A wide range of treatments are available today to manage depression. The choice of therapy, however, will vary according to the severity of the case and any underlying disorders. What can be done to keep it under control?
Symptoms can now be treated with integrated drug systems, psychological therapies and lifestyle modifications. In addition to this, there are also complementary therapies that can offer positive effects. Let’s see in the next lines how to manage depression with some useful tips.
What is depression?
Depression is part of the mood disorders and among its main characteristics we find: prolonged states of sadness, accompanied by loss of interest in daily activities, loss of appetite and lack of hope, among others.
According to the Anxiety and Depression Association of America, this disease affects approximately 15 million Americans each year. The most worrying aspect is that many underestimate it by not seeking the necessary support. The consequences, in some cases, prove to be fatal.
Depression manifests itself differently in each person. In general, it tends to interfere with aspects such as professional life and social relationships. It favors the onset of concentration problems, sleep disorders and some chronic diseases.
Some helpful strategies for managing depression
In order to manage depression, it is necessary that the disorder be diagnosed by a professional. The earlier it is detected, the greater the chances of treatment success. Once the appropriate tests have been performed and the diagnosis confirmed, the following strategies can be applied to keep it under control.
1. Engage in regular physical activity
Physical activity is one of the best habits to promote mental health. Some studies suggest that sport can significantly contribute to the treatment and prevention of depression.
This is due to the fact that this practice promotes the release of endorphins, chemicals associated with well-being. It also has a calming effect and reduces the presence of chemicals in the immune system, which negatively affect depression. Among the most recommended activities we have:
- Yoga or Tai Chi
- Gym training
- Kick boxing
- Go cycling
- I swim
2. Build strong bonds
Patients with this disorder have a constant need for support. Following this, part of the treatment plan for managing depression includes building strong interpersonal relationships.
Spending quality time with a loved one can help ease your thoughts and reduce sadness.
3. Sleep well to manage depression
Symptoms of depression can interfere with sleep quality. Undoubtedly, sleeping little and badly makes the treatment of the disease more difficult.
People with insomnia are at ten times more likely to suffer from depression than those who rest normally. While it is not always easy, the ideal would be to take some measures to rest well. They include:
- Maintain an adequate and constant temperature in the bedroom.
- Keep away any distracting elements, including cell phones, computers, and televisions.
- Meditate before bed.
- Have a comfortable and clean bed.
- Avoid the consumption of alcoholic and caffeinated beverages.
4. Follow a healthy diet
There is no clear evidence that there is a direct relationship between the consumption of certain foods and the risk of suffering from depression.
Despite this, several researches have highlighted a link between nutrition and the cognitive mechanisms that favor the management of this disorder. Part of the treatment therefore consists in improving eating habits, such as:
- Eat a balanced diet rich in lean proteins, fruits, vegetables and healthy fats.
- Limit the consumption of sugars, saturated and processed fats.
- Increase your consumption of omega 3, a fatty acid found in some foods such as oily fish, nuts and some seeds.
- Drink plenty of water and healthful beverages. Some herbal and spice infusions can also help.
5. Massage therapy to manage depression
Among the various alternative therapies for the management of depression we find a rather well-known one: massage therapy. Although it is not a method that can cure this disorder, it can still alleviate many of the physical symptoms associated with it.
Therapeutic massages combat stiffness, muscle pain and fatigue. In addition to this, many patients have found beneficial effects on sleep quality. For this purpose, the therapist can use some essential oils with antidepressant properties.
Do you or someone in your family suffer from depression? If so, don’t hesitate to follow these tips. Of course, given the complexity of the disorder, you should also consult a professional for adequate support.