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Understanding The Cycle of Depression

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When depression is keeping you from living your best life, it’s time to get the help you deserve. Read on to learn more about the depression cycle.

Depression is a serious mental disorder that can lead to recurrent depressive episodes. There may be a period of time between one episode and the next, but then the cycle repeats itself. This is known as the cycle of depression.

Learn more about depression

The symptoms of depression can severely affect a person’s life. Depression results in the person having no energy or motivation to participate in daily life. As a result, the disorder impacts her job, relationships, marriage, and health.

Sometimes depression is a chronic condition. This means the person is having repeated episodes of the mood disorder, not just a one-off mental health event. This only adds to the adverse effects of depression as it can cause someone to feel hopeless.

In order to achieve the best treatment outcome, it is important to seek treatment as early as possible. Being aware of the symptoms of depression is one way to recognize them.

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If two or more symptoms are present for at least two weeks, it is diagnosed as major depressive disorder. Symptoms of depression include:

  1. sadness and hopelessness.
  2. Loss of interest or pleasure in activities one once enjoyed.
  3. Change in eating habits that leads to weight loss or gain.
  4. sleep disturbance
  5. Restless or sluggish movements.
  6. Extreme tiredness.
  7. Irrational feelings of guilt or shame.
  8. Difficulty paying attention or making decisions.
  9. thoughts of death or suicide.

Depression is a complex mental illness that is not yet fully understood. Science continues to search for answers as to what might trigger depression. Here are some risk factors that may contribute to the disorder:

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  • Genetics. Have family members who are also struggling with depression.
  • brain chemistry. An imbalance in neurotransmitters.
  • Abuse. A history of physical or sexual abuse.
  • Trauma. Witnessing or witnessing a highly traumatic event.
  • Loss. The sudden unexpected death of a loved one.
  • health conditions. Certain health conditions such as cancer, Parkinson’s, Alzheimer’s, thyroid disease, MS, HIV and stroke.
  • medication. Certain medications list symptoms of depression as a side effect.
  • Personality. Undeveloped coping skills, certain personality traits; tendency towards negativity.
  • substance abuse. Depression can coexist with a substance use disorder.

The Cycle of Depression

Some may struggle with multiple episodes of depression. You can have an episode, find relief for a period of time, and then have a depression relapse. When this pattern repeats itself over and over, it causes the person to feel hopeless. Breaking this cycle is crucial to restoring your quality of life.

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The cycle of depression can also refer to the actual episode itself. This means some of the symptoms may appear, such as insomnia, fatigue and weight gain. This causes the person to feel tired and unable to carry out their daily tasks. You might start isolating and becoming sedentary, which will only make it worse. This leads to feelings of sadness, shame, and despair as they can no longer function. The impaired function can then lead to sadness and so on.

5 tips to improve mental health

  1. Exercise. Making regular exercise a part of your daily routine can do wonders for improving brain chemistry. The “exercise effect” refers to a landmark study that showed how physical activity improved mood in study participants. This effect is caused by the production of brain chemicals like endorphins, serotonin, and dopamine.
  2. Nutrition. While fast food and convenient convenience meals are within easy reach, improving our diet is key to managing depression symptoms. Processed foods, sugary drinks and treats, and alcohol should be limited. For optimal mental health, try a diet rich in omega-3 fatty acids, whole grains, fresh vegetables, fruits, and nuts.
  3. Holistic Activities. You can learn how to reduce feelings of stress through holistic methods. These include yoga, tai chi or meditation. Hatha yoga combines movement and breath control to increase energy and improve mood. Tai Chi is a form of martial art that involves balance and mobility work. Meditation helps you achieve a calm state of mind.
  4. Additions. Natural supplements can be helpful when you first start feeling depressed. St. John’s wort, SAM-e, vitamin D and B vitamins can have antidepressant effects. A naturopath can safely prescribe the products that are appropriate for depression symptoms. If symptoms persist after a few weeks, the person may benefit from drug therapy with antidepressants.
  5. find meaning and purpose. Sometimes just getting involved with a good cause or charity can help relieve depression. Shifting your attention outside of yourself and using your time to help others gives a sense of purpose. Even setting new personal goals, such as B. exploring a new career or making new friends can really help.

Get help for depression

Sometimes you can’t find relief no matter what you try to manage your depression symptoms yourself. If this is the case, it is very important to reach out to a mental health provider who can offer treatment.

The standard treatment protocol includes both antidepressants and psychotherapy:

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  • antidepressants. A doctor selects one of the drugs as the starting point for the patient trial. These drugs take about 4-6 weeks to take effect. If the first drug doesn’t improve symptoms or causes too many side effects, another will be tried.
  • Psychotherapy. Individual and group therapy are helpful in treating depression. These roundtables provide a safe space to explore underlying emotional issues that may play a role in depression. CBT is also helpful in learning to change distorted thinking and behavior patterns that can cause negative thinking.

Do you feel trapped in the cycle of depression? Get help today.

Altitude Behavioral Health

Altitude Behavioral Health

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The treatment specialist offers advice on mental health problems

The Treatment Specialist is an online resource for informative articles on mental illness and treatment options. We support adults, young people and families in a timely manner. If you or someone you care about is struggling with depression, contact us today at (866) 644-7911.

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