Exercise Is Something You Can Do Right Now To Boost Your Mood
Your fatigue will improve if you stick with it. Starting to exercise can be difficult when youre depressed and feeling exhausted. But research shows that your energy levels will improve if you keep with it. Exercise will help you to feel energized and less fatigued, not more.
Find exercises that are continuous and rhythmic. The most benefits for depression come from rhythmic exercisesuch as walking, weight training, swimming, martial arts, or dancingwhere you move both your arms and legs.
Add a mindfulness element, especially if your depression is rooted in unresolved trauma or fed by obsessive, negative thoughts. Focus on how your body feels as you movesuch as the sensation of your feet hitting the ground, or the feeling of the wind on your skin, or the rhythm of your breathing.
Pair up with an exercise partner. Not only does working out with others enable you to spend time socializing, it can also help to keep you motivated. Try joining a running club, taking a water aerobics or dance class, seeking out tennis partners, or enrolling in a soccer or volleyball league.
Take a dog for a walk.If you dont own a dog, you can volunteer to walk homeless dogs for an animal shelter or rescue group. Youll not only be helping yourself but also be helping to socialize and exercise the dogs, making them more adoptable.
Create A Peace Corner
A peace corner is easy to set up and can be a place to go in your own home that relaxes you when you need a break. Its purpose is to provide a peaceful zone filled with things that bring you positivity.
Inspired by the Montessori method of teaching, peace corners arent just for kids they can be whatever you want them to be.
Find an area of your home you can fill with comforting items such as plants, stress balls, soft pillows, a yoga mat, candles, and books. You can spend time there each day or just when youre having a hard time managing your depression symptoms.
boost levels of serotonin , a neurotransmitter in the brain that regulates mood. If your serotonin levels arent where they should be, you can experience symptoms of depression.
Be sure to check in with a mental health professional about whether a lightbox is suitable for you.
Volunteering Can Be A Great Way To Do Both
Knock out a few birds with one stone spending time with other people and doing something new by volunteering and giving your time to someone or something else.
You may be used to receiving help from friends, but reaching out and providing help may actually improve your mental health more.
Bonus: People who volunteer experience physical benefits, too. This includes a
Also Check: How Do You Know If Your Going Thru Depression
When To Get Professional Help For Depression
If youve taken self-help steps and made positive lifestyle changes and still find your depression getting worse, seek professional help. Needing additional help doesnt mean youre weak. Sometimes the negative thinking in depression can make you feel like youre a lost cause, but depression can be treated and you can feel better!
Dont forget about these self-help tips, though. Even if youre receiving professional help, these tips can be part of your treatment plan, speeding your recovery and preventing depression from returning.
Getting Out Of A Funk: How To Help Yourself Through Depression
Everyone has off days where they feel tired, irritable, and sad. Its normal to feel sadness as a response to challenging life events, loss, or changes, but sometimes these feelings can stick around for a while if left unaddressed and make it difficult for you to get through each day.
Heres how you can tell when youre in a funk or maybe even experiencing a mild depression as well as what you can do to help yourself feel better.
You May Like: Depression In Women’s Health
What Do I Do If Self
If youve tried the depression self-help strategies above but your symptoms are still overwhelming, go and see your GP or a mental health professional for additional depression help.
Your GP will have suggestions for alternative things you can try to help manage your depression from day to day, and will be able to assess what to do next. Treatments such as psychological therapy and medication, and having a good relationship with a GP, psychologist and/or psychiatrist, can be effective in treating depression and improving mood.
Take Care Of Your Body
A healthy body can help you manage stress. Get 7 to 9 hours of sleep, eat healthy food, stay hydrated and exercise regularly. Go easy on the caffeine. Shorting yourself on sleep, and especially pulling an all-nighter, robs you of energy and your ability to concentrate. A healthy diet improves your ability to learn. Don’t skip breakfast.
Don’t Miss: How Do I Come Out Of Depression
Depression Statistics: Disturbing Trends Helpful Treatment
Unfortunately, there are plenty of people who, like Kashuk, know exactly what it means to be depressed. An estimated 17.3 million, or 7 percent, of adults in the United States had at least one major depressive episode in the past year, according to the National Institute of Mental Health, making it one of the most common mental illnesses in the United States.
Whats more, a recent report from Mental Health America, a nonprofit founded in 1909, offers startling statistics pertaining to one of depression’s most disturbing symptoms: thoughts of suicide.
According to its 2021 State of Mental Health in America report, suicidal ideation among adults increased by 0.15 percent between the 2016-2017 calendar year and the 2017-2018 calendar year, the most recent years for which statistics are available.
There is a bright side. Although there is no one-size-fits-all cure for depression, there are many effective treatment options, one of which is bound to help you heal if youre struggling with the illness. This cannot be emphasized enough, given that roughly two-thirds of people living with depression do not receive the care they need, according to a report in the journal Neuropsychiatric Disease and Treatment, published online February 22, 2019.
Surround Yourself With Positivity
When your mental state is bringing you down, it’s easy to feel even worse by surrounding yourself with negative people and content.
Turn off that murder show on Netflix and put on something to help you laugh. Avoid your pessimistic friends and opt this week to hang out with the ones you can count on to be positive. When I’m sad, I like to listen to depressing music which always makes me feel even sadder. To help get my productivity and spark back, I’ll put on an upbeat tune and try to sing it lift my mood. Even though it’s hard, try to remove any negative triggers that might bring you and your business down.
While feeling sad, depressed or anxious may feel like a black hole, there is a light at the end of the tunnel. Doing something creative or surrounding yourself with positivity won’t cure you instantly, but it will help you find your way towards the light.
Don’t Miss: Iop For Anxiety And Depression
How Can I Take Care Of Myself
Once you begin treatment, you should gradually start to feel better. Go easy on yourself during this time. Try to do things you used to enjoy. Even if you dont feel like doing them, they can improve your mood. Other things that may help:
- Try to get some physical activity. Just 30 minutes a day of walking can boost mood.
- Try to maintain a regular bedtime and wake-up time.
- Eat regular, healthy meals.
- Do what you can as you can. Decide what must get done and what can wait.
- Try to connect with other people, and talk with people you trust about how you are feeling.
- Postpone important life decisions until you feel better.
- Avoid using alcohol, nicotine, or drugs, including medications not prescribed for you.
Causes And Risk Factors
Depression is not a mood you can just get over. It is a disease in which the brain ceases to register pleasurable activities, says Angelino. Indeed, MRI studies with depressed people have found changes in the parts of the brain that play a significant role in depression.
Women are about twice as likely as men to be diagnosed with depression. Youre also more likely to develop depression if you are between ages 45 and 64, nonwhite, or divorced, and if you never graduated high school, cant work or are unemployed, and dont have health insurance. Other risks for depression include factors such as these:
- Experiencing stressful events in your life, such as losing your job, having problems in your marriage, major health problems, and/or financial challenges.
- Having a bad childhood, such as one involving abuse, poor relationships with your parents, and/or your parents own marital problems.
- Certain personality traits, such as getting extremely upset when youre stressed.
- A family history of depression, which can increase your own risk three or four times.
Depression is far more common than you might think, with nearly one out of 10 adults depressed at any time, about half of them severely.
Don’t Miss: Is Celebrex Used For Depression
Alternative Herbs And Supplements For Sad:
According to an article published in the Journal of Affective Disorders: Rhodiola rosea, chromium, 5-HTP, and inositol supplementation may act as natural anti-depressants.
Chromium has specifically been suggested to support seasonal affective disorder .
As mentioned earlier, St. Johns Wort may be helpful for depression as it is thought to support serotonin production. Kava is a lesser known and controversial root that may help with generalized anxiety .
Track Triggers And Symptoms
Keeping track of moods and symptoms might help a person understand what triggers a depressive episode. Spotting the signs of depression early on may help them avoid a full-blown depressive episode.
Use a diary to log important events, changes to daily routines, and moods. Rate moods on a scale of 1 to 10 to help identify which events or activities cause specific responses. See a doctor if symptoms persist for 14 days or more.
Don’t Miss: What Can I Take For My Depression
How Is Depression Treated
Depression treatment typically involves medication, psychotherapy, or both. If these treatments do not reduce symptoms, brain stimulation therapy may be another treatment option. In milder cases of depression, treatment might begin with psychotherapy alone, and medication added if the individual continues to experience symptoms. For moderate or severe depression, many mental health professionals recommend a combination of medication and therapy at the start of treatment.
Choosing the right treatment plan should be based on a persons individual needs and medical situation under a providers care. It may take some trial and error to find the treatment that works best for you. You can learn more about the different types of treatment, including psychotherapy, medication, and brain stimulation therapies on the NIMH’s depression webpage. For information on finding a mental health professional and questions to ask when considering therapy, visit NIMHs psychotherapies webpage.
Do Something You Enjoy
Depression can push you to give in to your fatigue. It may feel more powerful than preferred emotions.
Try to push back and do something you love something thats pleasurable or meaningful. It could be playing an instrument, painting, hiking, or biking.
The byproduct of engaging in meaningful activities can be a lift in your mood or energy, which can further motivate you to continue to engage in helpful activities that help with navigating symptoms.
Research suggests that walks in nature may improve depressive symptoms in people with clinical depression.
Time in natural spaces may improve mood and cognition, and lower the risk of mental health disorders. However, theres only limited research on the direct effect of nature on those with clinical depression.
Consider taking a walk at lunch among the trees or spending some time in your local park. Or plan a weekend hike. These activities can help you reconnect with nature and soak in some rays at the same time.
Don’t Miss: Vitamin D For Seasonal Depression
I Engage All Of My Senses
I tend to get trapped in my own thoughts and feelings.
In therapy, Iâve learned how to use my senses of sight, touch, taste, smell, and sound to shift my focus. Each of my five senses is important and engages different parts of my brain, and affects my mood. The simple act of feeding my senses brings me back into the present moment, making me feel more safe and grounded.
I look outside â and really look â at the beauty of the trees and sky. I listen to music, which can soothe or energize me, depending on what I need to hear. I try new recipes so that I can experience different flavors and engage my sense of taste. I use touch to calm down by petting my dog. When I wash the dishes, I focus on how the water and soap feel on my hands. I love using essential oils to cope with anxiety â I carry a bottle of lavender oil in my purse and if I begin to feel afraid or unsettled, I pull it out and breathe in the aroma 10 times.
How To Fight Depression Without Medication
Verywell / Bailey Mariner
For many people living with depression, prescription medications can be life-saving drugs. Antidepressants, such as selective serotonin reuptake inhibitors like Prozac and Zoloft , are the most widely prescribed medication for depression, and while they are often effective, they can have side effects and be expensive depending on your health insurance coverage.
There are many ways to counter some of the symptoms of depression that don’t involve prescription medications. If you have depression, you might like to try managing it naturally without medication or supplement your antidepressant with other options. If so, check out these natural alternatives and then talk to your doctor about which might make sense as part of your treatment regimen.
This article discusses some natural treatments that may help fight depression including lifestyle changes and supplements. It also covers other strategies you might try such as practicing mindfulness or enhancing your home environment.
You May Like: Is Procrastination A Sign Of Depression
Visualize A Happy Memory
When a patient continually revisits a painful memory , it can tip him or her into near emotional catatonia. I say, Wait, before you go down the rabbit hole and all the dark feelings overwhelm you, close your eyes and go to a happy memory. *Paul remembered, When I graduated from college, looked out at the audience and saw my family looking so proud, I felt amazing and powerful. I said, Great, go there. Lets relive that wonderful experience.
As he described details from that lovely day his posture went from slumped over to peacock proud. He actually smiled. I suggested, The moment you feel yourself sliding back to an awful memory that takes you under, take a breath and instantly conjure up graduation day. Counter the gloom with an immediate dose of positivity!
Does Testosterone Contribute To Men’s Postpartum Depression
Though easier said than done, the times you feel most like slumping on the couch are the moments you should force yourself to take a walk, cook a meal, or call a friend. If you’ve ever been depressed before, do whatever it was that helped you feel better before. Coping strategies that have worked for you in the past are a great place to start. Activities that help you calm down and that raise your spirits are important, even simple things like baking brownies, taking a bath, or listening to upbeat music. Act against the critical inner voice that tells you nothing will help. Remember its only purpose is to keep you from feeling better.
Don’t Miss: Mental Health Services For Depression
Add Greenery To Your Home Or Office
You may also find it helpful to add indoor plants to your home or office environment. Natural settings are associated with improved mental well-being, so it makes sense that “bringing the outdoors in” might help improve your mood.
Studies have shown that adding indoor plants to your home or office can help in a variety of ways, including:
- Improving the workplace: Research has shown that office spaces enhanced with indoor plants improve worker concentration and workplace satisfaction.
- Reducing stress levels: Another study found that actively interacting with indoor plans by caring for them can reduce both physiological and psychological stress.
- : Research has found that students who spent most of their time at home during the COVID-19 pandemic had better mental health if they were exposed to more green plants. While about a third of the participants reported symptoms of moderate depression, those exposed to more greenery had lower levels of depression and anxiety.
Choosing certain plants may provide additional benefits. For example, research suggests that the scent of a lavender plant can help people feel calmer and more relaxed. No matter what type of plants you choose, greenery can be a great way to beautify your surroundings and potentially improve your mood.
Encouraging The Person To Get Help
While you cant control someone elses recovery from depression, you can start by encouraging the depressed person to seek help. Getting a depressed person into treatment can be difficult. Depression saps energy and motivation, so even the act of making an appointment or finding a doctor can seem daunting to your loved one. Depression also involves negative ways of thinking. The depressed person may believe that the situation is hopeless and treatment pointless.
Because of these obstacles, getting your loved one to admit to the problemand helping them see that it can be solvedis an essential step in depression recovery.
If your friend or family member resists getting help:
Suggest a general check-up with a physician. Your loved one may be less anxious about seeing a family doctor than a mental health professional. A regular doctors visit is actually a great option, since the doctor can rule out medical causes of depression. If the doctor diagnoses depression, they can refer your loved one to a psychiatrist or psychologist. Sometimes, this professional opinion makes all the difference.
Offer to help the depressed person find a doctor or therapist and go with them on the first visit.Finding the right treatment provider can be difficult, and is often a trial-and-error process. For a depressed person already low on energy, it is a huge help to have assistance making calls and looking into the options.
Read Also: What Will Help My Depression