Table of Contents
- 1 Depression Help Expert
- 2 12 Tips To Help Reduce Anxiety
- 3 A Healthy Diet Helps Beat Anxiety
- 4 A Simple Guide To Meditation To Help You Deal With Stress
- 5 Anxiety Help – Need More Anxiety Help?
- 6 Anxiety Home Remedies That Really Help
- 7 Help For Teen Suicide And Depression
- 8 Help For A Child To Cope Up With Anxiety
Depression Help Expert
Let there be no doubt that depression is a serious mental illness that requires months and sometimes years of treatment on the path to a cure. Millions of Americans across the United States are affected by depression each and every year. To make things worse it is estimated that only a third of those who suffer the disease will ever seek treatment.
Because depression is considered a mental affliction, many sufferers shy away from seeking help from a doctor. Rather than being stereotyped, people would rather try to deal with the problem themselves. Depression doesn’t just stop, and it’s a lot more common than people think.
Causes Of Depression
What are the causes for depression? The answer isn’t that simple because there are many elements to depression. The list is quite long.
Let’s list a few of the contributing factors to depression. Brain chemicals being out of proportion contributes strongly to depression. Why does this chemical problem in the brain happen? Generally, the causes are internal – biological issues, genetic disposition, and mental problems – but there are external causes as well.
There are those inflicted that never really determine what spurned their depression. Depression often follows diagnosis of other medical conditions, particularly those that result in imminent death or are chronic.
The loss of a loved one or treasured possession can have a tremendous impact resulting in depression. Some depression is brought on after years of physical, emotional or sexual abuse. In addition, many cases of depression are given birth by substance abuse, rather it be drugs or alcohol.
People’s mental states are fragile. If exposed to the wrong pressures, depression can result. Depression is often passed along in the DNA. Those afflicted have a family history of the disease. Oddly, many drugs including those that regulate depression or anxiety can cause depression. It has been clinically proven that some high blood pressure medication can cause depression.
One of the major causes of depression is stress. Stress can derive from many different areas in our life. Even positive events such as a marriage, a new baby or winning an award can cause stress.
The unknown is often the root cause of this stress, whether it is positive or negative. Arguments with family members, disputes with business clients can both cause stress.
Some people have a low threshold for stress. They’re affected by events and activities that to others seem to not be stressful. Knowing is half the battle. Seek medical help if you or a loved one suffers from depression.
12 Tips To Help Reduce Anxiety
1. Stop the Self-Condemnation – The anxious person increases their anxiety when they castigate themselves for being anxious. We ought to consciously remind ourselves that anxiety is not a shameful state to be in. Our feelings are valid. We need to stop blaming ourselves for being anxious.
2. Develop a Relationship with Our Fears – When we can approach our fear, coming alongside it and giving it its due, we can learn from it, and we therefore avoid it less.
3. Am I feeling anxious today? – It’s a reasonable question. If we are feeling more anxious than normal we may be able to more consciously apply some proactive techniques. We don’t freewheel in worry so much if we are trying to do something about it.
4. Attempt to Be in Two Psychological Places Simultaneously – The skill of the counsellor in treating anxiety is to simultaneously live both the anxious road and the well-adjusted ‘coping’ road. Likewise, for us, if we can keep a foot in both camps, just a little more perspective may be available.
5. Protect Our Thinking World – One of the biggest threats is what anxiety does to our thought world. When our minds freeze it is even more important to make ourselves think; to not avoid thinking. Sometimes simply doing something that doesn’t involve thinking is a way to break through such a mental rut.
6. Find a Safe Place for Change – Few people with anxiety problems are happy to remain there. The key to change is finding a safe place to explore physical, psychological, and behavioural strategies. There may be several opportunities to find a safe place; we may need to capitalise on several strategies.
7. Am I more emotionally attuned than most? – Anxious people tend to be more sensitive regarding the emotional plight of others. They may be more naturally empathic. Their experience with anxiety has probably nurtured warmth within them. This, of itself, is something to celebrate.
8. What Attachment Styles Explain – There is a lot of research to suggest our anxiety is driven from maladaptive attachment – to our parents and guardian-figures, well before we had any decisive influence over our lives. It is not our fault we are anxious. And we can always do some work to improve our circumstances.
9. Understand the Nature of Avoidance – When we conceive that our fears cause us to develop avoidance strategies, whilst facing up to our fears makes them melt away, we see the value in challenging those things we avoid.
10. Do I worry a lot? – Another fair question. It appears that the right hemisphere of our brains – the emotional side – is over-involved in worry, yet the left hemisphere – the more logical side – can easily assist. The logical side helps when it problem solves. When we worry we should ask more often, “What can I do about it?” Doing helps. Doing the practical helps reduce worry. We do what we can; and we accept the rest.
11. The Value of Challenge – When routine life provides its own anxieties, unpredictability threatens to send us over the edge. It is a good thing, however, to get involved in some novelty; to push ourselves to try new things; to take new and little risks. Can we still feel safe in slightly ambiguous situations?
12. Progressive Muscle Relaxation (PMR) – This is a simple technique, along with diaphragmatic breathing, and other physical techniques, can help in a very practical way to relieve anxiety symptoms and assist our confidence.
A Healthy Diet Helps Beat Anxiety
Studies have revealed that eating a healthy diet may actually reduce the signs and symptoms of anxiety. While food alone can’t cure anxiety, it’s wise to consider some changes to your diet if you’re an anxious person.
1. Limit, or avoid the amount of caffeine in your diet
Caffeine is everywhere, soft drinks, tea, coffee, etc. It speeds up your heart rate, and can disrupt your sleep cycle – which down the road becomes a prevailing sign of anxiety. Also, trying to overcome fatigue by increasing your caffeine intake only leads to further long term problems.
2. Limit, or avoid alcohol consumption
Alcohol as well can make anxiety symptoms worse, disrupting sleep too. Many will open a beer or have a mixed drink to relax themselves, although overindulges can have serious consequences, often making things worse in the long term. Hangovers, insomnia and dehydration can all occur and make you feel worse than before you had that drink.
With excess consumption, alcohol actually acts like a depressant, making you feel tired and leading to further anxiety. Alcohol is rapidly absorbed into the body, increasing hypoglycaemia symptoms and causing mood swings.
3. Complex carbohydrates calm the nerves
When anxiety strikes, it’s wise to turn to carbs. Carbohydrates act as mild tranquilizers, increasing serotonin, which is a calming neurotransmitter in your brain. Complex carbohydrates, such as whole wheat bread, pasta and potatoes take longer to digest than simple sugary carbs like white bread. Eating complex carbs helps you stay full longer, keep blood sugar steady, ultimately reducing stress and anxiety.
4. Drink at least 8 glasses of water each day
Dehydration does a number on your body and mind, leading to fatigue, headaches and stress. Increasing your water intake is an invaluable step towards decreasing your anxiety symptoms.
5. Multivitamins and Mineral Supplements
B vitamins are a crucial component for unlocking energy in food. The brain needs vitamin B-6 to produce serotonin, which helps stabilize mood. It’s best to choose a daily supplement which provides 100% of the daily recommended vitamins and minerals.
A Simple Guide To Meditation To Help You Deal With Stress
Meditation is one of the techniques used in stress management. A person who is riddled with problems often finds it hard to focus; which often leads to more problems cropping up due to their mistakes. Meditation techniques helps a person achieve a calm state of mind without having to resort to drugs or relaxation tools and implements. Every step to meditation is done in the mind.
Remember that meditation is not a one shot deal. It is almost impossible to attain a calm state of mind in just a matter of minutes, especially if it’s your first time at it. It is essential that you keep on practicing meditation until you have conditioned your mind to instantaneously achieve the state just by thinking it.
Here are some steps for a beginner to start with meditation as their Stress Management strategy.
Step 1: Find A Quiet Corner To Start Your Meditation
Distraction is a hindrance to those who are still starting out with meditation. When you close your eyes, your sense of hearing will be twice as good so it is quite possible to hear almost anything in your surroundings that will make it hard for you to concentrate.
For beginners, it is important to start out in a quiet place in your home where noise is non-existent. Close your windows and lock your door. If possible, you can tell everyone in your home to minimize their noise so that you won’t get distracted.
Step 2: Ready Your Position
It is advisable for beginners to avoid lying down when practicing meditation. The aim here is not to sleep, and it is a guarantee that you will immediately fall off to sleep if your mind reaches a relaxed state. To stop this from happening, you can start your meditation in a lotus position or you can find a chair you can sit on. Make sure that your back is straight and your hands are relaxed on the armrest or on your lap.
Step 3: Begin Your Meditation With Proper Breathing
A good way to start meditation is to do the proper breathing exercise. You inhale through your nose and exhale through your mouth. This way, you can come up with a rhythm that you can easily focus on. Also, the amount of oxygen in your body will be enough to keep you relaxed. Keep practicing your breathing until you can do it easily without having to think about it.
Step 4: Focus On Your Mind
While you are busy with your breathing, you will achieve a state wherein your mind will start throwing images at you. These are mostly in random — events of the day, future plans, problems and worries, fears and so on. It will be hard to ignore these thoughts and you are not supposed to ignore them. The gist here is to focus on these thoughts without really paying any attention to it.
This might sound hard but a here is a simple example to understand the concept. You know that you have furniture at home — you can see them clearly with your eyes but you are not really concentrating on it.
Focusing on the furniture will usually make you think of its colour, its material, how it looks in that part of your home, and more. You need to be able to look at these random thoughts in a detached state — seeing them clearly in your head but not focusing your attention on it.
There will come a time that these random thought will stop and you will notice that you are already in a blank space in your mind. This is the state you want to achieve during meditation. This is the place where you can think about your problems and focus on it till you can find a solution for it. With this, you have successfully mastered the basics of meditation for your stress management program.
Anxiety Help – Need More Anxiety Help?
Researchers suggest thousands of relaxation tips in formal documents to trigger your mind to work in-sync with your body for anxiety help. The ability to let go of daily pressures of work, school, or relationships may seem impossible for people swamped with too many commitments.
It is possible to have simple things serve as anxiety help: read a book, sit in a garden, watch your favourite cartoon, take a day off of work, or dance to your favourite music. To the sceptical mind, many of these methods may seem too easy or simple; however, taking time to relieve stress causes you to sow down and allows you to relax.
Don’t work during lunch, for example. A simple thing, but stopping and actually enjoying a meal rather than rushing through it with stress for dessert makes for an enjoyable and relaxing meal that also provides anxiety help.
Need More Anxiety Help? Try Cognitive Behavioural Therapy
People suffering from anxiety attacks are often desperate for help. They realize how the condition seems to worsen with time and do not want to get to a point where their entire life is being controlled by their anxiety attacks.
Several drug categories have been tried for anxiety help, but due to their slow response and long list of side effects, patients are now turning towards alternative healing techniques.
What Is Cognitive Behavioural Therapy And How Does It Provide Anxiety Help?
Cognitive behavioural therapy is rapidly gaining popularity in the treatment of anxiety, depression and other mood disorders. It involves a one on one relationship with a trained professional and though it takes time, the change in mood can be clearly felt by the patient.
The cognitive aspect of Cognitive Behavioural Therapy focuses on the thought process. The aim of this therapy is to determine the cause of anxiety. For example, if a person gets anxious at the thought of being in a crowded place, the sessions will help him understand why. Often patients experience paranoia, and then the therapist will help him get over these negative thoughts and focus on positive feelings.
Our actions follow are thinking process and by changing our thoughts, we can change our behaviour. The behavioural aspect of Cognitive Behavioural Therapy is a must for people desperately seeking anxiety help. The therapist will help the patient change his behaviour slowly, by teaching him relaxation techniques, breathing exercises and the desensitization process.
As in the previous example, patients who need anxiety help due to paranoia will gradually be taken through several stimulated experiences, where step by step the fear of people will be overcome.
Help With Stress And Anxiety With Cognitive Behavioural Therapy
Cognitive Behavioural Therapy sessions are helpful for people with obsessive compulsive disorder, post traumatic stress disorder, schizophrenia and even major depression. The sessions are usually once a week and last for one hour. They may go on from six weeks to six months depending on the progress of the patient seeking anxiety help.
Though the meeting with the therapist is just once a week, the patient is expected to keep working on his thought process and behaviour throughout the rest of the week.
Homework is also a part of this anxiety help therapy. Patients are often asked to keep a journal to keep track of their moods and thought process. Once this information is collected, the therapist can discuss it with the patient.
All in all, Cognitive Behavioural Therapy is one of the best non-medicinal management of anxiety. With the proper motivation and patience, this therapy can prevent anxiety from conquering our personalities and then our lives.
Anxiety Home Remedies That Really Help
Anxiety affects us all. Not one person on the planet is exempt from feeling anxiety sometimes. If you don’t have extreme enough anxiety to visit a doctor, there are some simple things that you can do to help your problem right from your own home.
There are several things that you can do for your anxiety – as long as it isn’t severe enough to be treated by a doctor or qualified mental health professional. If your anxiety isn’t so severe that it is getting in the way of your normal everyday life, there are several home remedies that you can try to help with your problem.
First of all, you can try good old exercise. Exercise will not only help you to feel better about your body, but exercise increases the amount of serotonin that your brain produces. Serotonin is the chemical in your body that produces good feelings in the brain.
So, when you are feeling particularly anxious, jump on the treadmill, take a walk outside, or go play your favourite sport. It will increase your serotonin levels and also take your mind off of your anxiety for a while. Thinking of other things will make you far healthier both mentally and physically.
Another home remedy for anxiety is to take a dietary supplement to help you feel better. Some herbs in particular help alleviate the feelings of anxiousness and panic. These herbs include cloves, balm, chamomile, skullcap, orange blossom, valerian root, thyme, wood betony, catnip, hops, passa flora, lime flowers, lavender, and vervain.
You can find such herbs in health stores, grocery store, and pharmacies in the form of capsules or teas. Before you take any of these herbs, however, do check that you aren’t taking any prescription medication with which they will interfere. Your pharmacist or doctor can answer any questions you have concerning this.
One other home remedy for anxiety is a simple one: talking to family and friends. Nothing relieves anxiety by keeping your mind preoccupied with other thoughts. Surrounding yourself with positive, fun people will keep your outlook on life happy and light.
A coffee chat with a friend or a movie outing with a family member can drastically improve mood. Being social with others can do wonders for the mind. And, if you are anxious about something, you can talk to others about it.
Finally, there are several rather simple things you can do to alleviate your anxiety, without having to see a doctor or take prescription medication. For example, taking a long hot shower or a soothing bath can improve your outlook on life.
Taking a time out to enjoy a weekend afternoon or evening will promote positive energy in your mind and body. Doing something that you enjoy or starting a new hobby can bring your mind to other, more peaceful, levels.
Help For Teen Suicide And Depression
Life is a wonderful gift. It is precious and each individual is irreplaceable. A child and youth have their whole life ahead of them. Suicide robs the world of a precious life. It is one of the primary causes of death among teens. The Centres for Disease Control demonstrates that after accident and homicide, it is the third leading cause of death Children also can be victims of suicide and suicide is the fourth leading cause of death among children.
There are many factors involved in the suicide or the suicidal preoccupations of children and teens. Children need love and nurturing. Teens need a secure environment and strong emotional attachments. Oppression from any number of sources can be more than some children and teens can handle and they might choose to “opt out”. If a child or teen feels as if “no one cares” or no one pays attention to them, then when combined with other circumstances, this can lead to suicide.
Certainly, depression can be involved in a large percentage of teen and child suicides. Treating prevention is more than prescribing an antidepressant. The causes for depression are many and varied and there is no, no miracle pill, as Prozac was once thought to be. (Prozac is the only antidepressant which is authorized by the FDA to treat depression in children).
Some psychiatrists who have written on the subject have described antidepressants as a “stop gap,” something to help someone through a crisis, until the underlying issues can be addressed, but that it should not be a lifestyle drug.
Many in the medical profession, however, take the attitude, “take two of these and see me in the morning”. This is a dangerous philosophy towards mental health, that is, treatment based solely on the “medical model”. Identify and disorder and prescribe the “appropriate” medication.
Often times, when child abuse or trauma is not involved, there can be lifestyles which lead to depression or that make those who are pre-genetically disposed more susceptible to depression. In the cases of teens and children, there can be a number of factors involved, in which positive lifestyle changes can be of benefit in overcoming thoughts of depression and suicide.
a. The Role of Mental Health Professionals
This is no way detracts from the role that mental health professionals have in assisting those who do have thoughts of suicide or major depression. There is an important role that these play. Family counselling can be of much value, as no individual in a family is single unit.
Interpersonal therapy or “talk therapy” for children and teens can be of assistance to them, and has proven to be an especially effective therapy for some teens and children who are going through crises.
Cognitive behavioural therapy endeavours to help someone, including children and teens, to develop a positive “can do” mental attitude, to change one’s thoughts towards oneself from “I can’t” to “I can,” from “I’m no good,” “I’m worthless,” to a realistic and positive view of oneself.
To a certain extent, success depends on the skill of the therapist. And, also, parents and others involved, including an older child or teen, need to feel comfortable with the therapist and there needs to be some sort of “connection” in their communication. Don’t be afraid to change to another pair of shoes that is a better fit, when utilizing the services of a psychologist or therapist.
The visits to the psychologist or therapist itself can become a source of stress to the child or youth, if it is not the right fit. So, feel your child out, find out how they feel about the sessions. Social workers also, can be a source of support for children and teens in school and otherwise.
b. Depression and The Media
Children and teens need have a realistic and positive view of themselves. They need to appreciate that they have worth, as well as have evidence of this. If there is a strong media influence in their lives, and they spend much of their time watching television and movies, whereby they are entertained by professional actors, dancers, talented people, “beautiful people,” but they themselves don’t’ have any significant achievements in their life, then a child or teen can begin to compare themselves to “Hannah Montana” as an example.
How can any child or teen compare to the success of such a celebrity. Images of Barbie, the perfect body, and celebrities, become part of the subconscious of the child. If their body is less than ideal, then it can set them up for self-loathing, which can lead to a host of psychological battles, including suicidal ideation.
Of course, there is no one isolated issue that one can point to, but rather, it is generally, a lifestyle pattern, that can lead itself to the type of mental “soil” which is conducive to the fermentation and growth of suicidal ideation, self-loathing, or lack of self esteem.
Parents, then, need to be very careful, from little, in what they allow their children to play with in the way of toys, as well as what they allow their children to watch on television. High School Musical, for one, is entertaining, but who really can measure up to these celebrities in terms of beauty and talent? This is just one facet of a many-faceted issue in mental health with children and teens.
c. Other Positive Lifestyle Habits for Children and Teens
Children, who show artistic ability or interest, also benefit from time spent in this recreation. Seeing a piece of art that they have produced, can give tangible evidence of their self worth. Some city museums sponsor inexpensive art programs for children and youth. This provides a positive reference point for children.
Additionally, parents and guardians should endeavour to also speak positively about the child. Words are a powerful influence on a child or teen’s self-perception. Attention to a child or teen’s spiritual needs is also of much importance.
Nutrition is also a matter that needs to be given attention for many children and teens. Eating three healthful meals a day is of much importance for a strong and healthy physical body and mind.
One of the leading causes of death among teens is teen suicide. In fact, it is considered to be, according to The Centres for Disease Control, the third leading cause of death, behind accidents and homicide, of youths and young adults ages 15 to 24.
Additionally, suicide is the fourth leading cause of death for children between the ages of 10 and 14. Certainly, both parents and educators and professionals in the health field are concerned for teens that might have thoughts of suicide and want to do all they can to help.
Help For A Child To Cope Up With Anxiety
Our society is moving swiftly along with time, it becomes more and more competitive as every phase of our life unfolds. First, we learn to familiarize the alphabets, and then we move to our professions–the rollercoaster of life just keeps on rolling around.
The world is requiring too much time for all of our pursuits, but as we enter the life of building our own family, we should not forget to devote some time to them, to the child most especially.
Today, most of the parents are both working for their families living that often times they tend to neglect a part of their responsibility to their child – spending quality time with them–a time for caring and establishing a close and great relationship with them, and not just providing them with material things such as toys.
Your time as a parent is important to them considering that children, like adults, also feel some form of anxiety. Your child may experience this anxiety as they face their daily life in school, in his school performance (both academically and socially), and it is in these moments where your close relationship with your child will pay off.
Parents with a close bond with their child let the child knows that they can come to them in times when they are needed, especially if they are in trouble. They will not be afraid to show off their feelings, no matter what it is. And most importantly, this lets them know that they are loved, hence, lightening the burden of the child as he go through to his own pursuits.
As parents, always try to remember that your child will need your time more than life’s luxuries. It is better to spend your time in developing the child’s self-confidence and self-respect in you since this will assist your child to cope up with anxiety, rather than spend it in earning more money to pay for superficial materials like toys.
If you will observe, the families nowadays tend to live in a lesser stable situation. Parents divorce, and often a child blame themselves for this or they may be affected the other way around, hence, leading to the feeling of circumstantial anxiety.
As a parent you are the first one who can help your child to deal with his anxiety. The following are several ideas that could help you to assist your child in alleviating his anxiety:
- Establish a strong and affectionate relationship with your child. As much as possible spend some time everyday with your child. Build a communication between you and him; you can do this by making special family moments like playing sports, or cooking together. Here, their self-confidence is being established as well as their abilities in solving their problems.
- Help your child discover his other talents and help them develop it. Take note that excessive pressure on one definite area like sports or science may lead to your child’s anxiety.
- Teach your child on how he will deal with peer pressure or bullying at school. You can share them your own experience. Let them know that they can ask for help in school.
- Let your extended family be involved in your social gatherings, they will act as your child’s support group and will help your child to increase his self-confidence.
- Give your child a reward in all of his pursuits such as his perseverance, or for exerting his best on something, do this no matter what the result is.
Sumanta Mandal is involved in healthcare market research since 2008. He is passionate about herbal health, organic health and alternative medicines. He has written many articles on various health care topics.