Depression: 6 Ways To Deal With A Depressive Episode Effectively

Have you ever felt sad and depressed that you can’t will yourself to function well in your daily life? Or are you one of those people who feel unmotivated and unhappy while doing the things you loved before? If so, then there’s a chance that you’re in a depressive state.

Depression

Depression

Although it’s common for many people to feel gloomy and dejected at times, dealing with such persistent emotions for a long time may indicate severe mental conditions. Particularly, a person who often deals with tiredness, changes in appetite, feeling of worthlessness, and recurrent thoughts of death may be experiencing a depressive episode.

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If you’re starting to notice these red flags in your mood and behavior lately, then this might be the right time to seek professional help, as you might be suffering from a depressive episode. For instance, you can consider asking for help from institutions that offer mental health treatments and psychological interventions like Alvarado Parkway Institute and other similar centers. You can also check out this article for more information on depressive episodes and tips on how to deal with them.

Depressive Episodes: Things To Know 

While some people tend to ignore the early signs of depression, doing that may not be helpful to their mental health; and may even cause lingering impacts on their overall well-being. Similarly, it could be challenging to get through a depressive episode, especially for someone who has lesser knowledge about it.

To know more about what a depressive episode is, here’s a list of some facts about it:

  • Intrinsically, a depressive episode refers to a condition characterized by mild to extreme feelings of sadness and low mood, as well as other symptoms of depression that may last for at least two weeks or more.
  • People struggling with depressive episodes may also feel symptoms that usually occur within several weeks or months at a time. On some occasions, depressive periods may even last for several years, depending on the severity of one’s condition.
  • In some cases, people suffer from a depressive episode due to many factors, which may include dysfunction in one’s brain’s mood regulation and mechanism, genetic vulnerability, various stressors, medication side effects, and other triggers.
  • Some of the early signs of depressive episodes may include hopelessness, helplessness, extreme feelings of sadness, anxiety, irritability, worthlessness, guilt, fatigue, restlessness, and frustration.
  • They may also experience drastic changes in appetite, loss of interest in things or anhedonia, inattentiveness, changes in sleep patterns, inexplicable aches, and intrusive thoughts.
  • To be diagnosed with a depressive state, people must encounter at least two core symptoms of depression, such as loss of interest or low mood for at least two weeks. They must also experience several other signs to be classified with depressive episodes.

Read Also: Academic Stress Causing Depression and Anxiety Disorders in College Students

Triggers Of Depressive Episodes

Although numerous technological innovations and medical advances have been developed over the past decades to mitigate its risks, many people are still having a hard time dealing with a depressive episode. It has also become more difficult to identify the triggers of depression due to the differences in one’s mental state.

But despite such challenges, there are certain patterns that a depressed person may encounter while in a depressive episode. It could also help to learn a thing or two about the things that could trigger a depressive state. These may include the following:

  • Death of a loved one: One of the most common triggers of a depressive episode is the loss of a loved one. In most cases, people often have a hard time coping with the loss of their loved one, especially when it came unexpectedly. Although the duration of their recovery may vary depending on the level of grief they experience, many people become more at risk of depressions during these times.
  • Social isolation: Aside from an unexpected death of a loved one, another prominent factor that could trigger a depressive state is social isolation. While some people may prefer to be alone most of the time, such behavior could lead to feelings of detachment from other people and the inability to form bonds with others. Due to this, they may experience greater feelings of loneliness and are more likely to grapple with depression.
  • Rejection: Although some people may easily disregard rejections from other people, many often have a hard time dealing with them. Particularly, a study shows that people who often encounter repeated failure, rejection, and desolation become more susceptible to anxiety, social withdrawal, and depression.
  • Hormonal imbalance: Believe it or not, hormonal shifts may also contribute to the occurrence of depressive episodes among people, especially in women. Not just that, but pregnancy, menopause, and postpartum depression could result in a depressive state.

Read Also: University of Michigan: Irregular Sleep Patterns Could Lead to Depression

Coping With Depressive Episodes

Throughout one’s struggle with a depressive episode, it’s important to know that failures and relapses are common. It’s also common to occasionally feel like there’s no hope for recovery anymore. However, note that there are plenty of available options and alternatives you can consider to effectively obtain your purposes.

Particularly, here’s a list of some simple yet efficient ways you can do to handle depressive episodes and get through them:

  1. Do Physical Activities

If you’re wondering about the proper measures to take to better deal with a depressive state, some of the simplest and most efficient alternatives you can consider include doing regular exercises and engaging in physical activities. Usually, depressed people may choose to spend their time doing extensive physical activities and workout routines to let out their negative emotions and thoughts.

Aside from keeping your body in shape, doing this alternative may also significantly improve your mental health and keep you occupied. Also, most people with depression are more likely to exhaust themselves through workout routines whenever their intrusive thoughts and unpleasant emotions kick in.

If you’re wondering about its advantages, doing regular activities and workout routines may help boost the production of endorphin in one’s brain, which is responsible for mood regulation and the prevention of relapses.

  1. Eat Healthily

Besides bolstering your physical health, another essential aspect you must not forget about is your nutritional intake, especially if you’re in a depressive episode. Specifically, symptoms of depression may manifest in your body, particularly in your gastrointestinal (GI) tract and eating habits. So, it’s a must to keep an eye on your eating patterns. Ideally, you must focus on consuming healthy and nutritious foods, as well as lessen the intake of sugar and alcohol.

While this may not be the same for most people, several depressed people tend to use alcohol as their coping mechanism against depression. However, doing such things could affect their health and wellness in many ways. That’s why it’d be better to create and follow a well-rounded diet to maintain your physical and mental health.

You may also consider taking on proteins, vitamin-enriched foods, high-fiber foods, and other hearty meals.

  1. Promote Proper Mindfulness

Another helpful alternative you can consider when dealing with a depressive episode is doing meditation and other relaxation techniques. Although some people may view this aspect as trivial compared to other things, incorporating mindfulness into your daily routine could significantly boost your mental well-being.

To begin with, meditation routines are said to relieve early signs of anxiety, stress, and depression. This alternative could also help people avoid the risks of mental disorders. Most importantly, meditation is known for enhancing one’s mental health, regulating blood pressure, and improving cognitive functions. Incorporating meditation practices in your lifestyle may also be the key to your recovery from a depressive episode.

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  1. Talk To Your Loved Ones

Many experts believe that moral support and motivation from other people could efficiently serve as the greatest driving force that could help depressed people to cope with their condition. Needless to say, a person could feel more motivated to pursue recovery from a depressive episode if they have people believing in them.

Similarly, these people may strive to heal faster if there are people who are with them during their darkest times. Words of encouragement and positive remarks may also help to keep people motivated and driven. In such aspects, it’s best to talk to your loved ones about your condition and seek their support so you can better get through a depressive episode. You may also speak with a support group, a group of people who may share the same experiences as you do.

  1. Discover New Hobbies

When in a depressive episode, it’s essential to keep yourself busy and occupied to prevent intrusive thoughts from resurfacing. In that way, it’d be better to make your lone time meaningful by spending it doing things that you like.

In particular, you can consider trying new hobbies and focusing on other diversions to keep your head off your negative thoughts and emotions. Through this, you have better chances of finding your purposes in life and keeping you busy at the same time.

  1. Ask For Professional Help

It’s difficult for many people to admit to themselves that they’re suffering from a depressive episode, let alone get through it. While the possibility of recovery may vary depending on the people’s tolerance to stressors, it could be challenging to cope with such mental health issues.

If that’s your concern, worry not as there are plenty of options you can consider to cope with your condition. Particularly, you can consider seeking help from registered psychologists, psychiatrists, and counselors if none of the things stated above seemed to work. Through these people, you can effectively manage the symptoms of a depressive episode, prevent relapses, and recover eventually.

Read Also: Chinese Study Shows a Connection Between the Intestinal Flora and Depression

Final Thoughts

If you’re dealing with a depressive episode, then seeking help from reliable mental health institutions and rehabilitation centers may be beneficial for you. It’d also be better to consult a psychologist or psychiatrist to know the severity of your condition. These people may also introduce you to certain types of therapy and treatments, as well as psychotherapy, counseling, and psychological interventions that could help treat your condition.

Although it could be scary at first, taking the initiative to consult a professional and asking for their help could effectively help you recover faster from your depressive state.

References

Relationship Between Loneliness, Psychiatric Disorders, and Physical Health? A Review on the Psychological Aspects of Loneliness

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