Depression overshadows the amazing life we live, creating darkness for those suffering from its effects. While we understand depression and how it works, millions of people across the world still find themselves afflicted with the mental illness every year.
Depression causes feelings of sadness that can lead to more severe symptoms, including suicidal thoughts and loss of interest in life. This condition is treatable with time, effort, and the right treatment options in place.
Finding the best depression treatment proves difficult for many people. The long list of options combined with the fact that the treatments affect each person differently makes choosing difficult. Below, examine common depression treatments available before visiting your doctor.
Schedule an appointment with a medical professional. He can diagnose the condition if it’s not already and discuss the treatment options available. Although doctors oftentimes recommend a prescription antidepressant for depression treatment, they often do not recommend it as a lone treatment. It’s a combination of treatments that resolve the debilitating effects that depression creates in our lives.
Of course, medication is not always necessary for the treatment of depression. People sometimes avoid medication unless it is life-threatening or for other personal reasons. Additionally, non-prescription, all-natural medications recommended for depression treatment are sold at health food stores across the country.
However, the doctor knows best. talk to your doctor for the best treatment options, which include those outlined on the following list.
1. Lifestyle Changes
Doctors always recommend patients make lifestyle changes when battling depression. Changes that you should make include:
• Exercise: At least 30-minutes of daily exercise keeps you healthy and fit, but also increases serotonin and endorphins in the brain that make you feel good. Studies show that exercise is just as effective as a prescription medication for depression.
• Nutrition: Eliminate processed foods (sorry McDonalds,) sugary foods, carbohydrates, and other unwholesome items from your diet. Replace these foods with fresh fruits and vegetables, whole grains, lean meats, and poultry, all of which offer vitamins, nutrients, and other health benefits.
• Sleep: Sleep affects our mood. Without enough sleep, depressive-like symptoms occur. The American Sleep Association (ASA) recommends adults get seven hours or more sleep each night. Aim for this number or higher.
• Reduce Stress: Manage stress, which exacerbates depression and puts you at added risks for more severe problems. Learn what causes you the most stress and find ways to minimize its impact on your life.
Bottling up emotions worsens depression and its symptoms and side effects. Talking to a therapist can be extremely helpful not only for depression treatment but other issues burdening the individual’s life. Most medical professionals agree that therapy should be a part of any depression treatment plan.
The licensed, highly-trained BetterHelp counselors provide confidential services that will give patients insight into depression, its underlying cause, and how to prevent its future return. Patients enjoy opening up to a therapist, as well as the sound advice they gain in return.
Psychotherapy provides additional benefits including:
- Improve relationships with family and friends
- Learn how to set healthy boundaries
- Gain insight into better strategies to deal with issues affecting your life
3. Alternative Therapy
Many alternative therapy treatment options benefit depression sufferers. The effectiveness of alternative therapy varies from one technique to the next. A few common, effective alternative therapy treatment options include:
- Guided Imagery
4. TMS Therapy
TMS therapy comes into play when therapy, medication, and other treatments fail. Transcranial magnetic stimulation (TMS) therapy works by directing recurring magnetic energy pulses to the areas of the brain that regulate our mood using a noninvasive treatment. This treatment is not suitable for everyone but shows positive benefits for resistant depression.
5. Social Support
The SAMHSA offers a free, confidential 24-hour helpline for anyone battling depression who needs advice, guidance, or someone to listen. They also provide referrals to agencies, publications, and other helpful information.
This organization assists callers with advice, guidance, and a listening ear. They can also direct individuals to local therapists, mental health centers, and provide them with additional resources. Both individuals affected by depression and their friends and family can use the hotline for assistance.
Friends, family, coworkers, neighbors, and others can help you stay connected. Knowing that you are not alone, that others care, and even hearing their stories makes a big difference when treating depression treatment.
Treating depression takes time and commitment, regardless of which treatment you choose. It sometimes feels like the treatment is not working, which causes a lot of frustration.
Remember, it takes at least six weeks to notice any dramatic effects of treatment, whether it is medicine, exercise, or something else. Bear patience in your day and soon, you will be back to your old self again.