What is depression? Many of us feel we may have it and some of us are told we have it, but what exactly is the science behind this phenomenon? The regulatory mechanisms in the human emotional system are activated in response to events and sometimes the brain is unable to balance it all. When these reactions persist and additional symptoms appear, we will witness the onset of clinical depression or anxiety. People suffering from clinical depression report many symptoms such as poor mood, fatigue, lack of desire, sleep disturbances, low motivation, and lack of interest in the planning and execution of daily activities. Clinical depression can be deeper and reach a level of functional paralysis with staying in bed for many hours, with closure and distancing from the environment, with pessimistic thoughts and even suicidal thoughts. Whilst it is very common worldwide, it does not have to be something you live with.
Why do I get negative thoughts?
Negative thoughts are common in those suffering from clinical depression. Thinking and talking about negative emotions can also be part of a patient's normal thinking system when he or she is not in a state of acute depression. That is, a person with such a mental structure, tends to have a negative view of the world and of themselves and they are accompanied by pessimistic thoughts. Adverse events in life can shift the weight of this pessimistic perception toward clinical depression. These thoughts may be triggered and they may leave people feeling trapped or stuck in their daily lives. However, this is incredibly common. Upto 70% of people have described their mood as low frequently. Society, our heavy workloads and personal troubles can contribute to a feeling of depression. Perhaps we feel overworked, unable to spread our wings, tied up in debts or have nobody to turn to. These natural emotions are common and you are never alone.
In depression there is a phenomenon of daily change in moods. This phenomenon is very special and causes the mornings to be much more difficult for the patient, with a lot of restlessness and distress, and an inability to function. In the evenings the situation changes, the anxiety and stress relaxes a little maybe, or perhaps worsens. Plans that they have made may be changed or cancelled altogether from moment to moment, depending on their mood or the current anxiety that is holding them back.
Treatments for Depression
Physical activity is at the top of the list. The professional literature is full of studies that show that physical activity of any kind helps to reduce the symptoms of depression as it is reflected in the extension scales of depression and in patients' reports. It is better for the person to choose an activity that they enjoy, so that it will be easier for them to be motivated. The National Health Service (NHS) in England provides guidelines on appropriate physical activity according to the age of the person. The conclusions are clear, physical activity encourages improvement in mood, weight loss and following weight loss there is an improvement in blood sugar, and blood pressure.
There are also other treatments of course, such as antidepressants and ketamine therapy for depression. Psychological therapies also play a major role in sparking change. Seek emotional therapy for psychotherapy. The methods of psychological treatment during depression are many and can focus first on the given situation in which the person is in assessing the stressors that affect depression, and later on, understanding the personality traits and personal history of the person that led to depression. A person suffering from depression often has a personal history of mental trauma or of a complex personality structure. Effective work in these areas can help prevent future waves. Afterall, depression is managed and not always cured.
Relaxation and Distraction
Relaxation exercises, guided imagery, and mindfulness are three incredible tips for those dealing with depression. The ability to distract from the negative thoughts is important during depression and these exercises are important in treating depression. It's easy to tell a person to 'think of something else', but it's hard for a person to do. In fact, it can be almost impossible in a mind that is whirling out of control. Practice soothing breaths, and breathing patterns to help you relax and calm your mind. You may also want to practice thinking about more fun things (like places where the person feels safe, or where they feel calm and pleasant), self-cognitive work, and more. The path to depression is long, but it is also achievable.