Do you often feel depressed and depressed? Behind such feelings there can be a developing depression. An expert explains what options there are to prevent it and what those affected should pay attention to.
The psychologist Dr. In a recent article from the renowned Cleveland Clinic (USA), Adam Borland lists seven ways to defend yourself against depression if you feel it coming on.
Get to know your depression warning signs
What are your first signs that you are feeling depressed? Is your sleep pattern changing? Do you suddenly start eating more or less? Are you becoming more irritable and withdrawing from family, friends?
Recognizing your signs of a depressive episode gives you the opportunity to take early action to prevent depression. “You can take some proactive steps to prevent depression from progressing,” says Dr. Borland.
Contact your support network
Many people begin to isolate themselves when they feel depressed and low. Fight the urge to withdraw because it will almost certainly make you feel worse.
Reach out to trusted family members, friends, colleagues, or clergy and talk to them about your feelings. Contact a therapist.
Establish good sleeping habits
Depression often disrupts sleep patterns, either keeping you in bed longer or reducing your bedtime. Maintaining a consistent sleep schedule can help you feel better, notes Dr. Borland.
So avoid the urge to take a nap during the day or lie in bed long after you wake up.
If you’re having trouble falling asleep or staying asleep at night, try limiting your caffeine consumption and reducing screen time before bed.
Focus on good food
Appetite changes that often accompany depression can make it difficult to maintain healthy eating habits. But a poor diet will only increase your depression and increase negative feelings.
If you are a person who stops eating when depressed, invest in easy-to-make soups, sandwiches, and frozen meals that you enjoy and stick to your regular meal plan.
Are you a person who eats more when you are depressed? Then, stock your kitchen with healthier snacks, fruits, and vegetables so you have healthy choices. Try to develop coping strategies that don’t involve food.
Limit alcohol consumption
Depression and alcohol don’t mix. As a depressant, alcohol worsens your mood, warns Dr. Borland. Beer, wine, etc. can also affect your sleep and cause other physical and emotional complications that don’t help your situation.
Exercising can help you overcome your depression. Research shows that exercise can be an effective way to boost your mood, improve your energy levels, and sleep better at night.
You don’t have to suffer through strenuous training either. Even a ten-minute walk can make a difference.
Participate in activities
One of the hallmarks of depression is a loss of interest in… well, almost everything. Do your best to stick to your regular schedule and routine, even if you are not motivated to participate in activities.
Better yet, try something different to create a spark. Maybe that means getting creative through writing, painting, or playing music. Or visiting a nearby park or museum for the first time. Or volunteer to do good in your community.
Participating in something allows you to shift your focus and connect with others – which can help you feel less depressed.
There is no surefire way to nip an episode of depression in the bud. “But having a plan to combat depression can make it more manageable when it occurs,” encourages Dr. Borland. And that can help you feel better much faster. (ad)