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Depression Articles, Tips and Information

Tips to Beating Depression

Everyone has days when they are down, worn out and just not feeling all that happy.

That's OK, you need to have days like this, otherwise how would you know when you are happy. You need to have something to contrast your happiness with. What is black without white?

 

Even though you know that sadness is a part of life, let's try to make it a small part of life.

With that said, here are a few tips to help you feel better when you are feeling down in the dumps. They are easy to do, easy to practice every day and they work!

Our outside work is simply a reflection of our inside world.

1. Stand up straight, sit up straight. When your body is in alignment your energy can flow and when your energy is flowing freely, you can flow.

 

2. Smile! Yes, just smile. Easy to do and effective.

 

3. Repeat positive affirmations. Things like "I feel good", "Positive energy flows through my body", "I see the good in all".

 

4. Listen to some music that you like. It doesn't have to be anything specific, just something you enjoy. Certain types of music work better than others, but experiment and see what works for you. Studies have shown that Classical music and new age music work best.

 

5. Take some time out for yourself, relax and read a book, do something for yourself.

 

6. Meditate. Meditation is an excellent habit to develop. It will serve you in all that you do. If you are one who has a hard time sitting still, then try some special meditation CDs that coax your brain into the meditative state. Just search for "Meditation music" on Google or Yahoo and explore.

 

Remember there is no reality just your perception of it. Use this truth to your advantage. Whenever you are sad, realize that it is all in your mind and you do have the power to change your perception.

 

These tips will lift you up when you are down, but don't just use them when you are sad. Try and practice them everyday, make them a habit. You will be surprised at how these simple exercises will keep the rainy days away.

 

On a final note, if you are in a deep depression that you can't seem to shake, please go see a doctor. This is your life and don't take any chances.

 

Find out more about Mental Health at healthandfinesse.com

 

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As always, before you attempt to self medicate or try a new health regimen or program we suggest you retain the services of a qualified health care professional.

 

Bigger than the Baby Blues - Signs of Postpartum Depression

 

The joy of bringing a child into the world, a baby to love and cherish, may be the plan but to 50-80% of new mothers suffering from a form of depression known as the Baby Blues that dream is not the reality.

 

What is of more concern are the less frequent cases where baby blues develop into something longer lived and more severe: postpartum depression.

 

While Brooke Shields (along with the help of Oprah Winfrey) has put a famous face on this dreadful disorder, thousands of women who face the pain and anxiety of postpartum depression fight a private battle of wills between their knowledge of what motherhood should be and their detached feelings, hopelessness and even suicide.

 

What causes postpartum (also known as postnatal) depression and what are the signs?

No precise cause has been found that causes a happy, healthy woman to loose her sense of self, desire and joy for life when she should be enjoying the experience of motherhood.

 

While many women suffer side effects from the temporary drain of estrogen hormones soon after birth the effect of this estrogen loss may go even further in women diagnosed with postpartum depression.

 

Other factors, such as financial stress, relationship and communication problems or a history of depression in the family may contribute to postpartum depression.

 

Identifying postpartum depression is crucial since it IS treatable. Often it will become the responsibility of the partner or other friends and family to watch new mothers for signs of depression. Postpartum depression can occur anytime after birth - even up to a year after.

 

The National Women's Health Information center lists these signs to watch for in mothers who may be suffering more than the baby blues:

 

Feeling restless or irritable

Feeling sad, hopeless, and overwhelmed

Crying a lot

Having no energy or motivation

Eating too little or too much

Sleeping too little or too much

Trouble focusing, remembering, or making decisions

Feeling worthless and guilty

Loss of interest or pleasure in activities

Withdrawal from friends and family

 

Having headaches, chest pains, heart palpitations (the heart beating fast and feeling like it is skipping beats), or hyperventilation (fast and shallow breathing)

 

After pregnancy, signs of depression may also include being afraid of hurting the baby or oneself and not having any interest in the baby.

 

It is very important for mothers to have a strong support system in place since the demands of caring for an infant, especially when other children are present, can lead to stress and burnout. All most mothers need is loving care and someone to talk to. For those suffering with depression, it is even more crucial.

 

Find out more about Mental Health at healthandfinesse.com

 

Depression And Suicide

Eighteen year old Catherine had everything: the most supportive family, a loving boyfriend, awesome set of friends and a comfortable life. But all of these things took a backseat when she was diagnosed with depression. From the bubbly chatterbox that she was, she morphed into a melancholic girl who had nothing in mind but to kill herself. "There is nothing left to live for. I'm worthless and hopeless." That statement ran in her head over and over again. She wanted to jump off the bridge or drink formaldehyde on a whim.

She was suicidal.

 

While not serious, the baby blues can leave a new mother despondent, tired, and subject to emotional swings and loss of appetite. The effects of giving birth, hormone changes and the lifestyle changes of having a newborn (not sleeping, being indoors a lot, responsibilities of caring for a baby) can lead to a bout of the baby blues. Baby blues are usually short lived and go away without treatment.

 

It took a lot of trips to the doctor and support from her family and friends before Catherine bounced back to normalcy. Now, the melancholia and suicidal thoughts are gone. She has just finished college and is about to start her dream job.

Suicide is defined as the act of killing oneself intentionally. It stems from severe depression, an illness that intervenes with the mental, physical and emotional aspect of a person.

 

The majority of depressed people do not actually die from suicide. But depression does trigger a higher suicidal risk. New data has reported that two percent of depressed people who have received treatment for depression in an outpatient scenario might die by suicide. Four percent of those who were treated in an inpatient hospital setting might also die by the same method. Those who have suicidal attempts before are also likely to die by suicide later on. Another research shows that 7 percent of men with a history of depression will eventually kill themselves whereas only 1 percent of women with history of depression will do.

 

Those who have had mood disorders commit suicide. The clinically depressed younger ones often turn to substance abuse to kill themselves.

 

The most common method of suicide is by the use of firearms, as it makes up the 60 percent of suicides. From a study of the National Institute of Mental Health, about 80 percent of white males commit suicide by shooting themselves. This pushes the resolve that a firearm must be removed from the home if a family member is discovered to be at risk for suicide.

 

The next most common method for men is hanging where as drug overdose or self-poisoning is the second most common suicidal method for the women.

 

Other than depression, there are other risk factors for suicide:

 

1. Impulsivity. There are people out who do things on a whim. If one has a gun in hand, he might shoot himself out of an impulse.

2. Traumatic life events. A death of a loved one, financial rut or other adversity might compel a person to kill him or herself.

3. History of suicide in the family. There is such a thing as "suicide contagion" in which a person is exposed to suicides and suicidal attempts often. This can become a risk factor for killing onself.

4. Family violence If one is physically or sexually abused, he or she might turn to suicide to end the ordeal.

5. Suicide attempt before He has done it before, why not do it again?

6. Alcohol and drug abuse An alcoholic or drug addict will reach a point when he will have no qualms on killing himself.

 

Depression is a problem that has to be uprooted to keep suicidal thoughts at bay. If a person is suicidal, it is a must that he receives professional treatment. Usually, those who are thinking of killing themselves do not know they need help.

 

Preventing suicide is no easy feat, either. It is in this light that a broad and extensive suicide prevention program must be established. These programs must zero in on the treatment of depression and drug abuse. Before being launched to the public, they must be scientifically assessed and tested first for effectiveness and safety. They must also be extensive and complex enough so that the effects will last a long time and eventually banish all suicidal thoughts. They must also be carried out according to the age, culture and gender of the suicidal patients.

 

Depression and suicide do go together, but if one works hard to combat depression thoughts of suicide will be banished.

 

Dr. Isaac Schumann brings to you a life time of experience in the mental health field http://www.depressionhelpguides.com

Natural Treatment For Depression - It Is Possible!

Depression is one of the most common psychological and emotional problems American adults encounter. A study reports that about 13 to 20 percent of American adults have some form of depressive symptoms. Unfortunately, many severe cases of depression can ultimately lead to suicide.

 

Are there any solutions and treatments available to stem this unfortunate tide?

Fortunately, the answer to this is yes. Unfortunately again, many of these treatments involves a soup of medicines that may have some form or side effect. As we discussed previously psychotherapy is another solution that is gaining popularity due to the favorable results they have exhibited.

 

For some people, the question that remains is if there are any "natural" depression treatments available that do not involve some cocktail of hard-to-spell medications that can be taken as a preventive and beneficial alternative to mainstream treatments. The answer is yes. Although it is recommended that any form of depression should be consulted with a doctor let's take a look at a list of natural supplements that may help alleviate symptoms of depression.

 

It Starts with the Diet Depression can be treated with better nutrition. Studies have shown that such treatment not only has a beneficial effect on the person's physical health, but also a favorable effect on the person's mental and emotional health. This nutritional treatment includes modification of diet, vitamins and minerals, and the addition of some amino acid supplements.

 

The amino acid supplements are essential elements that are precursors to neurotransmitters. The amino acids D, L-pheylalanine and L-tyrosine are a viable alternative to antidepressant drugs.

 

A deficiency in vitamins and minerals in the body can also cause depression. If this condition is corrected, depression owing to this cause can be alleviated. Even if you are not sure if you lack vitamins and minerals, supplementing your diet with them will often improve symptoms related to depression and will contribute to better overall health.

 

In this type of therapy, the emphasis is mainly placed on realizing the thoughts as well as the behaviors that are associated with the depression problem rather than on the emotions themselves. The rationale for this emphasis is that is strongly believed that by altering one's thoughts and consequently, behaviors, his or her emotions will most likely change as well. Because of this type of therapy, cognitive-behavioral therapy is often short-term (generally lasts up to a dozen sessions or two only) and best suits people that are experiencing some kind of distress that is related to the depression they are having. Individuals that are able to handle a problem using a perspective that is unique and therefore are most likely cognitively-oriented could also do well under this approach.

 

Some Very Useful Herbs The herb St. John's Wort (Hypericum perforatum) in an extracted standardized form is being used in Germany and other European countries to treat depression in its mild and moderate forms. It is also known to alleviate anxiety and sleep disorders.

 

This herb claims many benefits - among them are its anti-depressive and antiviral properties.

The Ginkgo (Ginkgo Biloba) extract, while not a primary treatment for major cases of depression, is an excellent supplement to any depression-related syndrome. Studies are beginning to show that Ginkgo can be used to treat some forms of depression that are not responsive to antidepressant agents. In cases of resistant depression, Ginkgo Biloba is beginning to appear attractive to the medical world.

 

Cut Back on Those Soft Drinks Many practitioners advocate a nutrition oriented approach to treating depression. They believe that the answer to the depression question can be found in the diet of a person. Studies show that a decrease in the intake of sugars and refined carbohydrates can produce relief from symptoms of depression.

 

This diet will entail cutting out sugary drinks, pasta, white bread, and other processed foods. For your carbohydrate needs, it would be better to stick to grains, whole wheat, and other natural plant based carbohydrates. Also, cutting down on these kinds of food can do wonders for one's overall health.

 

This treatment is recommended for those who feel depressed and languid during the late hours of the morning and the afternoon. For these people, eating sugary foods will induce a temporary feeling of alleviation from depression. However, this is only for a few minutes, and the body automatically reverts to languid depression.

 

Depression is one serious disorder that should not be taken for granted. Some people will equate depression with other natural feelings such as anger, happiness, and sadness. However, depression is much more complicated than that. It is a disorder and an ailment that can be treated by natural or medical means. It would do well to consult your doctor for more information on dealing with depression.

 

Dr. Isaac Schumann brings to you a life time of experience in the mental health field http://www.depressionhelpguides.com

Treating Depression

Health care providers can take care of depressed people. A physician, for one, has also training in treating psychiatric disorders. The same goes with the physician assistant and the nurse practitioner. If the case is severe, these health care providers will automatically refer the patient to mental health specialists.

 

The mental health specialists are composed of the following: psychiatrist, psychologist, a psychiatric nurse specialist and even a social worker.

 

The psychiatrist offers treatment and diagnosis for mental and psychiatric patients. A psychologist, on the other hand, is trained for counseling, psychological examination and psychotherapy. The social worker knows counseling to a certain degree, whereas a registered nurse who has taken masterals in psychiatric nursing can help out the patient.

 

Before the diagnosis can be made, the health care providers or mental health specialists will ask the patient on the following: symptoms, overall health and medical and mental history of the family. A physical exam will be carried out as well as some lab tests.

Depression, being an illness, requires tremendous emotional support from the family. A family member must accompany the patient on doctor visits to give the latter a boost.

 

During the course of the visit, the doctor will figure out if the case is severe, mild or moderate. Depression is severe if the person experiences all the symptoms and if it keeps him from doing all his daily activities. Moderate, if the person has a lot of the symptoms that it hampers his activities. It can be categorized mild if the person has some of the depression symptoms and if he needs more push to do all the things he needs to do.

 

No one must underestimate depression. It is a real illness, and therefore the patient needs all the help and attention he can get. As said earlier, you are not alone in this problem. Fortunately, depression, of all psychiatric illnesses, proves to be one of the most treatable. With proper care, more than 80 percent of those suffering from major depression experience significant improvement. Even those suffering from severe depression can helped. Here are some treatments for depression problems:

 

Psychotherapy There are many types and methods of therapeutic approaches used for treating depression. The most common types are behavioral therapy, cognitive behavioral therapy, rational emotive therapy, and interpersonal therapy. Approaches also include psychodynamic and family approaches. Both the individual as well as group modalities have been used commonly, but these depend on the severity of one's depression, the financial resources of the person, and resources that are available locally.

 

Arguably the most prominent therapy in treating depression, the cognitive behavioral therapy is commonly used for handling the condition. There has been extensive research and medical studies that conducted to check or assess the safety as well as the effectiveness in treating depression using this type of therapy.

 

Considered the father of cognitive behavioral therapy, many written studies and books support this type of therapy. Cognitive behavioral therapy uses simple techniques that focus primarily on the patient's negative thought patterns. These negative thought patterns are also known as cognitive distortions. A person suffering from depression may from time to time use these cognitive distortions, igniting the condition.

 

The therapy starts with the establishment of a supportive and warm environment for one suffering from depression. Making the patient learn about how his or her depression problem may be a result of thinking in cognitive distortions is generally the next step. The types of faulty logic and thinking are also discussed in this step (such as "everything or nothing logic," "blame mis-attribution," "overgeneralization," among others) and the person being treated is encouraged to start taking notes of the thoughts he or she has been having as they happen throughout his or her day. This is conducted for the person to understand and realize how often and common this kind of thoughts are occuring.

 

Interpersonal therapy, on the other hand, is also a therapy on a short-term basis used for treating depression. In this type of treatment, the focus usually lies on the social relationships of the patient and determine ways in improving these relationships. It is strongly believed that in order to improve the overall well-being of a person (or the patient in the case); he or she needs to have a stable and good social support.

 

When a person's relationships become unhealthy, the person would most likely suffer from this problem. This therapy approach then seeks to enrich one's skills in social relationships, expression of his or her emotions, assertiveness, and communication skills. This type of approach is usually done individually but sometimes can be used also in a setting for group therapy.

 

Many individual approaches would place importance more on the patient's active personal involvement in recovering from depression. Persons being treated under an individual approach are usually enticed and encouraged to finish homework assignments between sessions. If the person is not capable yet to join in therapy sessions actively, then his or her therapist could be the one to first provide the patient an environment that supports him or her until the medication starts to help improve his or her state of feelings and mind. Psychodynamic or psychoanalytic approaches in treating depression currently do not have much research to recommend their use. Although there are some therapists that might use psychodynamic theory in helping conceptualize a patient's personality, there are some issues raised on how this could prove to be an effective and efficient depression treatment.

 

Couples or family therapy could also be considered if the depression of the patient directly affects family relationships. These types of therapy focus on the interpersonal relationships among family members. In addition, these approaches seek to ensure good communication in the family. The roles of the family members in a patient's depression could be examined. Education about the depression problem in general might also be used as part of the family therapy.

 

Medication The Food and Drug Administration (FDA) has approved numerous medications for treating depression. These drugs have been sorted into classes; each medication has a unique chemical structure which acts on various chemicals present in the brain. It is necessary to remember that all medications approved by the DFA to treat depression are effective and recommended - they just do not work the same effect for everybody.

 

You might want to closely work with the doctor in determining which drug is the best for your condition. Sometimes, conditions may involve having more than just one medication; some work with a mixture of medications. This is important: Do not change your medication or discontinue your dosage without asking your doctor.

 

Dr. Isaac Schumann brings to you a life time of experience in the mental health field http://www.depressionhelpguides.com

 

Related Cure Help Health Tips articles on Depression

 

Symptoms of Depression - When you love someone who suffers from depression or bipolar disorder you may find yourself frustrated, angry or losing your ability to tolerate their behavior towards yourself, your children or other friends and family.

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