Thursday, April 18, 2024

How To Help Myself With Depression

Exercise Is Something You Can Do Right Now To Boost Your Mood

I have depression – how can I help myself?

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.

Be Aware Of Your Feelings

Feeling depressed is an uncomfortable feeling, and often we tend to push negative emotions away. We understand how difficult these feelings are to cope with, but understanding your emotions can be a big help when coping with depression.

Take the time to recognise and think about your feelings, as they might help you to understand the source of what is making you feel depressed. Depression is often linked to events in the past, and sometimes there can be no explanation at all. Either way, becoming aware of these things is part of coping with depression.

Once you have a better understanding of why you feel depressed, you can take steps towards rectifying the issue and improving your overall wellbeing.

“It is not weakness to ask for help. In fact, it is one of the bravest things that any of us can do.”

What Can I Do To Help Myself If I Feel Depressed

Depression is a serious but treatable illness. See your doctor and get help for recovery. It’s always a good idea to get a physical exam in order to rule out other possible causes of the symptoms. You should tell your doctor that you think it might be depression, so that he or she can ask you the right questions and come to the most accurate diagnosis. Therapy is also very important. Many studies have shown that the most effective way to fight depression includes a combination of medication, psychotherapy, and self-care.

Self-education is an important part of self-care. One of the features of depression is that it distorts thinking. Everyone who has depression should learn as much as they can about the disorder. This achieves three things:

  • It will allow you to understand the disorder better.
  • It will underline the fact that these are very real medical disorders and will help to fight prejudice and stigma.
  • It will give you knowledge and tools that you can use to help yourself.

Here are some other ways that you can help to take care of yourself, prevent relapse and maintain wellness:

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Improve Your Sleep Hygiene

Sleep and mood are intimately related. A 2014 study found that 80% of people with major depressive disorder experience sleep disturbances.

But, you might feel like you just can’t fall asleep. Or perhaps you struggle to get out of bed because you feel exhausted all the time.

Good sleep hygiene could be key to improving the quality and quantity of your sleep.

Turn off electronics at least an hour before you go to bed. Use dim light to read a book or engage in another relaxing activity.

Only use your bed for sleep and sexual activity. Doing work in bed, or even in your bedroom, can cause you to associate your bed with stress, rather than relaxation.

Coping With Depression Tip : Reach Out And Stay Connected

52 Short Depression Quotes about Life with Images

Getting support plays an essential role in overcoming depression. On your own, it can be difficult to maintain a healthy perspective and sustain the effort required to beat depression. At the same time, the very nature of depression makes it difficult to reach out for help. When youre depressed, the tendency is to withdraw and isolate so that connecting to even close family members and friends can be tough.

You may feel too exhausted to talk, ashamed at your situation, or guilty for neglecting certain relationships. But this is just the depression talking. Staying connected to other people and taking part in social activities will make a world of difference in your mood and outlook. Reaching out is not a sign of weakness and it wont mean youre a burden to others. Your loved ones care about you and want to help. And if you dont feel that you have anyone to turn to, its never too late to build new friendships and improve your support network.

Need to talk to someone?

Get affordable online counseling from BetterHelp or visit HelpGuides directory for free helplines and crisis resources. HelpGuide is reader supported. We may receive a commission if you sign up for BetterHelp through the provided link. Learn more.

Recommended Reading: How To Stop A Depression Spiral

How Are Depression And Anxiety Diagnosed

There are no specific tests but your GP may perform some blood tests for other health conditions that share similar symptoms with depression or anxiety.

Your GP will need to get a good picture of the way youre feeling mentally and physically. They will ask you lots of questions about your symptoms and the changes youve noticed.

It can be difficult to think about specific answers on-the-spot but the following suggestions might help you plan ahead for your appointment.

  • Make a list of all your symptoms, whether they are worse at certain times of the day or on particular occasions, how long youve had them and their effect on your day-to-day life and relationship with others.
  • Explain any circumstances that could be contributing to these symptoms and the way you feel.
  • Take a list of all medications you currently take, including any supplements or non-prescription medication.
  • Be as open and honest as you can remember anything you say is confidential.

Do Something That You Like

We have said before that depressed people tend to have a passive attitude and lose the desire to do things. Even something that you used to be passionate about now loses its meaning and seems stupid to you.

For this very reason, it is important to force yourself to do them, trying to recover the illusion. It is not necessary that the activity makes you completely happy or that you enjoy the same as before, but it is enough that you reduce the level of sadness a bit, and in the long run, you could recover your passion for it.

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How Can You Tell If Someone Is Dealing With Depression

Depression touches most Americans, whether they experience it personally or it affects someone they know. In fact, The National Institute of Mental Health reports its one of the most common mental health disorders in the United States an estimated 17.3 million adults were living with depression in 2017.

So how can you tell if a friend is just a bit sad or hassomething deeper brewing? There certainly are telltale signs, Dr. Borlandnotes. But since you dont necessarily see that person every day, you may haveto do more detective work.

He recommends watching for behavioral changes or anything that could be out of character for your friend. Some depression symptoms include:

  • Lack of engagement:They lose interest in activities they used to enjoy or want to hang out less.
  • Change in communication patterns: Youused to chat or hang on the regular, and now theyre MIA.
  • Changes in hygiene and sleepingpatterns: Theyre sleeping less or all the time. Their appearance andhygiene no longer seem to be a priority.
  • Displays of sadness or anger: Theirtemper now has a hairpin trigger, or maybe they seem more down than usual.
  • Withdrawal from social outlets:Theyre missing from activities where they were formerly fixtures.

Tms Therapy For Depression

I have depression – how can I help myself?

If youre suffering from major depression that has been resistant to therapy, medication, and self-help, then TMS therapy may be an option. Transcranial magnetic stimulation therapy is a noninvasive treatment that directs recurring magnetic energy pulses at the regions of the brain that are involved in mood. These magnetic pulses pass painlessly through the skull and stimulate brain cells which can improve communication between different parts of the brain and ease depression symptoms.

While TMS may be able to improve treatment-resistant depression, that doesnt mean its a cure for depression or that your symptoms wont return. However, it could provide sufficient improvements in your energy and drive to enable you to begin talk therapy or make the lifestyle changessuch as improving your diet, exercising, and building your support networkthat can help preserve your depression recovery in the long term.

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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.

Do The Opposite Of What The Depression Voice Suggests

The negative, irrational voice in your head may talk you out of self-help. However, if you can learn to recognize it, you can learn to replace it. Use logic as a weapon. Address each thought individually as it occurs.

If you believe an event wont be fun or worth your time, say to yourself, You might be right, but itll be better than just sitting here another night. You may soon see the negative isnt always realistic.

A lengthy to-do list may be so weighty that youd rather do nothing. Instead of compiling a long list of tasks, consider setting one or two smaller goals.

For example:

  • Dont clean the house take the trash out.
  • Dont do all the laundry thats piled up just sort the piles by color.
  • Dont clear out your entire email inbox just address any time-sensitive messages.

When youve done a small thing, set your eyes on another small thing, and then another. This way, you have a list of tangible achievements and not an untouched to-do list.

All goals are worthy of recognition, and all successes are worthy of celebration. When you achieve a goal, do your best to recognize it.

You may not feel like celebrating with a cake and confetti, but recognizing your own successes can be a very powerful weapon against depressions negative weight.

The memory of a job well-done may be especially powerful against negative talk and overgeneralization.

Focus on times when you feel the most disorganized or scattered.

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Know That Today Isnt Indicative Of Tomorrow

Todays mood, emotions, or thoughts dont belong to tomorrow.

If you were unsuccessful at getting out of bed or accomplishing your goals today, remember that you havent lost tomorrows opportunity to try again.

Give yourself the grace to accept that while some days will be difficult, some days will also be great. Try to look forward to tomorrows fresh start.

How To Help Someone With Depression

How to help someone in Depression â I am going to take ...

Dr. Borland recommends some dos and donts to get the conversation going:

Do: Practice assertive communication

Rather than making depression taboo, talk openly with yourfriend about your concerns. Dr. Borland recommends cultivating the art ofassertive communication: You take ownership of your feelings and concerns andcommunicate them without finger-pointing. And you listen and provide yourfriend with unconditional emotional support.

To do this, practice using Istatements. Begin sentences with, Im worried, Im concerned or Ive noticed.Then explain your concerns to your friend, he suggests. Avoid saying, Youdont seem like yourself, or You havent been hanging out as much as youusually do. They can create defensiveness in the person receiving the message.

Do: Show empathy

Put yourself in your friends shoes in a nonjudgmentalway. Think about how you would feel if you were coping with symptoms ofdepression and how you would want friends to react. Maintain eye contact whenlistening, and say things like, That sounds hard. Im sorry you are goingthrough this, and Im always here for you.

And if youve dealt with depression yourself, self-disclosure can be very powerful, Dr. Borland points out. Youre giving your friend a gift by opening yourself up and sharing that you understand.

Do: Set boundaries

Do: Be patient

Dont: Think you can fix it

Dont: Give up

But what if your friend rejects your efforts even when youvedone all the right things?

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Tip : Eat A Healthy Depression

What you eat has a direct impact on the way you feel. Reduce your intake of foods that can adversely affect your brain and mood, such as caffeine, alcohol, trans fats, and foods with high levels of chemical preservatives or hormones .

Dont skip meals. Going too long between meals can make you feel irritable and tired, so aim to eat something at least every three to four hours.

Minimize sugar and refined carbs. You may crave sugary snacks, baked goods, or comfort foods such as pasta or French fries, but these feel-good foods quickly lead to a crash in mood and energy. Aim to cut out as much of these foods as possible.

Boost your B vitamins. Deficiencies in B vitamins such as folic acid and B-12 can trigger depression. To get more, take a B-complex vitamin supplement or eat more citrus fruit, leafy greens, beans, chicken, and eggs.

Boost your mood with foods rich in omega-3 fatty acids.Omega-3 fatty acids play an essential role in stabilizing mood. The best sources are fatty fish such as salmon, herring, mackerel, anchovies, sardines, tuna, and some cold-water fish oil supplements.

Psychotherapy For Depression Treatment

If there is no underlying medical cause for your symptoms of depression, talk therapy can be an extremely effective treatment. What you learn in therapy gives you skills and insight to feel better and help prevent depression from coming back.

There are many types of therapy available. Three of the more common methods used in depression treatment include cognitive behavioral therapy, interpersonal therapy, and psychodynamic therapy. Often, a blended approach is used.

Some types of therapy teach you practical techniques on how to reframe negative thinking and employ behavioral skills in combating depression. Therapy can also help you work through the root of your depression, helping you understand why you feel a certain way, what your triggers are for depression, and what you can do to stay healthy.

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Look After Your Physical Health

Exercise has long been known to be a great way to fight depression. If you feel well enough, head out and get some fresh air outside even if its just a brief stroll in the park. Again, you should only do what feels right. If you need to build up to this by starting off slowly , then do whats right for your recovery.

What activity is good for depression?

  • Walking or running
  • Aerobic-heavy sports like tennis or squash
  • Mindful activities like yoga or meditation
  • Gym classes

Another significant factor in managing depression is good quality sleep. Research shows that 80% of people with clinical depression struggle with disturbed sleep. Small things like turning off electronic devices and ditching late-night caffeinated drinks and stodgy foods may well lead to you enjoying a better nights sleep. With better sleep, you might also find your mood improving in the day.

The evidence shows that exercise can be a way to manage symptoms of depression, thanks to the endorphins, dopamine and serotonin that are released during exercise that make us feel better. If you feel well enough to do so, introduce exercise into your daily routine.

How To Cure Depression By Yourself 8 Active Tips

Self-help for depression 1: Introduction

Nowadays, depression is a typical and very frequent problem of the society in which we live, being an increasingly prevalent phenomenon in the population. In this article, well discuss how to cure depression by yourself.

Consider how depressed person who has at least one sad mood and partial loss of the ability to feel interested and pleasure, along with other problems such as fatigue, poor judgment, problems sleeping or feeding, appearing negative thoughts recurring to they make life look negative, sometimes uncontrollable and hopeless.

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