Continuing with our previous conversation on Depression, we will be talking about the different treatments for depression from medications to alternative medication. Don’t worry, I will be providing other links to major websites regarding the top including the National Institutes of Mental Health (NIMH), the World Health Organization (WHO), and various others.
Early Diagnosis and Treatment
As with any mental illness, the earlier the diagnosis is made, the more effective the treatment will be. Seeing a physician is critical. Many people believe you have to see a therapist or a counselor, but often your physician will prescribe you medication for your depression, and depending on the reasoning for your depression some psychotherapy (counseling) is helpful. Most likely if your physician prescribe you antidepressants, a referral to see a counseling with a certain time period will come with it.
Often people with major depression are so depressed by the time they seek help that requires a “jump start” so they can continue with life and normal functioning. One in nine Americans take at least one antidepressant when three decades ago less than 50% did (Psychiatric News, 2017). Your physician and/or mental health professional will help you decide if holistic forms of therapy are appropriate for you. Holistic forms of therapy can be helpful when used with antidepressants or alone. Some holistic forms of treatments include St. John’s wort, exercise, journaling, religion, and healthy eating.
Personally i wouldn’t advocate taking St. John’s wort, but I am mentioning it because I know its consider to be a common herbal supplement. According to the NIMH, St. John’s wort is no more effective than a placebo in treating major depression, but another study is underway looking at the effectiveness of it on mild or minor depression. However, it must be noted that St. John’s wort and various other herbs can have dangerous, and life-threatening interactions with other medications. Please consult a physician before taking over the counter (OTC) herbal medications, and vitamins.
Exercise and Depression
Regular exercise has been proven to be effective. A study published in 2005 that 30 minutes of vigorous exercise helped to relieve depression and the effects lasted longer than those of antidepressants. People who continued to exercise after treatment were less likely to relapse into depression. Exercise helps to enhance endorphins that improve immunity and reduce the perception of pain that also serves to improve mood.
Journaling and Depression
Another method is journaling. Journaling is a great way to deal with overwhelming emotion and help with managing anxiety, reducing stress, and coping with depression. It helps you to control your depression symptoms by helping you prioritize problems, fears, and concerns, tracking symptoms to recognize triggers, and providing positive self-talk while identifying negative thoughts and behaviors.
As a person who suffered from chronic depression, I have run the gambit of different treatments for depression. Previously, I have taken a mood stabilizer, and more recently I have been using exercise and journaling to help fight the depression. For those of you with depression, how do you manage it? What are your favorite tools? Leave an answer in the comments.
- What is Depression? – https://acurlytransition.com/what-is-depression
- Depression – National Institutes of Mental Health https://www.nimh.nih.gov/health/topics/depression/index.shtml
- Percentage of Americans Taking Antidepressants Climbs – Psychiatric News
- St. John’s Wort – https://nccih.nih.gov/health/stjohnswort/ataglance.htm
- Depression – National Center for Complementary and Integrative Health https://nccih.nih.gov/health/depression.htm