More people these days are seeking help for the pros and are now being treated for their depression. Some need to take medications like anti-anxiety medications, antidepressants, and antipsychotics. Others are exploring alternative medicine therapy such as IV infusion therapy, wherein ketamine is administered for fast symptom relief.
Doctors also prescribe certain lifestyle modifications to fight depression. This is since, lifestyle can contribute to our mental health. The healthier your lifestyle is, the easier it will be for you to be more resilient to stress and depression. Here’s what you can start doing to help keep your depression at bay.
Staying active keeps your body healthy, your mind engaged and your immune system strong. With regular exercise, you will have something to focus on instead of your sad thoughts. If you feel like your depression is kicking in, start moving and if you can, engage in exercise.
Walking your dog to the park, playing physical sports with your kids or jogging are great ways to keep your body moving. You can consider taking up a new hobby instead of spending your days lying around, watching TV shows, or playing on your phone. Just do any activity you enjoy that requires you to move and not sit around all day.
Eat Right and Sleep Better
A healthy diet and quality rest and sleep are essential for depression. One can’t function properly if you lack sleep and your body doesn’t have the energy to burn. Take note that some people eat too much when they are depressed, while others lose an unhealthy amount of weight. Some depressed people sleep too much while others can’t sleep at all. With a bit of diet and sleep hygiene modification, you can reduce your depression symptoms.
Aside from eating healthy, there are certain kinds of food you need to avoid and must consume to fight depression. Eat food rich in Vitamin D, Omega-3, good carbs, and selenium. Avoid food such as sweets, caffeine, alcohol, and illegal drugs. To improve your quality of sleep, keep a regular bedtime routine minus the distractions. Exercise regularly and go out more so you will feel tired at the end of the day.
Get Your Daily Dose of Sunshine
Vitamin D is a fat-soluble vitamin that your body needs to keep your bones and teeth strong and healthy. It also helps boost your immune system. You can get vitamin D from different kinds of food, but the sun is your best source.
People feel generally gloomy and irritated during the cold season. During winter, days are shorter and we don’t get as much sunlight as we used to during summer. When we stay indoors for too long and we don’t get to enjoy much sunshine, it is easy to feel sad and tired. This only goes to show that a lack of sunshine can indeed affect our mood and can even make some people feel depressed.
If you spend most of your time cooped up indoors, then try to go out more and expose yourself to natural sunlight. Walk when running errands and spend some time in nature while there is still sunshine. You can let the sunshine in by opening your windows. During winter when there is less sunlight, you can consider light therapy as a substitute for natural sunlight.
Welcome Social Support and Interaction
It can be tricky to stay social now that there is a pandemic going on. Lucky for us, we now live in a modern world. Now, you can easily keep in touch with family and friends using your smartphone. Whenever you feel sad or lonely, ring a friend or video call a family member. If you are comfortable sharing your thoughts with them, then go ahead and do so. But if not, you can stick to any subject that can take away your thoughts from the things that make you sad.
You can join support groups and connect with people who understand what you’re going through. It can be daunting at first, but you will soon feel welcomed after you take the initial step. Many people are very much willing to help others who are depressed because they know just how it feels to be affected by depression.
You can also consider online forums where you can read about other people’s struggles for depression. Trained professionals can give you the kind of support you need during the dark times. You can even find a professional who can offer one-on-one counseling via online therapy.
Fighting depression can be difficult. But you can make it easier if you start making the necessary lifestyle changes. Eat better, get more quality sleep, and get enough exercise. Stop isolating yourself and welcome social interactions and support. Don’t forget to welcome more sunshine into your life and to seek professional help as needed.