Depression is a common outcome of experiencing trauma. If negative thoughts and feelings of sadness persist, participation in everyday activities like going to work, seeing friends, even getting out of bed can become hard. If this is how you are feeling, you may have developed depression. Depression is a common mental health problem, with one in five Australians experiencing it at least once in their lives.

Treatment options: Depression

Effective treatments for depression are available including counselling, medication, or a combination of both.


The most effective treatment for depression is a counselling approach known as Cognitive Behavioural Therapy (CBT). During CBT treatment, you will learn how your thoughts (how you think) (and actions) (what you do) can lead to you feeling depressed.

CBT helps you tackle the two main problems that stop you from feeling better:

  • Being unable to do the things you used to enjoy and that give meaning to your life.
  • Having unhelpful views about yourself, other people and the world around you.

How will CBT help me?

During your counselling sessions, you will learn how to:

  • Recognise your unhelpful thoughts that are making you feel depressed.
  • Challenge your thoughts so you can get a more balanced view of yourself, other people, and your daily life experiences.
  • Develop confidence in managing the day-to-day stresses that get you down.
  • Get back to doing the things that you enjoy and into a regular routine of activities.
  • Use a range of different strategies to help manage your mood.

Interpersonal Therapy (IPT) is another approach that is effective in helping people manage their depression. IPT helps you understand how the way you communicate and connect with other people in your life (work, family, friends and others) might contribute to your depression. IPT aims to reduce the symptoms of depression by teaching you skills to better manage your relationships with others.


In some cases, CBT or IPT might be combined with anti-depressant medication to help you manage your feelings. If you choose not to have counselling, or a CBT or IPT counsellor is not available for you to see, you may be prescribed anti-depressant medication on its own.


For urgent support
call Lifeline on

Call 13 11 14

Confidential 24/7
counselling and referrals

Lifeline website