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The Not-So-Great Depression



In fact, talk therapy or psychotherapy has been shown to greatly improve depression symptoms. A Canadian study in the 2004 Archives of General Psychiatry found that patients who recover from depression with cognitive behavioral therapy (CBT)—a type of talk therapy that aims to change one’s negative thought patterns—show an improvement that’s similar to taking an antidepressant.

“Medications can help to accelerate recovery, but talk therapy helps to promote changes in behavior, like getting patients out of bed and doing activities they enjoy,” says Luciani. Also, therapists can teach patients how to use self-talk to diffuse negative thought patterns, like “I’m a loser” or “I’ll never get better.”

In addition to talk therapy, your doctor will discuss antidepressant medication with you. These drugs aim to improve your neurons’ ability to function, thus improving your depression symptoms. Popular antidepressants include Paxil, Zoloft, Lexapro and Prozac. Be warned: Finding the right medication may take time. Every person responds differently to these medications (some don’t work, some bring on nasty side effects), so the first 30 days may be a time of experimentation and patience.

Hilary James* from Seattle, tried three different antidepressant medications before finding the right one for her. “I was prescribed Paxil and Effexor by my doctor, but both medications made me very tired,” she explains. “Finally, after taking Zoloft for a few weeks, I noticed I was feeling better and not experiencing the same fatigue that I did with the other medications.”

There are also a number of holistic options available to treat depression. Kathleen Albertson, an acupuncturist and holistic nutritionist from Irvine, CA, treats depression patients using acupuncture and Chinese medicine.

“If your body is not nourished physically and emotionally, this imbalance can cause many patterns of illness, including brain fog, insomnia, anxiety and depression.” Albertson claims that her techniques help 80% of her depressed patients.

Nutrition and diet can also play an important role in dealing with depression. Recent research at Ohio State University has shown that increasing your intake of omega-3 fatty acids—found in salmon and walnuts—may affect your brain just like antidepressants and may improve your symptoms.
Posted: 12/16/07
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  • By VAL3214
  • on 5/30/20 1:03 PM EST
jimmymaxewell

It is true that most of people believe that sadness and depression are same but logically both are different but linked with the each other. And this problem can lead to serious problems in both men and women. Read more

bdcutts

According to me, the best way to deal with depression is to join a group or some sort of classes so that you can interact with new people. Interacting with people can make you feel good and also help to get rid of all negative thoughts.
Link

  • By bdcutts
  • on 2/27/13 6:02 AM EST
SeniorHomer

Probably the one single thing that is most consistently helpful to my depression is movement/exercise. Even so, I don't follow that advice as often as I should and I still have depression, but after many years I've learned that it's almost like magic; rarely do I get a bout of depression that doesnt respond to even the briefest walk. I guess if I'm deep enough in depression, it only takes a little walk to bump things up. When I walk regularly, it's like a Force Field against depression; I never get down. When i let things get in the way of the daily walks, I get depressed again. I think if I win the lottery I'll hire a personal trainer to make me get out and walk every single day and see if I can go depression-free for a whole year or something.

Anonymous

Deepak Chopra says that 90% of our thoughts daily are negative. I discovered that volunteering will take away quite a lot of that negetive thought. I volunteer for the Animal Welfare and during this holiday season, I took away at least 20% of my negative thoughts.

  • By Anonymous
  • on 1/1/09 10:55 AM EST
lilliede81

(Somehow I hit the wrong button, so now I'll finish my comment.)
The meditation really helped calm my anxieties & thoughts.
I am so thankful that I was guided through this painful time, with the easiest experience it could have been. I kept telling myself that "this too will pass" & it has.
Occasionally I will have a day or two when I feel "down", but on the whole, I continue to climb toward the sun.
Hope this helps somebody else.
Take care of yourself!

lilliede81

In Nov.'06 I went into a deep depression. My best friend was moving to an independent living senior facility & needed help packing boxes, moving furniture & possessions. It was the coldest, wettest, rainest winter in years, & then a wind storm uprooted trees blew off roofs, and I lost electricity (for 10 days). Because I had promised to help my friend move, I HAD to help. She lost power only 2 days, so she had heat. It took all my energy to get up, get over to help her. We finished the move Jan. 15. That hard work, tho' it was difficult under the circumstances, managed to MAKE me come out of the depression. To this day, I don't know what caused it but since then I've been told that hard labor was the best thing I could have done. It was during that time when I did daily meditation.

lindahopsing

I've been depressed forever and have dealt with it through medicine. The last few years have brought so many changes and "crisis" to my life that I spiraled into deep anxiety. I'm having a tough time just getting through the days, doing what needs to be done (go to work, care for my son), let alone caring for myself. The scariest part is feeling so alone, I literally have no friends or family here, and like Mollie says, 40 minutes a week in counseling doesnt help much. The days I feel strongest is when I do talk to my one friend (she lives 800 miles away and is currently going through her own crisis, and how long can you bother someone with your ongoing problems anyway without becoming a burden?) If I at least knew I was on the right path - I'm not sure the medicine I'm taking is helping, I dont have that network of help... and I'm not sure I'll even have a job at the rate I'm going. I'm so flustered I can't remember how I got here this morning...or what I should be doing...its like reading a page 20 times and it doesnt stick. I am trying to be my own advocate, but when you need help, even that seems hopeless.

Anonymous

If you are depressed and/or having panic and anxiety attacks, please know that you can get through this. Face the pain straight, don’t be fearful, you must walk with it. After several life unsettling life experiences I spiraled into deep anxiety, panic and depression. I am a dietitian and didn't want to take prescription meds, rather I looked towards natural-diet and exercise related treatments. If you give your body what it needs it will heal. One book I recommend is The Mood Cure by Julia Ross. Taking amino acid supplements (precursors to brain neurotransmitters) helped me feel better to the point where I could start doing the emotional work-such as positive self talk, meditation and yoga. Healing takes time, remind yourself that you are resilient and trust the process of life.

  • By Anonymous
  • on 5/27/08 8:55 AM EST
micdeb

Clinical depression is not just an illness that affects the sufferer. It can be confusing, overwhelming, and devastating to the whole family. My husband became clinically depressed after open heart surgery a few years ago. His personality changed, he was angry and irrational, he acted like someone I didn't even know. He has still not recovered and maybe never will. My point is this . . . if you are a family member or close friend of someone stricken with this disease, you need to get help and support for yourself; and you should do what you can to educate yourself about depression so that you can get through it and not take it all so personally. There are books out there on this topic, to help depression fallout sufferers. Often, people with clinical depression wear a mask for everyone else, but not for their spouses or significant others or the people they are closest too. YOU MATTER TOO, AND THIS IS AFFECTING YOU TOO. There is no shame getting professional help in this situation -- you owe it to yourself and your kids. And there is no reason to feel guilty if you are having a hard time dealing with inexplicable behavior that makes you think that an alien being must have taken over your loved one's brain while he/she slept.

  • By micdeb
  • on 5/14/08 6:51 PM EST
kimbrigid

I agree it is hard alone and you feel no one really cares call your closest friend you trust the most it helps inbetween appointments.

Karen22

I agree with Mollie. There's some great info in this article but you feel so alone going through this and your energy is so low that it's hard to pick yourself up. The medications only work for a while, if that, and have side effects. You want to be positive but you feel so crappy that it's hard to change your thinking.

  • By Karen22
  • on 5/6/08 11:00 AM EST
mollie22

I agree with what this article is saying, but there are those of us who don't have family and friends to turn to for help. You can only talk to a psycologist for so long. You feel good while you're there, but when you get home and reality sets back in, what do you do. It's very hard doing this on your own, even with taking medication.