5 Ways to Treat Depression
Depression affects individuals in various ways and levels of severity. Drug treatment may be necessary for patients with severe depression whereas lifestyle changes and alternative methods to balance chemicals in the brain have been found to be effective. Individuals who feel a sense of hopelessness, a loss of energy and an unwillingness to partake in daily activities should seek help from a medical professional immediately.
Psychotherapy with a trained therapist or psychologist involves expressing thoughts and feelings and adopting mindful techniques to relax and cope with depression. Some therapists use therapies such as mindfulness-based cognitive therapy involving breathing exercises, meditation and associations with feelings to help them tolerate and regulate emotions. Therapy focuses on identifying the underlying issue causing depression and working through anxiety and stress as well as feelings that promote a sense of worthlessness.
Exercise offers a healing treatment option that benefits the mind and the body. Individuals who are depressed may not feel like they have the energy to stay active, but even a 15- to 30-minute brisk walk can increase endorphins in the body, promoting positive energy and improving moods. Breathing exercises and meditation through stretching exercises such as yoga often help people experience a sense of peacefulness when suffering from depression.
Healthy Eating Habits
People who choose healthy foods may notice a change in mood and reduced symptoms of depression. Proper nutrition with a balanced diet with ample fruits and vegetables and regular meals improves overall physical and mental well-being. Many people with depression may experience a loss of appetite, but it is important to maintain healthy eating habits to battle the symptoms of the condition.
Physicians and psychologists commonly prescribe antidepressant drugs to individuals suffering from bouts of depression that do not respond to changes in lifestyle habits. Antidepressants work to transform chemical imbalances in the brain that contribute to depression, thus improving mood. The key chemicals in the brain that affect depression include dopamine, norepinephrine and serotonin. Antidepressants work to balance these chemicals that may cause symptoms of depression.
Depression is severely affected by the inner voice of a person consumed by negativity due to early life experiences, trauma or anxiety. Voice therapy targets the inner critic within the brain. Through an expression of feelings and recognition of thoughts that are contributing to depression, therapists can work with patients to retrain the brain and eliminate negative thoughts and feelings.
Treatment for depression varies depending on the severity of the symptoms and the type of depression. Some individuals respond to therapy, while others may require drug treatments to manage their symptoms. Regardless of the nature of depression, lifestyle changes and treatment are necessary to manage this condition.