Depression affects approximately 14.8 million Americans a year. It’s debilitating, often times making even the simplest tasks hard to complete. Here are some tips to help lessen the symptoms of depression and make you feel more like yourself again.
1. Get help. This can be in the form of therapy (individual or group) or anti-depressants. Studies show that people with depression show the greatest signs of improvement doing a combination of the two. If you aren’t able to do this, get help in the form of family and friends. Ask them to be supportive and offer help whenever possible.
2. Exercise. This one may be very hard to do, especially if you have a loss of energy. However, exercise can help greatly with depression because it increases the “feel good” hormones (dopamine and serotonin) in the brain. Consequently these same ones that decrease with depression.
3. Get adequate sleep. Sleep is important because without proper sleep, we can’t function at our best! When we sleep, the brain produces “feel good” hormones which can help boost your mood.
4. Get active. This means doing whatever it is that brings you pleasure and makes you feel good. Whether it’s singing, building a tree house, reading, working on an old car, or sewing find some time for you to do it. It will bring happiness back into your life even if it’s just for an hour a week. It will help lessen your depression.