Depression is a medical illness that affects the way a person thinks, acts, and feels. It can impact men, women, and children and make it difficult to enjoy life. If you feel depressed, you may also experience one or more of the following symptoms:
- Feelings of guilt, sadness, and/or hopelessness
- Appetite changes
- Insomnia or sleeping too much
- Difficulty thinking and/or concentrating
- Suicidal thoughts
Approximately one in 15 adults experiences depression symptoms in a given year, according to the American Psychiatric Association. Additionally, there are many factors that may impact a person’s depression symptoms, and these factors include:
Biochemistry: An imbalance of certain chemicals in the brain may result in depression symptoms.
Genetics: People with a family history of depression are more prone to feeling depressed.
Environmental Factors: Frequent exposure to violence, abuse, and poverty increases the likelihood that a person will experience depression symptoms.
Personality: People dealing with low self-esteem or high-stress levels are more susceptible than others to depression symptoms.
Depression is problematic, but it is treatable. Common depression treatments include:
Medication: Antidepressant medications may be prescribed by a doctor to help an individual address his or her depression symptoms. A doctor generally performs a patient evaluation, analyzes this individual’s depression symptoms, and recommends an antidepressant to alleviate these symptoms. Antidepressants can help individuals feel less depressed than ever before. But in some instances, antidepressants cause vomiting, nausea, and other intolerable side effects. Depression patients sometimes need to try multiple antidepressants before they find a medication that delivers the desired results.
Psychotherapy: Also referred to as “talk therapy,” psychotherapy involves meeting with a mental health counselor for regular sessions. Psychotherapy allows a depressed individual to share his or her depression concerns and questions, work with an expert to identify the root cause of his or her depression symptoms, and find ways to cope with their depression symptoms.
Transcranial Magnetic Stimulation (TMS) Therapy: TMS therapy is a revolutionary depression treatment. It involves the use of magnetic pulses delivered to the brain; these pulses help stimulate neural activity to alleviate depression symptoms. TMS therapy is FDA-approved for treatment-resistant depression. It has also been CE-approved in Europe to treat bipolar disorder, PTSD, and other mental health conditions.
In addition to the aforementioned depression treatments, self-care plays a key role in addressing depression. Now, let’s look at 10 self-care ideas to treat depression symptoms.
1. Treat Yourself to a Personal Day
Take a day off from work, school, or other everyday activities — you will be happy you did. A day off from the hustle and bustle of everyday activities helps you recharge and refocus. Then, when you return to your everyday activities, you’ll be better equipped than ever before to maintain a positive outlook.
2. Get Rest
Sleep deprivation may prevent you from being fully yourself — if you feel tired, you’re unlikely to maximize your day-to-day productivity with things that you enjoy or give you satisfaction. On average, adults require seven to nine hours of sleep per night and kids require up to 11 hours of sleep per night to avoid sleep debt. If you prioritize a good night’s sleep, you can get the rest you need. Perhaps best of all, you can wake up feeling revitalized.
3. Enjoy a Cup of Herbal Tea
For centuries, herbal tea has been used to help alleviate stress and reduce body pain and soreness. Herbal tea also comes in a variety of types, ensuring that you can find a flavor that you can enjoy any time you choose.
4. Spend Time with Your Child or Pet
Spending time with a child or pet helps to combat stress. Furthermore, it provides an excellent opportunity to get outdoors, seize the day, and socialize with others. If you commit time to your child or pet, you may start to forget your worries — and your depression symptoms may subside as well.
5. Write Down Your Thoughts and Feelings
A journal allows you to write down your thoughts and feelings as well as examine your depression symptoms. Journaling sometimes helps people have a better understanding of their depression symptom patterns or triggers. It may even help you discover the deeper causes of your depression symptoms and determine the steps you need to take to address these symptoms.
6. Make a Gratitude List
A gratitude list helps motivate you to give thanks. By making a gratitude list, you can explore ways to show your appreciation to others and open the door to new relationships. Your gratitude list may help you experience fewer emotional aches and pains and improve your psychological health as well.
7. Practice Mindfulness
Mindfulness activities like yoga and meditation allow you to focus exclusively on the here and now. In doing so, these activities help you take your mind off of your worries. They have also been shown to help people lower blood pressure, improve sleep, and reduce chronic pain.
Exercise helps you feel happy and healthy. By walking, jogging, playing sports, and performing other physical activities, you can boost the production of endorphins, the feel-good chemicals in the brain. Over time, you can build an exercise regimen that helps you keep your depression symptoms at bay, too.
9. Perform Deep Breathing Exercises
Even a few deep breaths can make a world of difference, particularly when it comes to managing depression. Deep breathing exercises help relax the body and mind. Also, these exercises won’t take long to perform and can be used just about anywhere.
10. Share Your Thoughts and Feelings with a Loved One
Family members, friends, and other loved ones care about your health and well-being. Thus, if you are feeling depressed, share your thoughts and feelings with a loved one. You and your loved one can then work together to find the best way to treat your depression symptoms.
Self-care is crucial, especially for people dealing with depression. At Achieve Concierge, we understand the value of self-care, and we provide psychiatric services, neuropsychology, and other professional and clinical services to help treat depression.
If you are struggling with depression, Achieve Concierge is happy to assist you in any way possible. To schedule a free consultation with Achieve Concierge, please call us today at (858) 221-0344.