Suicide is the 2nd leading cause of death among college students.
If you are concerned or know a UC Davis student who you are concerned about, SHCS has counseling services and a 24-hour phone response 530-752-2349.

Overview of Depression

Often, suicide is the result of severe depression. While depression is a highly treatable condition, 2 out of 3 depressed college students never seek treatment.

Everyone feels sad or blue sometimes. The loss of someone close, a romantic breakup, family problems, or an academic or work setback are some of the events that can lead to feelings of sadness or grief. Depression is qualitatively and quantitatively different from a normal reaction to setbacks and disappointments. Depression lasts longer and is generally more pervasive than normal feelings of sadness. Thoughts of suicide are virtually never part of a normal grief reaction.

Signs of Major Depression

A central feature of depression is feeling down or experiencing a loss of interest or pleasure in normally satisfying activities. When this is combined with the following signs, the person may be experiencing an episode of major depression.

  • Feeling sad, hopeless, worthless and/or excessively guilty
  • Significant weight loss when not dieting or weight gain OR decrease or increase in appetite
  • Sleeping too little or too much
  • Difficulty concentrating, remembering things, or making decisions
  • Frequent thoughts of death or planning or attempting suicide

Other forms of depression include dysthymia, adjustment problems, and grief or bereavement.

What Can Be Done

Having a social support network, people that you can confide in and rely on. Good self-care skills, including allowing time to relax, sleeping enough, exercising, eating properly, and limiting alcohol and caffeine intake, can also help.

Since depression and dysthymia can interfere with clear thinking, it is important to involve others. Don’t try to deal with depression alone. Sometimes people hesitate to seek mental health treatment because they are afraid of social stigma, confidentiality, hopelessness, or because of a misunderstanding of the problem. Treatment can make a difference by reducing the length and severity of a depression. Sometimes, treatment for depression combines psychotherapy with antidepressant medication.

How We Can Help

SHCS Counseling Services provides brief individual therapy, group therapy, and offers referrals for ongoing therapy. Please see our website’s detailed listing of groups and workshops that may be particularly helpful to you. Additionally, you may benefit from utilizing relaxation resources such as using the biofeedback computer, audio relaxation and meditation rooms, and automatic massage chairs.

  • If you would like to be seen by our medical staff, please contact our Appointment Desk to schedule an appointment.
  • Also, our Advice Nurse service is available at no charge for all UC Davis students to discuss health concerns and the need for medical care.
  • SHCS Counseling Services has many services available to deal with depression.