Top tips to beat depression and anxiety
What is depression?
Depression is classified as a mood disorder. Depression is much more than feeling unhappy, sad, or down for a couple of days.
Many people experience periods of feeling down. However, when you are depressed, you feel constantly sad for weeks or months, rather than just a couple of days. Depression is a low mood that can last for a long time, even years, and affects your everyday life.
In its mildest form, depression can mean being in low spirits. It does not stop you leading your normal life but makes everything so much harder to do. Life can seem less worthwhile. At its most severe, depression can be life-threatening, because it can make you feel suicidal.
A major difficulty and obstacle for people suffering from depression is the fact that some people think that depression is trivial and not a genuine health condition. Therefore, it is important to remember that depression is not a sign of weakness and not imaginary or made up. It is real.
The good news is that with the right treatment and support, most people with depression can make a full recovery.
Depression can affect all aspects of our lives including relationships, work and careers, family, leisure time, home life, and more. It can also affect pre-existing health conditions. Conditions that can get worse due to depression include;
- cardiovascular disease
However, feeling sad at times is a normal part of life. Upsetting events happen to everyone. But, if you’re feeling down or hopeless regularly, you could be suffering from depression. Depression is considered a serious medical condition that can get worse without proper treatment.
Depression and anxiety
Many people with depression also have symptoms of anxiety. There can also be physical symptoms too, such as feeling constantly tired, sleeping badly, having no appetite or sex drive, and various aches and pains.
There are also some specific types of depression;
- Seasonal affective disorder (SAD) - a form of depression that occurs at a particular time of year, or during a particular season, e.g. when it is dark in winter.
- Prenatal depression - a form of depression that occurs during pregnancy. This is sometimes also called antenatal depression.
- Postnatal depression (PND) - a form of depression that occurs in the weeks and months after becoming a parent. Postnatal depression is usually diagnosed in women, but it can also affect men.
The symptoms of depression can be experienced differently among men, women, and children.
What causes depression?
Sometimes there is a trigger for depression. Life-changing events, such as bereavement, losing your job, or giving birth can bring it on. People with a family history of depression are more likely to experience it themselves, but you can also become depressed for no obvious reason.
Treatment for depression can involve a combination of lifestyle changes, therapies, and medicine. Your recommended treatment will be based on whether you have mild, moderate, or severe depression.
Clinical hypnotherapy is a powerful form of therapy which is used for treating depression with extremely successful results. It allows clients to fully overcome their depression and anxiety, and make a full and rapid recovery enabling them to live happy, positive, and fulfilled lives once more.
As well as clinical hypnotherapy, many people with depression also benefit by making lifestyle changes, such as getting more exercise, cutting down on alcohol, giving up smoking/drugs, and eating healthily.
Joining a support group or attending group therapy sessions can also be very worthwhile. They can help you gain a better understanding of what causes you to feel depressed. Sharing your experiences with others in a similar situation to you can be very supportive. The importance of social connections and support can never be underestimated.
Lifestyle changes can also be an effective way of becoming more positive in your daily activities. Here are some lifestyle changes that you can make today to beat depression and anxiety.
1. Exercise. Even a half-hour daily walk can make a big difference, but for maximum results, aim for 30-60 minutes of aerobic activity on most days.
2. Social support. Strong social networks reduce isolation. Isolation is a key risk factor which can cause depression. Keep in regular contact with friends and family, join an evening class, take up a new hobby, or volunteer - this is a great way to get social support and help others too!
3. Nutrition. Eat well. Eat small, well-balanced meals throughout the day. Keep your energy up and minimise the sugar crash and mood swings.
4. Sleep. Sleep has an extreme and very strong effect on mood. Sleep deprivation can cause, and increase, irritability, moodiness, sadness, and fatigue. Get enough sleep each night, (seven to nine hours is preferable).
5. Reduce stress. Make changes in your life to reduce stress. Too much stress can cause, and increase depression. Spend some time to look at the aspects of your life that cause you to stress, e.g. work overload, poor relationships, finances, poor health, etc, and then find solutions to reduce their impact. A coach or mentor can help you with this.
6. Therapeutic techniques. Some types of therapy, such as clinical hypnotherapy, also teach you practical techniques on how to reframe negative thinking and employ behavioural techniques to beat depression. Therapy can also help you work through the root cause of your depression, helping you understand why you feel a certain way, what your triggers are for depression, and what you can do to stay healthy.
Finding the right therapist for you
A key factor to consider when choosing a hypnotherapist or coach is your connection with this person. The right therapist will be caring and a supportive partner in your treatment and recovery.
How to choose a therapist
Word of mouth is one of the best ways to find a good therapist. Your friends and family may have some good ideas, and always ask to see reviews and testimonials from previous clients. Your GP may also be able to provide an initial referral.
Depression medication may be the most advertised treatment for depression, but that does not mean it is the most effective. Depression is not just about a chemical imbalance in the brain, although the 'happy chemicals' inside our brains can and should always be used and improved! This can be done using clinical hypnotherapy, without medication.
Serotonin, Endorphins, Dopamine, and Oxytocin are the four main happy chemicals in our brain that we can learn to develop, increase, and use throughout our daily lives to enhance and improve our mental well-being. Learn how to do this using clinical hypnotherapy!
Medication may help relieve some of the symptoms of moderate and severe depression, but it does not cure the underlying problem, and therefore it is not a long-term solution. Anti-depressant medications also come with side effects, and withdrawal can be very difficult.
Always seek the help and advice of your GP if you are feeling unwell. If you are wanting a safe and successful treatment for beating depression and anxiety, then clinical hypnotherapy may be something that you choose, and please remember that help and support is always available for you.
Please do not suffer in silence.
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