There is no one way to treat depression, every person is a world and every world has its abysses, black holes and hidden forces. Knowing how to awaken the latter, first by calming despair, sleepless nights, fear and apathy, will require various specific strategies. Because everyone is a prisoner of their own prison and the same key is not used by everyone.
When we are diagnosed with depression, something changes in us. On the one hand we feel relief, in the end all this whole set of unhappiness, lack of energy, bad mood and the desire to cry can be included in a medical diagnosis, in something that constitutes a kind starting point to help us. However, something very special is also happening, we ask ourselves the classic question, and now what? Will my life depend on a series of drugs or lifelong therapy?
1. Concerted attention between different professionals is the key to treating depression
There is an increasingly visible fact: treating physicians too easily prescribe antidepressants and anxiolytics. They are usually the first entry point for that person who comes to them for help, indicating that they can’t take it anymore, that they need to sleep, to relax, to stop crying so often. …
To treat depression properly and completely, we need more strategies, more professionals. It is therefore essential that medical centers also have psychologists working there, in close collaboration with treating physicians, as well as with psychiatrists. Social workers are also a great help in many cases; we must not forget that in recent years the group most often suffering from depression is the one with the least resources.
2. Cognitive-behavioral therapy
So far, the therapeutic strategy that has shown the best results in the treatment of depression is the cognitive-behavioral approach. Therefore, if we combine it with a pharmacological response, it is likely that we will soon begin to identify significant progress.
- This therapy focuses on working the person’s thinking style, demolishing irrational ideas and promoting a gradual change towards better control and a more logical and realistic approach.
3. Interpersonal psychotherapy
As we pointed out earlier, there is no single strategy for dealing with depression, there are many, and it is necessary to find the one that best suits our needs. So while cognitive behavioral therapy is usually one of the most effective, others can help us as well.
Interpersonal psychotherapy is useful when depression is the result of a problem in the patient’s own interpersonal environment (for example, a break-up or the loss of a loved one). The goal of therapy is to deal with both stressful and vital events such as working on one’s own self-esteem or facilitating strategies to improve relationships with others.
4. Therapy focused on emotions
Greenberg’s emotion-focused therapy is a combination of Carl Rogers’ approach and Gestalt therapy. It is very useful in treating depression and aims to help patients identify, work with, and process their own emotions. All of this takes place in a safe environment that is encouraged by the therapist, where it will be possible to deal with anxiety and work on difficult emotions.
5. Exercise is very beneficial
We understand that a person with major depression will not have the strength or the willpower to swim, cycle, or participate in a Zumba class. We are fully aware of this . However, as much as possible , the most appropriate in such cases is to get out of the house, feel the heat of the sun, the noise from outside, and then walk. Just walk.
Something as simple as walking for 20 minutes a day is very beneficial.
6. A good diet
A good diet will not make our depression go away. What we will achieve will be that our immune system will be stronger and that our brain will have the right nutrients, those by which to promote the release of certain neurotransmitters that will help us feel better every day.
Therefore, fresh fruits and vegetables, whole grains, omega-3 fatty acids, and foods rich in magnesium are highly recommended.
7. St. John’s Wort
There is some work supporting the usefulness of St. John’s Wort as an adjunct to treatment for mild to moderate depression. So let’s not hesitate to consult a specialist to find out the most appropriate doses.
8. In the event that the treatment is not effective, we will ask for a second diagnosis.
Many patients show no improvement after following various pharmacological and psychological treatments. In such cases, it is necessary to request a new diagnosis. Why ? Sometimes depression can bring to light a personality disorder that has not been identified.
9. Significant social support from those around us
Medicines treat depression but do not cure it. Psychological therapies treat, facilitate and give us strategies to cope with our depression. In contrast, e psychological support of our family, the confidence and the feeling of being understood heal, it allows other strategies to act in the same direction to succeed.
So let us surround ourselves with the people who are dearest to us to deal with these situations.
10. New hobbies
Our mind may not be receptive to the idea of finding new hobbies that motivate us and involve self-strengthening; however, a very effective strategy for dealing with depression is to introduce tasks, hobbies, or dynamics into our daily lives that we enjoy, relax, and arouse in themselves.
Therefore, exercises such as painting, writing, music or yoga can be very rewarding.
11. Mindfulness-based cognitive therapy to prevent relapses
One fact that we cannot forget is that after overcoming depression there is a risk of relapse. Even more, it may be that the latter knocks on our door again after two or three years.
To prevent this from happening, we have, for example, cognitive therapy based on Mindfulness, ideal for applying daily breathing and meditation techniques with which to work on our negative thoughts, those that sometimes germinate in our mind like weeds.
To conclude, we will recall once again what was pointed out in the introduction: there is no one and only way to treat depression, there are thirty, fifty, maybe more… It is only a question of finding this one. set of strategies that best suit our needs. For this, we have psychologists and psychiatrists to help us on the path that leads to light.