad or having a depressed mood
- Loss of interest or pleasure in activities you once enjoyed
- Changes in appetite—weight loss or gain unrelated to dieting
- Trouble sleeping or sleeping too much
- Loss of energy or increased fatigue
- Feeling worthless or guilty
- Difficulty thinking, concentrating or making decisions
- Thoughts of death or suicide
To reduce symptoms of depression, many people take part in regular exercise, quality sleep, a healthy diet, avoiding alcohol or counseling services.
To make an easy online referral, visit www.chsfl.org/counseling. Our CHS counseling team members contact families directly to share additional information and arrange their first appointments. And with our newly expanded service locations—including telehealth, in-home and in school—services have never been more convenient. In fact, most appointments are arranged within two weeks.
So, what are you waiting for? Partner with CHS Counseling today. Together, we’ll help those we serve unthread the trauma of their past so they may realize their full potential.
*Symptoms and quick facts sourced from www.psychiatry.org/patients-families. Those diagnosed may have some of the symptoms listed, all of them or completely different symptoms. If you have concerns that you may have anxiety or depression, it’s best to talk to a professional through a counseling program or EAP services. This blog post is not meant to be a diagnostic tool.