There are many people who are suffering from ailments that affect their daily lives. Some are physical conditions like a disease while others can be troubles affecting the mind. For those mental and emotional struggles, besides therapy, the most common remedy is thought to be medication. Mental conditions like depression are commonly treated with medicines. Antidepressants and other mood regulators are what people turn to in order to feel better. But there are a few downsides to choosing medication.
Firstly, the list of side effects can be quite long and some medicines will cause poor reactions. Others might even trigger new symptoms that also require fixing. And what’s worse, sometimes the medications just don’t work at all. This might make having depression seem extremely difficult but there are other ways to treat it without medication.
Fixing depression generally takes more than just taking pills and there are other, healthier alternatives. Here are reasons why you don’t actually need medication to fix depression.
Why Medication Doesn’t Work?
There is no instant fix for depression and medication is not always the answer. Antidepressant side effects include loss of sexual energy, suicide, depressive episodes, weight gain, and hopelessness. For some people suffering from treatment-resistant depression, medicines just don’t work as their bodies reject the drugs. In certain studies, those taking placebos for their ailments showed improvement. Illnesses like depression are very personal and the same treatment cannot work for everyone. .
Change Your Diet
It might be something you’ve heard a million times but really, what you put into your body can have massive effects. It can lead to poor eating habits. Over or undereating can contribute to even worse feelings and even negative thoughts about our bodies. Having control of your food can help you feel better. If possible, choose foods that have high fatty acid content, like fish, as the omega-3s have been shown to ease depression. If you don’t like fish, you supplement pure fish oil.
If your depression has you feeling listless or totally unmotivated, setting goals can help you feel better. One of the more common parts of depression is feeling as if you can’t accomplish anything—even just getting out of bed. Combat this by setting goals, starting from small daily goals to bigger ones. As you complete them, your sense of accomplishment will improve and you will begin to feel better.
The benefits of meditation have been long known as ways to relieve stress but they can also help ease the pain of depression. It seems simple and it can be if you dedicate time and focus. There is a multitude of ways to incorporate meditation into your daily routines. On multiple platforms, downloadable apps are available. Other exercises don’t require any technological accessories at all.
Beating Seasonal Depression
Every year, the changing of the seasons brings discomfort and increased unhappiness to some folks. This is referred to as Seasonal Affective Disorder (SAD). It’s believed that the change in weather and sunlight exposure lead to a hormone imbalance. Restoring your moods during this time, generally during winter months, can be done without medication. You can beat your seasonal depression by increasing your rate of exercise or getting more light. Getting more exposure to light can be done by using fluorescent lights that mimic sunlight.
Go Outside More
Sunlight is one of the best natural ways to lift your spirits. When we think of ideal vacation spots, we imagine beaches with white sand and lots of sunlight. Sunlight has been shown to increase dopamine release and reception in our brains. Dopamine is one of the brain’s chemicals that help us feel happy. Getting out of busy, city-like environments and experiencing nature can quickly lower stress hormones.
Do Something Fun or New
Feeling like you’re stuck in a rut can be hard on your mental health. It can be hard but try to do something different, particularly something you enjoy. For example, if you like cooking, try a cooking class or a new restaurant. You could even volunteer in your community.
One of the hallmarks of depression is being unable to sleep or sleeping too much. What matters is setting and following a regular sleep schedule and also getting quality sleep. Avoid taking naps or veering off your schedule. Make your room distraction-free, even if that means getting rid of your electronics.
Depression can totally take over your life and it might seem endless. Taking medication can be helpful to some but there are pros and cons to doing so. Choosing medication-free, alternative remedies to depression by changing your behavior and thought patterns can be seriously effective. While we can’t control how we feel all of the time, you can learn to fight your depression on your own. Feeling better isn’t only found in a bottle. You can take charge of your moods and treatment.