Depression is described as feeling hopeless or distraught about one’s situation in life. This condition can be categorized as temporary unlike postpartum depression or major depression which refers to a chronic disorder that can last for
years. Depression is also considered a disability if it is chronic and has become the top disability among Americans aged 15 to 44. Fortunately, there are ways to deal with depression naturally which means you do not have to rely on addictive drugs or costly consultations.
Common Facts about Depression
- The National Institute of Mental Health says women are more prone to depression than men.
- There are 3 milestones in a woman’s life that is almost certain to cause depression: start of menstruation, after giving birth, and during menopause.
- Men tend to self-diagnose and self-medicate whether by drugs, alcohol, or by socializing.
- The number of people who experience depression is increasing dramatically.
What Kind of Depression Do You Have?
There are several types of depression and it is critical to be diagnosed properly because it will give you an idea of the severity, timeframe, and scope of your condition. Keep in mind that while it is a mental condition, it is not abnormal to get depressed. This is something often caused by outside forces which you may not be in control of. Thus, stay positive and approach herbal remedy as a positive move towards improved health. After all, there are many ways to deal with depression naturally.
Aside from major depression which is a severe form, other types of depression are:
- Postpartum depression which affects about 15% of women after they give birth.
- Seasonal Affective Disorder (SAD) which is depression caused by insufficient natural sunlight.
- Dysthymia is a minor form of depression where the person’s mood is consistently low but generally lasts for a maximum of 2 years only.
- Bipolar Disorder is a cycle of moods from mania to depression and back again.
- Psychotic depression refers to people who have hallucinations and is considered to be the most severe type where a person loses touch with reality.
5 Ways to Deal with Depression Naturally
First of all, it is important to understand that you are not helpless in your struggle with depression. Sometimes changing your lifestyle works. Other times, you may be required to do more than reduce the stress and learn to relax; you may have to take something but it’s vital to start with knowing you can beat this naturally. You have to decide to stop being sad and depressed.
While it is hard to stay positive because of the depression, you need to make a physical effort to get out of bed, out of the house, out of your routine. You need to start a new routine where the days don’t seem like one big empty space. If you cannot do it on your own, get someone who can help you create a weekly calendar of activities. You do not have to fill every hour with activities but you have to schedule a few every day.
The activities can be simple at first like taking a walk every 9 in the morning followed by coffee and breakfast in a nearby café. From this, you can build other activities like visiting a friend, going to the grocery, buying cooked food, or planning a meal.
Second, talk to someone. This is one of the more effective ways to deal with depression naturally. However, you have to choose the right person to reveal your innermost thoughts to. This person should have experience and knowledge on depression.
Third, consider taking herbal supplements. Some of the highly recommended herbal supplements for depression are folic acid, fish oil, St. John Wort also known as hypericum perforatum, Omega 3 fatty acids, S-adenosyl-methionine or SAM-e, and 5-HTP.
If you plan on taking supplements and you are also taking maintenance drugs for the depression, you need to consult with your doctor to make sure the supplements do not negate or aggravate the prescribed medication.
If you are hesitant to work with herbal supplement, keep in mind that many drugs target the symptoms, not the cause. Add to this the fact that many prescription drugs have lingering and often debilitating side effect not least of which is its addictive nature. Supplements will also work best if your diet is adjusted. For example, a high protein diet will dampen the effects of herbal supplement as will eating food with oxidized artificial trans fat. Thus, stick to a low protein and clean, saturated fats. You should also lessen if not remove entirely caffeine and other similar food and drink stimulants.
Fourth, consider trying other complementary and alternative medicine (CAM) like aromatherapy, acupuncture, massage therapy, breathing and relaxation exercises, and guided imagery.
Finally, one of the best ways to deal with depression naturally is by starting an exercise and fitness program. This will give you a chance for your body to release endorphins which is also known as the happy hormones. You don’t even have to pay for a gym membership or force yourself to be around other people. You can start by jogging after work or school. It’s a good way to build an appetite and ensure a good night’s sleep.