Humanistic counselling & psychotherapy
in Brighton, Hove & Online
I specialise working with depression, anxiety and low self esteem
Premenstrual Dysphoric Disorder (PMDD)
Those suffering with PMDD know this condition leaves its mark on all areas of life. It has serious effects on relationships, it can leave you feeling lost and not able to cope at a certain point of the month.
Whilst counselling cannot cure the symptoms, as with any chronic condition, counselling can help you process the feelings that arise from the condition and the fall out from the ‘bad’ days and weeks.
I have specific training, delivered from Luna Hub, the leading support community for women suffering with PMDD. Every women’s experience is unique but there are many similarities regarding the symptoms, it can be helpful to speak with someone that has specific insight into the condition.
What are the symptoms of PMDD?
PMDD symptoms appear a week or two before menstruation and go away within a few days after your period starts. In addition to PMS symptoms, you may have:
Anger or irritability
Anxiety and panic attacks
Depression and suicidal thoughts
Fatigue and low energy.
Food cravings or binge eating
Depression is a common condition that will affect one in three people at some time in their life. It is a complicated illness with many different symptoms and causes.
Changes in eating habits, sleeping patterns and overwhelming feelings of despair are often the first signs of depression. The earlier help is sought, the better.
Many sufferers become emotionally detached from those around them and withdraw into a world of their own. This can alienate friends and relatives, increasing the sense of isolation.
Common signs of depression can include:
Changes in sleeping patterns; broken nights or over-sleeping
Changes in eating patterns: loss of appetite or overeating
Overwhelming feelings of guilt and worthlessness
Tiredness and loss of energy
Headaches, stomach upsets or chronic pain
Persistent thoughts of death or suicide
For many people depression follows a loss; the death of a loved one, redundancy, divorce or illness, or it can follow a period of stress. Grief and sadness are natural responses to such loss but depression is an illness and has major differences which can be difficult to spot.
Counselling can help you to understand depression and its triggers. It allows you the space and time to explore how you feel and how best you can manage the condition.
A quarter of the population will suffer from anxiety at some time in their lives and whilst it is normal and healthy to feel sad or worried about life and its pressures, when worry dominates everyday life you may be suffering from anxiety.
For many people anxiety is a fear with no subject, just an overwhelming disabling worry which dominates their life. It often becomes more powerful and the sufferer becomes anxious about being anxious. Behaviour is dominated by the anxiety and can lead the individual to withdraw from social contact. This can affect their partner, family, friends and colleagues.
Common signs of anxiety can include:
Changes in appetite
Lack of sleep
Loss of energy
Loss of concentration
Headaches and dizziness
Physical pain and loss of control including shaking and sweating
Anxiety is a problem which feeds on itself and is often covered up and dealt with in isolation. Help should be sought as soon as possible. Counselling may help you to face your fears and rebuild self-esteem. Sometimes understanding where an anxiety originated can help realise a new perspective.
Counselling can help you confront fears, manage and understand panic attacks, define and override your most common anxieties and understand your own limits and triggers for anxiety and stress
Survivors of Sexual Abuse and violence
Recovering from sexual assault and beginning to process the trauma of sexual abuse requires time and compassion. The healing process can be painful and littered with confusing emotions such as guilt and shame. It is possible to regain your sense of control and rebuild your self-worth, and lean to heal.
The trauma of being raped or sexually assaulted is shattering, leaving people scared and alone. Many survivors develop PTSD or complex PTSD. The world no longer feels safe.
It's important to remember that what you're experiencing is a normal reaction to trauma. Your feelings of helplessness, shame and self-blame are symptoms of trauma. Counselling can help you regain a sense of safety and control. Exploring the internal narrative and the beliefs that surround the assault or abuse can help separate our intellectual understanding from our internal experience.
Working with trauma is a lengthy process. It is vital to tread softly and go slowly so that you do not become re-traumatised.
Continuing Professional Development
I am passionate and fascinated with the human condition so I regularly partake in further training courses which has given me the opportunity to gain specialist knowledge in certain topics. I have attended courses covering the following topics: eating disorders, trauma, working with children, Transactional Analysis (TA), sand tray, art therapy, sexuality and counselling, spirituality and counselling.
I will also continue to attend courses that will target specific client issues in order to expand my knowledge and improve my understanding.
Feel free to ask if you would like further details.