Ok Im Feeling Depressed So Now What
Now that you know the symptoms of depression, some positive coping skills can be useful. All of the following techniques are supported by scientific research and medication prescribers like psychiatrists and these skills are frequently recommended as important parts of treatment even for patients who continue to take antidepressant medications.
WARNING: Do not suddenly go off your prescribed antidepressant medications without first talking to your medical provider. Discuss any questions or concerns about the side effects of your medications with your provider.
Most Of Us Have Days That Are Great When We Feel As Though We Are On Top Of The World And Can Accomplish Anything
Then, there are the days where life is not so great, and we are filled with sadness, remorse, guilt, anger, or a plethora of other negative emotions. When these negative thoughts begin to consume us, we can easily fall into depression or feelings of anxiety.
Many of us know someone who is taking medication for anxiety or depression. Medical attention may be necessary in some cases, as depression and anxiety can lead to suicidal thoughts. It may be difficult to get out of a negative slump, but certain habits of self-care can also help to ease the symptoms of anxiety and depression.
If you struggle with anxiety and/or depression, here are some tips to getting yourself on the road to a happier life:
Other Strategies To Overcome Anxiety
This is just a small sample of the many strategies for reducing anxiety. Some people find relaxation exercises like visualization and progressive muscle relaxation to be helpful. Others find goal setting, staying socially active, and spending time with fun distractions to be all they need. Others need to consider herbal supplements like kava and passionflower that can help control anxiety.
But the most important thing to realize is committing to changing your anxiety is the most important step.
Was this article helpful?
Don’t Miss: Can You Faint From Anxiety
Tms Therapy For Depression
TMS Therapy is a painless, non-surgical method for treating depression. It is particularly useful for those who struggle with treatment resistant depression.
Similar to getting an MRI, TMS Therapy administers short, highly focused pulses of electromagnetic fields to areas of the brain known to regulate mood and issues of depression.
It is used successfully around the country by many depression treatment facilities because it delivers outstanding results for those who have not had success with prescription medication.
Its important to note that not all Transcranial Magnetic Stimulation machines are the same, and some like the Magstim Horizon Performance TMS Machine offers higher performance features with additional benefits like the StimGuide 3D Positioning System.
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.
- 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.
Recommended Reading: Dehydration Panic Attack
Tips On How To Manage Anxiety
The best way to combat anxiety is to commit to a comprehensive treatment program. Overcoming anxiety needs to be a lifestyle, meaning that it is something you work towards on a consistent basis. Think about the last time you wanted to get fit for the summer. You knew you had to exercise, but you couldnt just do it sporadically it required consistent healthy eating and exercise to achieve your fitness goals. This is the same with managing anxiety.
That being said, there are various tactics that can help you better manage anxiety and can be integrated into your life at home, without medical intervention.
Cognitive behavioral therapy and other forms of talk therapy can be useful, but the following represent how to overcome anxiety without medicine.
How Effectively Do Antidepressants Relieve The Symptoms
There are a lot of different medications for treating . But it’s difficult to predict how well a particular medication will help an individual. So doctors often first suggest taking a drug that they consider to be effective and relatively well tolerated. If it doesn’t help as much as expected, it’s possible to switch to a different medication. Sometimes a number of different drugs have to be tried before you find one that works.
Studies show that the benefit generally depends on the severity of the : The more severe the depression, the greater the benefits will be. In other words, antidepressants are effective against chronic, moderate and severe depression. They don’t help in mild depression.
The various antidepressants have been compared in many studies. Overall, the commonly used tricyclic antidepressants were found to be equally effective. Studies involving adults with moderate or severe have shown the following:
- Without antidepressants: About 20 to 40 out of 100 people who took a placebo noticed an improvement in their symptoms within six to eight weeks.
- With antidepressants: About 40 to 60 out of 100 people who took an antidepressant noticed an improvement in their symptoms within six to eight weeks.
In other words, antidepressants improved symptoms in about an extra 20 out of 100 people.
Antidepressants can also relieve long-term symptoms of chronic depressive disorder and chronic , and help make them go away completely.
You May Like: What’s The Phobia Of Long Words
Norepinephrine And Dopamine Reuptake Inhibitors
Norepinephrine and dopamine reuptake inhibitors can help with depression by blocking both norepinephrine and dopamine transporters. NDRI medications include Focalin , Ritalin , and Wellbutrin .
Wellbutrin is sometimes preferred because it is less likely to have the sexual side effects that are common in the other antidepressants. Plus, the side effects that are common this medication, which can include headache, trouble sleeping, and dizziness, generally go away within one to two weeks.
Its Easier Than You Think
Many folks confuse sadness with depression. Sadness is a natural state, a necessary part of living. Friendships end. Death steals loved ones. Life provides us with plenty of reasons to feel sad. Feeling sad is appropriate at such times and indispensable. The need to mourn, to feel sadness, is an essential part of what it means to be human. When we honor sadness, it provides us with essential space for self-reflection, and greater empathy and compassion. It also may compel us to recognize difficult truths or inspire us to make better choices.
Depression, however, offers no solace. It brutally assaults us and promotes hopelessness. This is because depression is not a pure feeling but an effort to ward off a complex mix of unwanted ones. Anger, frustration, irritation, and grief are feelings we tend to find intolerable we dont want to feel them. When were depressed, were engaging in a psychic battle to blot out these unwanted feelings. Common psychic defenses against painful feelings include denial , projection , rationalization or binge eating .
Unfortunately, as long as the true causes of our depression remain unaddressed, it will return again and again.
Hunt Down the Cause of Your Depression
Heres a list of the most common situations that often trigger depression:
Recommended Reading: Medical Definition Of Phobia
Avoid Using Drugs Or Alcohol As Coping Mechanisms
Avoiding drugs or alcohol as coping mechanisms could easily fit into maintain a healthy lifestyle, but its critical to point out how much they can alter the brains chemical makeup and worsen any symptoms associated with depression and mental illness.
Mind altering substances like drugs or alcohol can interrupt the brains normal release of neurotransmitters, like dopamine and serotonin, both of which are essential for controlling our mood and emotions.
Chronic substance use can actually lead to damaging, long-term changes in the brains chemical makeup and result in a lifetime struggle with depression.
Alcohol and drug addiction treatment can be effective in helping people manage their depression issues in a much more positive way.
Many people begin using alcohol or other substances as a way to numb depression, and sometimes it works in the short term. But over time, the symptoms become worse as the brain becomes addicted to using substances just to feel normal.
When this happens, depression and addiction combine to form a co-occurring disorder that requires dual diagnosis treatment to properly heal and recover.
Looking For A Boost Or Alternative To Antidepressant Medicines Here Are Four Therapies That May Help Relieve Your Symptoms
Many people suffer bouts of mild or moderate depression as they age. Health issues and the loss of a spouse, family member, or friend are common triggers that can lead to persistent sadness and loss of enjoyment.
While antidepressants like selective serotonin reuptake inhibitors can be helpful to relieve and control symptoms, they are not always the right choice.
“Many older adults don’t want to be dependent on antidepressants, or are sensitive to their common side effects, such as dry mouth, dizziness, sleepiness, and weight gain,” says Dr. Darshan Mehta, medical director of the Benson-Henry Institute for Mind Body Medicine at Harvard-affiliated Massachusetts General Hospital.
Fortunately, there are nondrug options available to help treat and manage mild depression. “These are also ideal as a preventive measure for people who have yet to experience depression, but may have a family history of the disease and are at high risk, as well as those who have had past episodes and want to avoid future ones or be better prepared if they occur,” says Dr. Mehta.
Always consult with your doctor if you experience symptoms of depression. Depending on the severity of your condition, medication may be appropriate, at least in the short term. Otherwise, you may be able to manage and even prevent episodes of depression with these four nondrug strategies.
Read Also: What Is A Phobia Of Spoons Called
Do You Have To Take Pills For Depression
It is recommended that people take depression medication for at least six to nine months, but you may need to take it longer, even if you feel better, even if you have been prescribed it. It is not uncommon for people to take antidepressants for several years at a time. It is up to your doctor to help you decide when it is the right time to stop taking the medication and to work with you to gradually stop taking it.
Are The Effects Of Depression Permanent
Depression not only makes a person feel sad and dejected, but it can also damage the brain permanently, so once the disease has ended, the person has trouble remembering and concentrating. Depression patients are not always able to recover fully. Up to 20 percent of them do not make it through the treatment.
Recommended Reading: Does Donald Duck Have Ptsd
Get A Handle On Stress
Stress can drive up levels of a brain chemical called cortisol, which has been found to be higher in folks with depression. There are lots of strategies for coping with stress, such as time management, meditation, and biofeedback training.
Some stress-relieving activities that you might want to incorporate into your daily life include:
- Deep breathing: A few minutes to slow your breathing and focus your attention on your body in the moment can help you get a better handle on your worries.
- Exercise: Regular physical activity is a great way to blow off steam.
- Progressive muscle relaxation: This process involves intentionally tightening muscles throughout the body, holding that tension for several counts, and then releasing that tension until the muscles are completely lax. With regular practice, you may be able to learn how to intentionally relax your body fairly quickly whenever you are feeling tense.
Learning to manage your stress takes time and practice. Talk to your doctor or therapist about other strategies you might try to minimize the stress and your response to it.
How To Beat Depression Without Drugs
Dr Steve Ilardi is slim and enthusiastic, with intense eyes. The clinical psychologist is 4,400 miles away, in Kansas, and we are chatting about his new book via Skype, the online videophone service. “I’ve spent a lot of time pondering Skype,” he says. “On the one hand it provides a degree of social connectedness. On the other, you’re still essentially by yourself.” But, he concludes, “a large part of the human cortex is devoted to the processing of visual information, so I guess Skype is less alienating than voice calls.”
Social connectedness is important to Ilardi. In The Depression Cure, he argues that the brain mistakenly interprets the pain of depression as an infection. Thinking that isolation is needed, it sends messages to the sufferer to “crawl into a hole and wait for it all to go away”. This can be disastrous because what depressed people really need is the opposite: more human contact.
Which is why social connectedness forms one-sixth of his “lifestyle based” cure for depression. The other five elements are meaningful activity regular exercise a diet rich in omega-3 fatty acids daily exposure to sunlight and good quality, restorative sleep.
Ilardi is convinced that the medical profession’s readiness to prescribe anti-depression medication is obscuring an important debate. Up to 20% of the UK population will have clinical depression at some point, he says twice as many as 30 years ago. Where has this depression epidemic come from?
You May Like: Acute Exacerbation Schizophrenia
Practice These Coping Skills Every Day
I recommend doing many if not all of the following coping skills and techniques once a day when experiencing depression. Its important to know you probably wont be motivated to do any of them at first because depression frequently saps motivation. In other words, know that its normal to feel unmotivated until youre halfway done.
The patients I work with who frequently practice these coping skills get better.The seven techniques can be memorized with the acronym MY PEERS.
1. Meaning: Find small ways to be of service to others.
Find personal meaning by serving something larger than yourself. Remember service doesnt have to be big to count. Consider this, Success, like happiness, cannot be pursued it must ensue as the unintended side effect of ones personal dedication to a course greater than oneself. Viktor E. Frankl, Mans Search for Meaning
2. Your goals: Find workable goals that give you a sense of accomplishment.
Most people feel guilty when talking about goals because they set unreasonable or unworkable goals. A goal is workable if its:
If something goes wrong with your goal, adopt a what can I learn from this? attitude . Also, be careful when comparing your progress with others. We usually compare our biggest weakness with another persons biggest strength. This is unfair .
3. Pleasant Events: Schedule pleasant activities or events.
4. Engagement: Stay in the present.
If You Need To Wallow Wallow But Do So Constructively
Suppressing your feelings and emotions may seem like a strategic way to cope with the negative symptoms of depression. But this technique is ultimately unhealthy.
If youre having a down day, have it. Let yourself feel the emotions but dont stay there.
Consider writing or journaling about what youre experiencing. Then, when the feelings lift, write about that, too.
Seeing the ebb and flow of depressive symptoms can be instructive for both self-healing and hope.
Don’t Miss: Ashley Olsen Anorexic
Meditate To Protect Yourself From Depression
Another tool that will help you treat depression without medication, is regular meditation exercises. Regular meditation practice can prevent you from falling back into depression a second time. It will help you handle emotions better so they dont trigger another depression. You can think of it as maintenance for your mood. Just as a car engine needs to be checked every once in a while, meditation will help you discover early signs of depression and make it easier to stop depressive symptoms from worsening. This might seem more complicated than it is. Meditation can basically be defined in three simple steps:
This is great exercise for your brain and it will help you treat depressive symptoms. At the bottom of this section, youll find more information about where and how to begin.
Mindfulness meditation and depressive thoughts
Can meditation change the structure of the brain?
The study by Dr. Farb can probably explain some of the reasons why mindfulness meditation can decrease depressive symptoms and work as relapse prevention for depression. If youre searching for a medication-free depression treatment, regular meditation practice is definitely recommended.
Explaining how mindfulness meditation can be antidepressant
How much meditation is enough to decrease depressive symptoms?