Depression can be a paralyzing situation. It can last only hours or for days and months.
Depression can sometimes be described as hopeless and despairing, like being in a dark cave with no exit in sight. The depressed person yearns for a return to ‘normal’ life, and though like being in a pit, cannot put themselves out.
There are several simple techniques to help relief the pain of depression and alleviate the symptoms.
Drink water. Most of the common ailments which hamper us could be reduced by being properly hydrated. Drinking a cup of water every hour on the hour is a method I use so I can be functioning at peak performance, mentally and physically.
Deep breathing. When we are babies we breath from our diaphragm. Sometime as children we transition to shallow breathing from our lungs, which is not as effective for getting oxygen to our brains. Lie down and put your hands on your abdomen. Breathe so that your belly raises and lowers with each inhale and exhale.
Exercise. Regular exercise is so necessary for keeping mind and body fit and healthy. Join a gym, ride a bike, swim, or go for a walk with the dog. Any activity will help perk up the mind of the depressed person. Force yourself to take that first step toward the activity and soon it will become almost automatic.
Nutrition. Eating properly is a very important key to maintaining mental health. Certain foods can cause biochemical reactions in the body which will affect moods. Keep a journal of what you eat and how it affects you. Do your best to eat a balanced diet with plenty of fruits, vegetables, whole grains, dairy, and protein. Today's produce is deficient of the necessary nutrients for our optimal health and well being. It is necessary to add vitamins and nutritional supplements to our diets. Included in this should be an endrocrine support supplement which will stabilize and balance hormones. For me, this has been one of the vital keys to my mental health.
Rest and a good night sleep. I think the Latin world with their ‘siestas’ have a good thing going. A midday rest gives the mind and body a needed break from the frenetic activity that defines our lives. Getting a solid night's sleep helps the brain and melatonin restore to healthy levels. Melatonin is a naturally occurring hormone that aids as an anti-oxidant and helps with some forms of depression.
Prayer. Our lives are on constant ‘go-go-go'! Praying to God opens up channels of grace that will aid in the restoration of hope and peace in our lives.
Just do it. If depression is keeping you from taking action on something necessary in your life, force yourself to go and do it. Many times the very action of activity will be the catalyst to help lift the depression.
Friends. Have a couple of friends that you can count on to share with and lean on. Feelings of loneliness can become more acute with depression. Trusted friends will offer wise counsel and patient advice to help and not hurt you.
Professional help. Should the depression last longer than a week or two or symptoms of despair become life threatening, professional help should be sought!! Prescribed medicines can provide the stimulus for healing where the simple home ‘remedies’ outlined above are not working.
Above all, do not be afraid. You are not alone. Your life is a beautiful gift waiting to be unwrapped. Follow the steps and find sunny days once again shining on you!
Jeanne Condon, besides being happily married and raising 8 children, works from home helping people improve the quality of their life and their health. She can be reached at http://www.happyandhealthyfamily.com