Anxiety and depression are familiar conditions to us, but are also among the most serious illnesses in the world.
There are times when we feel anxious and moody. So what? We all go through the same things from time to time, don’t we? Anxiety and depression are normal part of life. Who has not studied for an exam without having test anxiety, and then scored much higher for it? Anxiety can keep us alert.
Depression, on the other hand, can slow us down, giving us time to reflect and recollect ourselves. In other words, anxiety and depression express moods that are familiar to everybody.
But, when anxiety and depression seem to come from nowhere, last for weeks without relief, and get in the way of everyday activities, then we are not talking ordinary moods anymore; they are now illnesses. Anxiety and depressions are one of the most common mental illnesses in the world today.
People with anxiety disorder may have several physical symptoms, like trembling, sweating, muscle aches, nausea, fatigue, palpitation, dry mouth, cold and clammy hands. Emotionally, they are apprehensive, irritable; they have the feeling of impending doom, and they are self-conscious- feeling like being watched and criticized, etc.
Obviously, people with anxiety disorder are often left immobilized. Anxiety keeps them house-bound, away from people, not able to do normal and simple for fear of this or that. People experiencing anxiety symptoms should know that it is a common disorder and is very curable.
The anxiety symptoms that you may experience include:
o Increased sweating
o Shortness of breath
o Chest pain
o Nausea or stomach discomfort
o Feeling of light-headedness
o A feeling of unreality
o Feeling of being detached from oneself
o Fear of losing control or going crazy
o Fear of dying
o Feeling of impending doom
Depression, on the other hand, is a serious medical condition that affects the body, mood, and thoughts. It affects the way a person eats and sleeps, one’s self concept, and the way one thinks about things. A depressive disorder is not the same as passing blue mood.
It is not an indication of personal weakness or a state that can be willed or wished away. A person with depressive disorder usually can’t pull themselves together and get better. Without treatment, symptoms can last for weeks to years. The treatment involves medications and/or temporary psychotherapy, which can be more helpful with depression sufferer.
The symptoms of depressions may include:
o Persistent sad, anxious, or empty mood
o Feelings of hopelessness, pessimism
o Loss of interest in hobbies or activities that were once enjoyed, including sex
o Guilty feelings, worthlessness, helplessness
o Decreased energy, fatigue
o Difficulty concentrating, remembering, making decisions
o Appetite and/or weight changes
o Trouble sleeping or oversleeping, early morning awakening
o Thoughts of death or suicide, or suicide attempts
o Restlessness and irritability
o Persistent physical symptoms such as headaches, digestive disorders, and chronic pain that does not respond to routine treatment.
Anxiety and depression are two different conditions, but they are the same in the sense of the intensity of how serious these conditions can be. They are among the most common and most treatable mental illnesses in the world.
How to combat with anxiety and depression
Reactivate your life. Recover physical activity, mental activity and social activity.
Change negative thoughts to realistic thoughts.
Address and resolve emerging problems.
It usually takes a while to get out of depression. Recovering from depression is a process that is usually long and slow. It usually lasts several weeks or months. In this process you can notice a slow improvement or something sudden where you suddenly notice that you are feeling better.
Here are some thoughts and ideas that can help you get out of depression:
There are no magic bullets. The treatments are effective but the chemical and psychological balance of the brain is very complex and has its own mechanism of compensation, habituation, plastic changes.
Antidepressant drugs are slowly acting and usually go from two to three weeks before the first effects are noticed. The effects of therapy also need time to be incorporated into a person’s thoughts, to his or her way of being and to face the difficulties of everyday life. Be patient.
Don’t be discouraged. The exit from depression is a slow process but in the end you will be yourself again. You might even be a better person for everything you’ve been through. Keep hope.
We are not all equal before the therapy.
Medicine and psychology are not Exact Sciences. Each person is a world and the interactions between a drug and the human body are based on the study of thousands of people and these results are studied statistically.
In other words, the doctor or psychologist advances through a delicate and gradual process of intervention. He has to find the right drug and the right dosage for you. Or you have to see how you respond to therapy, how you progress in the different stages that are being proposed in the psychological consultation.
The professional has to look at the results that are being achieved and adjust the treatment to that progress.
Other organic or mental problems may be associated with depression or be affected by medication. Depression can interact negatively with some diseases such as heart disorders or cancer. Depression can cause problems with pain sensitivity, sexual desire, sexual intercourse and sleep.
You can help yourself out of depression. In the process of getting out of depression there are things that can help you as well as there are others that you can avoid. Remember, chances are you don’t feel like doing anything or being with anyone.
But instead of getting under the blanket or doing absolutely nothing, which often makes you feel even worse, you can try, little by little, to take on some activity.
Don’t think about what you want to do because the normal answer is that you don’t feel like doing anything but what I can do. As little as you think, it’s a lot.
Put on simple goals that you can fulfill: go throw away the trash, copy in a notebook the lyrics of a song you liked, order the cutlery in the kitchen drawer. Small, concrete, clear things. It is wrong to set ambitious goals in the midst of a depression.
No one is guilty of your depression. You’re not to blame for having a depression, and neither is anyone else around you. But you do have a responsibility to make reasonable efforts to make yourself feel better little by little.
Break your homework into small pieces. It may be that because of depression you have issues that under normal conditions are not a problem and are now difficult to deal with.
For example, you may not have looked at your mailbox even though you know you have a lot of mail waiting. Break that “check the mail ” task into small things.
The first day is fine if you just pick up the mail and leave it in a pile on a table.
The next day it is worth to you to separate on the one hand the propaganda, on the other the letters from the bank, light, and other receipts, and a third group with the other cards.
The next day it’s okay for you to drop the propaganda mail and open the bank letters. The next day, you only have to pay for a receipt if you don’t have a home address.
The next day just pay another receipt. And so on. Very little, not to overwhelm you but by advancing step by step.
Recovers the relationships.
Depression will have taken you away from a lot of people. It is convenient that you also take small steps to recover your social life.
It’s not the best time to go to big parties, but you can meet someone nice for a cup of coffee, or you can go see a friend and give him back something he lent you.
There’s no problem with you telling someone that you know they love you, I’m a little depressed, and I could use you to come in for a while or take a walk, even though I probably won’t talk much.
Find a CI. Talking helps. It is highly recommended that you establish with someone you love and want a daily contact. It can just be a conversation on the phone. You don’t need therapy just to listen to you.
It has to be someone who doesn’t give you Impossible advice, or who gets irritated easily, or who, for whatever reason, makes you feel worse. Think of family and friends, and you’re sure to find the right person.
You can tell him these are the instructions for the Daily confessional time. If you start having suicidal thoughts, tell your doctor or staff at a health center or emergency department immediately. Get help.
Group therapy helps many people. Many people benefit from attending a group of people who have had depression. It doesn’t have to be a lifelong commitment, but they’re people who will understand you, and if you go a few weeks, it can do you good. Many believers also feel better after contact with a priest or religious groups.
Go over what you liked, what gave you satisfaction, and do it again after breaking it into tiny stages. At first, don’t expect you to have fun with it or feel like it or like it the way you used to like it.
Now you’re doing it like you’re taking medicine, because it’s good for you, not because it’s pleasant for you. If, for example, you liked to paint with watercolors, the first day just look for the paintings, paper and brushes and place them where you normally paint.
The second day he works on a sketch with a pencil and a paper, whatever comes out and so on, step by step. What you do with these activities is that all your mental activity does not revolve around depression, little by little you have to take away that blocking power by doing, with effort at First, different things.
Stay away from the depression walking. If it’s not easy to go out for exercise when you’re okay, it’s even more complicated when you’re depressed but you have to. Things that are important under normal conditions become much more important when you have depression.
Exercise has been shown to improve the mood of people who are depressed. Aerobic exercise recommended for good health, 30 minutes of moderate intensity exercise at least five days a week significantly improves depression. Start slowly, decide what you can do and set yourself a target that’s less than that.
If you think you can walk for 20 minutes at an agile pace, try 15 minutes and don’t get discouraged if you don’t feel better afterwards. As always with exercise the improvement is not instantaneous but it works always if you persist.
You have to think straight again. When you’re depressed, you have all kinds of negative thoughts about yourself, the people around you, your life: you’re a complete failure, you’re Stupid, nobody appreciates you, you’re worthless.
Don’t try to see everything in pink because it’s not about changing one distorted vision for another, what it’s about is thinking about yourself playing fair with yourself and realistically.
Avoid alcohol. Alcohol is a depressant substance. Sometimes depression induces the affected person to drink and sometimes alcohol abuse leads to depression. Drugs and alcohol make depression worse and may interact negatively with antidepressant drugs.
Alcohol does not help overcome depression and the same is true for other substance abuse and caffeine.
Salt on the street. Sunlight is a powerful antidepressant. Take advantage of the hours of light and enjoy the sun. Don’t wear sunglasses. If the days are short, you may have to change your habits to be on the street when there is still light. If you’re in a city with very little light, maybe you can look for a lamp with lighting that is as close as natural.
Eat healthy. This means eating a healthy and diverse diet and not abusing prepared foods. Include in your diet whole-grain bread, fish, fruit, vegetables, meat, a little bit of everything and with a preparation that respects the natural flavors.
Sleep tight. Change your sleeping or bedtime habits so you have a good night’s rest. Go to bed and turn off the light every day at the same time. Turn off the TV and don’t fall asleep with the TV or the radio on. Before sleeping, take quiet, relaxing activities such as reading, or taking a hot bath.
Don’t work late or get into activities that cause stress or make your mind accelerate. The best thing to sleep is a tired body and a relaxed mind.