Why You Should Seek Treatment for Depression
Depression Treatment | A staggering percentage of South Africans live with depression today, and yet only a fraction of those are receiving adequate depression treatment for the condition. Whatever the reason may be for the lack of depression help, it’s clear that the condition can be so debilitating, it affects all aspects of life – work, school, and family. The decision to go untreated can therefore severely impact your quality of living, and it’s a consequence that’s entirely avoidable. Speaking to the right people to find the best way forward is the first step you can take in achieving a life of balance and well-being. If you’re living with depression, treatment can be as simple as reaching out to the relevant mental health specialists. In this age of holistic therapy and medicine, there is no reason why you shouldn’t be living your best life right now.
Get in touch with a professionalContact us today if you or a loved one needs professional help with depression.
What is Depression?
Depression is often defined as a medical illness that has a negative effect on the way a person thinks, feels, and acts. Adult and teenage depression is becoming increasingly common, and is so much more than simply feeling sad all the time. The pervasive nature of the illness has both an emotional and physical impact whereby your ability to function in everyday life is greatly impeded. Left untreated, this condition can cause you to lose your job, do poorly at school, and continually fail at maintaining healthy relationships. Depression treatment should be sought as soon as possible to achieve a sense of control in managing the condition, and to have a chance at a fulfilling and satisfying life.
Symptoms of Depression
Feelings of sadness and low self-worth are the key symptoms of depression that impact your life, and lead to other symptoms that help specialists identify when something is wrong. For instance, excessive fatigue or lethargy, loss of interest in activities you used to enjoy, and recurring thoughts of death and suicide are all run-on symptoms from the initial feelings of extreme sadness and negative image of oneself. Additional signs that you’re dealing with more than sadness include, loss of appetite, insomnia, inability to focus, and prominent indecisiveness. When you get help for depression, the presence of these symptoms and the severity with which they arise will inform the course of treatment followed.
Causes of Depression
Depression is an illness that doesn’t discriminate and can affect anyone, starting from teen years all the way through old age. This makes it difficult to pin-point a singular cause of the condition, but studies have shown that a combination of factors could be the likely reason behind it – brain chemistry, genetics, individual personality, and environmental issues. Treatment for depression always starts with obtaining a ‘whole picture view’ of the above factors, so that a clearer understanding of the condition can be achieved. When you understand the underlying risk factors feeding your depression, mapping a path to treatment becomes easy.
Treatment for Depression
Psychotherapy, or ‘talk therapy’, is one of the most common types of treatment for depression. In mild cases, therapy on its own is enough to help an individual manage their condition. When instances of depression is more severe, therapy is often used in conjunction to anti-depressant medication. Psychotherapy can be done on a one-one-one basis, or in a group, depending on the specific needs of the person involved. Cognitive Behavioral Therapy is another form of therapy used in treating depression, and looks at helping an individual recognize and correct problems in behavior and thought patterns. Therapy often forms part of depression treatment plans at private clinics and psychiatric hospitals.
Since brain chemistry plays a significant role in emotions, drugs that specifically modify the chemicals within the brain are prescribed to help with depression. There is a wide selection of anti-depressant medications available, and because of their targeted affect on the brain and often habit-forming nature, they are only prescribed by a psychiatrist or other adequately qualified mental health professional. These drugs help regulate the chemicals in your brain to decrease intense feelings of sadness, and thereby work to alleviate the general symptoms of depression as well. People on anti-depressants are advised to go for maintenance checks to ensure their dosage is correct, and the medication is not harming them in any way.
We’ve looked at the immense benefits when it comes to exercise and mental health, and the same applies when coping with depression. Getting your heart rate up with regular aerobic exercise is one of the best ways to treat depression. During exercise, your brain releases endorphins that makes you feel good, and relieves stress. Exercising through depression also leads to improved sleep, and better concentration too. Lack of appetite in depression often means eating all the wrong foods, and this does more harm than good. Follow a healthy nutrition plan so your mind and body gets what it needs to function at its best.
What Happens when Depression is not Treated?
People tend to shy away from getting help with depression because of the stigma attached to mental health problems. There is a lot of shame involved, and they often see it as a personal weakness. When depression is not treated, the symptoms will become worse, and depressive episodes will last for longer. Extended periods of dark thoughts sometimes lead to suicide, and feelings of inadequacy, lethargy, and intense sadness ends up costing people their careers and relationships with loved ones. When depression treatment is ignored, you also run the risk of developing a drug or alcohol addiction, and there is mounting evidence that physical health and depression are closely linked. People with untreated depression may suffer from heart disease that leads to heart attacks, chronic pain like headaches and back ache, and also strokes. Following bouts of serious illness, there is a higher risk of death than with people who manage stress in a healthy way.
Finding Help for Depression
You shouldn’t let stigma get in the way of seeking treatment for depression. Even mild cases shouldn’t be ignored, because things can escalate without warning and this makes effective treatment more complicated. If you think you might be in need of depression help, speaking to your doctor is a good place to start. They will be able to help you reach out to mental health professionals who can guide you regarding the best treatment plan. At ZwavelStream we specialize in depression treatment, and provide our clients with a safe, healthy environment in which to regain balance in their lives. Therapy, medication, and a highly skilled staff contingent are available to see you on your road to wellness. Every case is treated with the utmost confidentiality, and treatment is planned on a client-specific basis. Contact us for more information about how you can get the help you need.