Depression is one of the most common disorders in the United States, according to the National Institute of Health. Yet, many don’t know they are experiencing depression. Passing feelings of sadness are frequent human experiences, but a Major Depressive Disorder (MDD) is a more serious, clinical, disorder that often requires treatment, such as therapy and/or medication, both of which depends on if the Major Depression is mild, moderate, or severe.
If Depression is more moderate to severe, it is best to consider treatment. Alongside any treatment you receive, take note of these 5 Daily Tips for Depression:
1. Don't Isolate.
Isolation may be one of the first things you notice you're doing as Depression creeps in. Although, isolation isn't an actual symptom of Depression, it is a common consequence. Isolation is one of the worst things you can do and is the thing that will single-handedly make Depression much, much worse. Even though you may not feel like it, being around others will help with your mood. Talk to family & friends and ask them to help you not to isolate. Make a commitment to be with others during this time.
When you exercise, your brain produces Endorphins, our feel-good hormones, helping to combat low mood. In a Harvard research study, exercise has been shown to markedly improve mood.
Exercise not only helps with mood bio-chemically, but it creates a feeling of progress and success, both variables that create positive mood states.
3. Mindful Meditation.
Mindful Meditation is a type of meditation that helps to allow feelings to be there; even feelings that we don't like. Paradoxically, accepting that which we don't like is a powerful method in the alleviation of suffering. Making time to be present and to allow sounds simple, yet creates a feeling of power over negative mood states. This useful treatment technique is something I commonly use with clients.
4. Expressive Writing
Writing down all of our negative thoughts & feelings has the beneficial outcome of relieving our mind of the rumination common in Depression. Think of it as a "brain dump," releasing emotional tension.
5. Get Some Nutrition In
One of the symptoms of Depression is either loss or gain in appetite, leading to under or over-eating. Either way, get some good nutrition in to help with mood and energy. If you're appetite is low, get creative: smoothies, nut butter, & yogurt are examples of easy ways to get nutrition if your appetite, and motivation, are low. This helpful Web MD article, a trusted source for health, explains that no specific diet has been proven to be an antidote to depression; however, certain vitamins & minerals, for example Vitamin D, can have an antidepressant effect.
Above all, take care of yourself and take action to get out of a depressive episode. If you need help with Depression, click below on Schedule an Appointment so I can help.
Jennifer Huggins, Psy.D is a licensed Clinical Psychologist in West Los Angeles, specializing in Trauma and Chronic Pain. In addition to these specializations, she helps her clients heal depression, anxiety, and reduce stress though the use of cutting-edge treatments and empowering them to thrive in their lives. Her passion is helping clients find hope when its been lost.
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