Your idea of depression may not be what it seems.
For many years and for many people, depression had a face or, better worded, we may have had an impression of a depressed person. However, since the mental wellness revolution, society is advancing conversations about mental health. We have a better understanding of mental illness and now recognize that mental illness can affect anyone at any time and is more widespread than we first realized. Now more than ever, people are sharing their experiences with mental illness and are talking more openly about their stresses, sadness, fluctuations in mood and their struggles with sleep. The mental health revolution has made it a bit easier for those suffering from mental illness to seek help and acceptance.
Did you know?
Depression may have triggers- You may seemingly go through most of your life without having any signs of depression. However, depression has different triggers, and a traumatic event later in life could be the catalyst that causes depressive symptoms to begin showing up at any time and at any age.
If you have a history of depression in your family, while you may feel like you are fortunate not to have any form of mental illness, all this can change once you have reached a certain age or should something within your normal pattern of living become altered.
Your genetic makeup may provide some clues to your predisposition to mental illness and why one person can become depressed, but another person does not. However, this is only a factor and not a sure thing. Having a family member that has a mental illness is something to be aware of so you can watch for signs, but only 37% of people with a family history of mental illness are likely to suffer from mental illness themselves.
Depression has physiological effects, too, meaning it affects the body. It can cause headaches, stomach disorders, sleeping disturbances, and even unexplained aches and pains.
There is some truth to the saying,” I have a gut feeling. There is a very strong connection between gut health and mental health, with each one causing an imbalance with the other. The gut is responsible for producing most of the serotonin you need,” the happy hormone,” so if you suffer from digestive disorders, it can lead to signs of depression. The opposite is also true. If you suffer from depression, you are more likely than not to feel the physical effects in your gut.
Depression may also be linked to other health problems, such as diabetes, heart disease, arthritis and some forms of inflammatory disease. This makes sense when you consider that these diseases can also affect the quality of a person’s life.
You can manage some forms of depression with exercise! Exercise helps to stimulate endorphins which can help you to feel better, especially if done in moderation.
What you eat or do not eat can increase your risk for depression and even increase depressive episodes. Be mindful of your dietary choices to ensure you are getting an ample supply of the vitamins and minerals you need to help manage the stress response.
Managing depression through natural supplementation under proper guidance or through prescribed drugs is the only cog in the wheel of healing. Talking with someone and reaching out to a professional therapist can be helpful in providing skills to recognize and manage depression.
If you or anyone you know is showing signs of depression, do not hesitate to seek help. You are not alone!