Adult and Child Psychiatrist located in Lancaster, PA


Depression is a serious mood disorder that affects more than 16 million adults every year and hinders their ability to perform daily activities like working, eating, and sleeping. Board-certified adult and child psychiatrist Sarah Gatumu, MD, of New Direction Functional Psychiatry in Lancaster, Pennsylvania, specializes in treating patients with depression using psychotherapy to address symptoms and their causes. To start treatment today, call the office, or use the online scheduling tool to make an appointment. 

Depression Q & A

What is depression?

Depression is a mood disorder that causes feelings of sadness and a loss of interest in everything around you. Clinical depression affects the way you think, feel, and behave, and leads to a range of emotional and physical problems. 

Depression isn’t just feeling blue and being unable to snap out of it. But most patients benefit from psychotherapy that helps them understand and work through their depression.

What are the symptoms of depression?

Depression causes you to feel unhappy without knowing why. As a result, your productivity at work, your relationships with others, and your physical health go into decline. Along with a persistent feeling of sadness that you can’t shake off, you may also experience some of the following symptoms:

  • Feelings of emptiness and hopelessness
  • Angry outbursts and irritability
  • Inability to regulate emotions
  • Loss of interest in everything 
  • Insomnia or disturbed sleep
  • Fatigue
  • Anxiety
  • Reduced appetite
  • Feelings of guilt and worthlessness
  • Thoughts of death or suicide

Patients don’t experience all symptoms at once, but if you have these feelings for more than two weeks, get counseling at New Direction Functional Psychiatry.

What causes depression?

As with many mental disorders, the exact causes of depression are unknown, but there are many factors that can increase your chances of having it:


Some patients are more prone to depression because of their genetic makeup. 


Large hormonal changes often trigger depression like during pregnancy or menopause.


Traumatic events, especially if experienced as a child, are known to trigger depression in some patients.

Often it’s a combination of factors that cause your depression, but the practice is experienced in helping patients discover the root causes of their illness in order to address their symptoms.

How do you treat depression?

Using evidence-based therapy, the practice creates customized treatment plans based on an individual patient’s needs. The practice uses cognitive behavioral therapy (CBT), a type of talk therapy, to treat depression in patients, TMS, ketamine therapy, and the holistic optimization of micronutrients to help your body heal. In addition to medication management and therapy, the practice utilized gene site testing to make sure your plan is the best for you. 

During your sessions, your provider works with you to identify negative thought patterns and replace them with healthier ones. Doing this changes your attitude, which leads to changes in your behavior.

After a few weeks or months, the changes in your outlook and behavioral habits help ease your feelings of depression. Beyond talk therapy, your provider may also suggest some small lifestyle changes like being more active, keeping a journal, and spending less time alone.

If you are suffering from an unexplained sadness or feelings of worthlessness, call the office, or use the online scheduling tool to make an appointment to get counseling today.