Depression and Anxiety in Adults 

What does depression and anxiety look like for adults?

“You don’t have to control your thoughts. You just have to stop letting them control you.” ~Dan Millman

Depression and anxiety are incredibly common mental health disorders in adults, with 6.9% of US adults experiencing at least one depressive episode in the year and 18.1% of adults experiencing an anxiety disorder in the year (DSM-5; Mental Health by the Numbers, 2017). 

Although many experience depression and anxiety, often people feel uncomfortable seeking professional help. At Variations Psychology, we help normalize feelings of sadness, worry, and loss while enhancing your ability to take charge of your life. 

Although depression and anxiety can occur independently and have symptoms unique to each, many people struggle with both.  Research suggests that around 85% of those who had depression also struggle with anxiety, and 90% of those who had anxiety also having symptoms of depression (Möller, et al., 2016). These symptoms can be life-altering and emotionally exhausting, resulting in significant loss of functioning in work, school, and relationships.  

If you believe that you or a loved one has difficulties related to depression or anxiety, contact the team at Variations Psychology today.  Continue reading to learn more about these issues and how they are treated.  


“Depression” is a word many people use to describe general feelings of sadness, yet true depression tends to be much deeper.  Adults who struggle with depression tend notice an onset of symptoms after some sort of loss, such as the loss of a job or a significant relationship.  However, depression can also emerge gradually over time, which is why as many as 1 in 4 adults will meet criteria for a depressive disorder in their lifetime (DSM-5).  

Symptoms of a depressive disorder may include (DSM-5):

  • Depressed mood most of the time (feelings of sadness, emptiness, hopelessness)
  • Decreased ability to focus or think
  • Fatigue or diminished energy
  • Irritability or anger
  • Sleep issues (too much sleep, not enough sleep)
  • Loss of interest and pleasure
  • Appetite changes (overeating, decreased appetite)
  • Reoccurring thoughts of death and suicide
  • If you or a loved one is experiencing thoughts of suicide, contact the National Suicide Hotline at 1-800-273-8255, or call 911 for immediate support

Depression can appear differently depending on age and gender, but pervasive sadness is usually the most easily identifiable symptom (DSM-5; Anxiety and Depression Association of America, 2017).  Depressive symptoms can sap energy, decrease motivation, and disempower otherwise healthy and functional adults.  Therapy can give you the tools to cope with depressive symptoms in a focused, non-judgmental environment.  At Variations Psychology, our team of licensed professionals can help you find solutions, take back control, and feel healthy again.


Anxiety is marked by the intense and pervasive feelings of worry and fear that are out of proportion to the situation. These feelings can be incredibly challenging to control, often making adults feel helpless and disempowered with their anxiety (DSM-5; Mayo Clinic, 2017). 

Symptoms of an anxiety disorder may include (DSM-5):

  • Excessive worry or anxiety most of the time
  • The worry is difficult to control
  • Fatigue or tiredness
  • Muscle tension or soreness
  • Restlessness or agitation
  • Sleep disturbance (too much sleep, not enough sleep)
  • Difficulty concentrating
  • Racing thoughts

There are many different types anxiety disorders, but each carries a theme of exaggerated or overwhelming fear that occurs at an inappropriate time.  Anxiety also has physical symptoms, such as racing heart, sweating, and irregular breathing. Panic attacks, for example, involve intense fear and discomfort peaks quickly within minutes and causes powerful symptoms of trembling, chest pain, fear of dying, and loss of control following a particular trigger of anxiety. 

Therapy can be effective in re-teaching your brain how to handle fear and anxiety-producing triggers.  At Variations Psychology, we can give you answers for overcoming anxiety and living the life you deserve.  

How Can Variations Psychology Help?

Depression and anxiety can be challenging to deal with, but you do not have to do this alone. The team at Variations Psychology wants to help you regain control and live more fully.  If you live in the Newport Beach area and would like help with anxiety or depression, contact us today!

The Variations team is composed of specialists in the areas of Clinical Psychology, School and Educational Psychology, Child Development, and Psychological and Educational Testing. The experience and training of the team hosts a group of professionals that are ready to connect with you and provide specialized services tailored to your needs. These include individual therapy, family therapy, play therapy, IEP consultation, and psychological assessment.  

Within the therapy domain, we have providers who specialize in women’s issues, parent-child interactions, child development, and education. We tailor treatment to what you need and what you are hoping to improve as a result of therapy. 

At Variations, we believe you have the tools to change your life. Our team of licensed professionals strives to empower, encourage, and motivate you towards a healthier, better life.

Schedule an appointment with one of our specialists today! We are eager to connect with you. 

Interested in Therapy? Connect with Us!

If you are interested in therapy services, please contact us. We would love to talk with you and discuss what therapy could look like for you. 

Schedule an appointment with one of our specialists today!

More about Variations Psychology

Do you want to know more about us?

Take a look at our Specialists page and learn more about what we do. 

We are based in Newport Beach, California and love to connect with our community. We cannot wait to meet you. 


American Psychiatric Association. (2013). Diagnostic and statistical manual of mental

disorders (5th ed.). Arlington, VA: American Psychiatric Publishing.

Anxiety. (2017). Mayo Clinic. 

Depression. (2017). Anxiety and Depression Association of America. 

Mental Health by the Numbers. (2017). National Alliance on Mental Illness. 

Möller, H., Bandelow, B., Volz, H., Barnikol, U. B., Seifritz, E., & Kasper, S. (2016). The relevance of ‘mixed anxiety and depression’ as a diagnostic category in clinical practice. European Archives of Psychiatry & Clinical Neuroscience, 266, 725-736.