Saturday, May 4, 2013

Short And Long Term Effects Of Depression - Get The Facts

1 in 20 Americans suffer from depression, so it's important to know the short and long term effects of depression. Read on to find out more about how the short and long term effects of depression may be affecting YOU.

  • 1. Common short term effects. In most cases sufferers will experience the following symptoms - loss of energy, loss of enjoyment and enthusiasm in life, loss of short term memory, listlessness and lethargy, find concentrating difficult, inability to show affection. In extreme cases people have suffered decreased sexual drive, which has resulted in male impotence and cessation of periods in women.

  • 2. Long term effects on your health. If you don't get help, both short and long term effects of depression can have devastating effects on your health. In the worst cases sufferers have experienced the following... worsening of short term depression symptoms, chronic fatigued, constant aches and pains (psychosomatic), increased susceptibility to illnesses, weakened immune system, agoraphobia and panic attacks (anxiety).

  • 3. The short and long term effects of depression on your emotional state. If untreated your emotional state will almost certainly suffer. In the worst cases sufferers have experienced the following... not wanting to leave the house, no longer wanting to take part in social activities or seeing friends, lack of sexual drive and affection, which can cause strain on relationships, no longer taking pride in appearance, self harm and suicide attempts.

  • 4. How to lead a healthy normal life. It is easier than ever to live with depression. There are so many options available, all you need to do is find the right one for you. Medication has helped changed some suffers lives, allowing them to avoid the short and long term effects of depression and to live normal healthy lives. Medication is not always the answer but it can be a great way to regain control over your life. Counselling and therapy will help you to come to terms with your depression and give you greater understand and control.

I hope I have helped you better understand the short and long term effects of depression and realise that you don't have to suffer from these effects. There is a lot of support available, so you no longer deal with depression alone. For more information, help and guidance on the short and long term effects of depression click on the links below.

Water As A Natural Remedy For Depression

One of the most effective and arguably the most important but often overlooked natural remedies for depression is water. Water makes up 60% of our body, and over 70% of our brain tissue. Water is the most essential nutrient for the human body and brain and it is logical that a deficiency in water can lead to all kinds of medical issues, including depression symptoms. Unfortunately, many individuals seem to take water for granted.

Whenever people have common ailments or symptoms of illnesses such as fever and flu, the basic advice given by their doctor is to "get plenty of rest and drink lots of water". Most people follow the first instruction and get their adequate rest, but for some reason place less importance on drinking enough water.

How much is enough water? You might have heard of the recommendation to drink 8 glasses of water daily. This is a myth. It does not take into account your environment (the hotter the area you live in, the more water you need), your gender, physical size and your activity levels. Bigger-sized individuals and pregnant or nursing women will need more water than others.

Some people advocate simply drinking when you feel thirsty (and similarly, eating only when you are hungry), that is, to simply trust your body's signals. This can work for some individuals, but many others might not find it workable, perhaps because their body simply doesn't send the right signals at the right time.

The best way to tell if you are properly hydrated is to look at your urine color. Pale yellow or straw-colored urine is considered ideal. Colorless urine usually means you are overhydrated and will have to go to the restroom every few minutes. Dark yellow means you might be dehydrated.

While overhydration is not typically an issue in most cases, recent research has suggested hyponatremia (low sodium in blood), which can cause swelling, including of the brain, as a potential, albeit fairly uncommon risk. This can cause seizures and lead to coma, and may even be fatal. Overhydration may also dilute the benefits of vitamin supplements that you are taking.

If you are constantly passing out dark-colored urine, you should try aiming for a lighter-colored urine by drinking more plain water. Eating plenty of fruits and vegetables can provide plenty of benefits including helping you to stay hydrated, as such foods typically have high water content. Stay away from or reduce your intake of coffee, beer or carbonated drinks. Those drinks may increase your frequency of urination, but actually have a dehydrating effect on your body. Cutting down on such harmful substances is one of the best natural remedies for depression.

Note that some medication, vitamin tablets and other conditions such as pregnancy can cause your urine to be a darker shade or even completely differently-colored. While not typically a cause for concern, it is always best to check with your doctor in such cases.

The smell of your urine, too, can indicate your body's health. A sweet odor can indicate kidney malfunction or too much sugar in your blood. A pungent odor could be problematic, but it can also simply be a result of what you ate (especially foods such as asparagus) and not a cause for concern. Healthy, pale-colored urine should typically have only a slight odor.

Considering how essential water is to the basic functions of our body and our brain, it is somewhat surprising more people don't look to changing their drinking habits when looking for a natural remedy for any kind of ailments. If you are not already drinking enough water and staying adequately hydrated at all times, it should be one of the first and most important natural remedies for depression you should try. Remember that even if it does not work for your depression, water is still essential for everyone and can help prevent many other ailments.

Handling a Depressed Person

The person who is suffering from depression, also effects the surroundings, and everyone who comes in contact do feel an impact. Therefore it becomes very important and necessary to help the person to come out of the problem, thus making the journey of life easy and meaningful. There are three main steps which come in the way to improve the state of depressed person.

Recognizing the problem

The very first step to help any way to a sick person is to recognize the root cause of the problem. Though it is not easy, but still it is far much easier to find the problem as compared to the person concerned. Sometimes it is very difficult for the patient to actually know what had happened to him. If one notice a marked and lack of enthusiasm, negative thinking, disturbed sleep and eating pattern, perhaps an increase in alcohol consumption and loss of libido, then one should consider depression as the cause.

Understanding the Problem

It is very important that one has to understand the problem as lot of the anguish surrounding the disease is caused by frustration engendered by misunderstanding. Yes, there is a fact related to depressed person who is not responding, and whose behavior is strange and erratic and refusing to seek help is very daunting and struggle full.

There are a few very important facts one need to recognize if one is dealing with a depressed person:

- Depressed people are more dangerous to themselves then to their surroundings.
- One should be aware that teenagers and children can also experience depression.
- Depression is an illness like cancer or heart disease, there should be no shame or blame attached to being depressed.
- The depressed people cannot take in what the other person say or react usefully to help and advice in the way they normally would.
- The depression sufferer cannot cheer themselves up more nor do they snap out of it.
- One should always be aware that there are very successful treatments for alleviating the symptoms of depression and now with EPA they don't involve side effects.
- One should actually work toward the root cause of the problem to save depressant from the subsequent impact on relationship, both at home and at work as if the depression goes unrecognized it can be devastating.


The best solution to any problem is to recognize the problem then finding the solution and finally helping the facts and solutions to improve the state of person who is suffering from the phase of depression. As the person who is feeling depressed will take very long to even admit the fact that is actually suffering from the disease. They may not response at once, but keep trying, or get someone else close to them and let them know how they are feeling and that they have your full support.

The most difficult task is to recognize the depression in children and teenagers, not at least because you don't expect them to get the illness so young. But one needs to be very careful to actually find the difference between a sulky mono syllabic teenager who refuses to eat what you cook or get out of bed or function in a way that you consider appropriate. If you think someone you know is in danger of harming themselves, you must seek help immediately by contacting their practitioner and explaining the problem. Thus making life seems more relaxed and beautiful to them.

Happiness Quotes To Enlighten Your Existence

Quotes particularly happiness quotes inspire us to live a better life.

Philosophers and poets have talked about life in different ways and have defined happiness in many different words. Their concept towards happiness can be referred to as positive and soul invoking. Quotes on happiness from these great people are not superficial rather instill the human heart with a sense of satisfaction towards self existence.

These quotes are usually so strong that they can even change the negative attitude into down right positive. Happiness has this effect on us that can change our simplest existence into a satisfying affair. Joy is something that comes from the innermost senses and thus happy quotes also touch the heart to instill that delight and satisfaction which is unparalleled and profound. A happy soul can stand through the toughest times and situation. Happiness however should not be searched in materialistic aspects of existence, instead real happiness lies within self.

One of the biggest enemies of true happiness as reflected in the philosophers quotes are jealousy, hatred, drawing comparisons and dissatisfaction. When we build this picture in our minds that we have failed and haven't lived up to our expectations there always is a sense of guilt that eats away our real happiness.

Happiness as the poets speak lies in small things that invoke happiness like the smile of a baby, a beautiful flower, summer rains, and many other priceless entities that touch our heart to make us happy. Quotes about happiness are also very simple yet very true with nothing materialistic about the joy they reflect. Those who have a negative self image or continuously feel depressed can take immense help from regularly reading some nice happiness quotes.

To get out of this kind behavior pattern one can look for more quotes on happiness available online. Happiness quotes admirably invoke true happiness and give a positive direction to the depressed mind. They endow you with words of wisdom to reflect and ponder over. When you comprehend the deeper sense and meaning of the quotes you appreciate how misguided you have been. If you live your life according to other terms you will never be happy. You have to live by your own rules and be satisfied with your self-accomplishments.

Bipolar Disorder - Getting Health Insurance If You Have Bipolar Disorder

Bipolar disorder, also known as manic depression, manic-depressive disorder, or bipolar affective disorder, is a mental health condition in which sufferers experience alternative periods of elation and depression. This condition is expensive to treat because it requires daily medication and frequent doctor's visits. Unfortunately, if bipolar disorder is a pre-existing medical condition, patients may not be able to receive coverage. Even if this disorder was diagnosed after enrolling in a health insurance plan, patients may run into problems. However, getting coverage is possible. Here's what the insurance company will want to know.

A health insurance company will first want to know if you are employed. People with Bipolar Disorder pose a significant financial risk to an insurance company due to the sheer amount of doctor's visits and medication required. They need to know if you can pay the premiums as well as anything they cannot cover. Usually all you will need to do is provide the company with your employer's information; they will then verify your employment by contacting your place of work. Make sure to let your boss know that the insurance company may be calling so he or she will not be caught off guard.

The insurance company will also need to know exactly when you were diagnosed as well as when the last major episode occurred. There may be a formal request for your medical records, in which case you will need to supply them with the name of your physician. However, if you have not been hospitalized recently, this may not be an issue. Basically, the insurance company wants to know the chances that you might require an inpatient or outpatient hospital visit. They will do this by looking at your medical history, progress, and number of hospital visits.

Finally, the health insurance company will want to know exactly what medication you are taking as well as how you are responding to it. Again, they are assessing your risk to determine how much you will cost them. Do you need a lot of medication to function? Have you been through many different types of medication to find one that worked? They will take a look at how well you have been progressing since you started medication in order to determine your overall stability. Showing the insurance company that your Bipolar Disorder poses few risks will greatly improve your chances of getting approved for coverage.

If you need assistance in locating particular coverages at a pre-determined price, we can help you save up to 50% on your health insurance monthly premium.

Friday, May 3, 2013

Depression in Retirement

There are many stresses in life that may lead to depression, and growing old can be a key one. One very important for those suffering from depression is to know that it is not normal, and rarely will they come through it without professional help.

In older people, one trigger for depression is difficulty in the transition from a productive working life to retirement. For others, the loss of a spouse can progress from grief to depression, and being the sole caregiver to someone with an illness or disability is responsible.

As we age we experience many disappointments: the death or illness of friends and family, loss of mobility, uncertain financial security, medical bills and so on. These events can lead to depression.

Most people can overcome these obstacles, but for others they may be more significant and, especially if they are compounded, they may seem insurmountable. While a 'sadness' may pass following an event, depression is very deep-seated, and can leave you feeling down, unable to make decisions, with a general feeling of malaise. It affects you both physically and mentally.

Clinical depression is a psychological problem that should not be ignored, but treated as soon as possible with counseling or psychotherapy.

While most older people are content with their lives, as many as three percent of over-65s experience clinical depression. On the bright side however, around 80 percent of them can be successfully treated with psychotherapy. For some medication gives excellent results.

There are several types of clinical depression:

1. Dysthmyia - a type of depression that may persist for a long time before diagnosis.

2. Reactive depression - which occurs after a major loss or in response to a serious life event.

3. Major depression - this serious form of the illness renders the sufferer almost incapable of carrying on everyday life. A person may experience this once in their life, or it may recur. Counseling and medication are often used in combination in this instance.

4. Bipolar - this often referred to as manic-depressive illness and manifests itself as severe mood swings, alternating from extreme highs to lows. Bipolar disorder usually first appears when a person is in their twenties but may not be diagnosed until as late as their fifties.

Some symptoms of depression

If you suspect the following symptoms of yourself or a loved one, you should consult a health professional with your concerns and request an evaluation.

· Loss of pleasure in previously enjoyed activities

· A persistent sad or anxious mood

· Loss of energy

· Sleeping and eating problems

· Uncharacteristic feeling of pessimism

· Feelings of helplessness, worthlessness or guilt

· Unpredictable and excessive crying

· Fractiousness and irritability

· Excessive grief that extends beyond three months

· Extremely 'low' periods followed by excessive 'highs'

· Racing thoughts and fat speech

· Decreased need for sleep

Getting help

The most difficult part of getting help for sufferers is the person themselves. People with depression often believe that it will go away in time, that they can manage it, or that they are too old to change. Others believe there is a stigma attached to having what is essentially a mental illness.

The truth is that it is highly treatable problem and dramatic improvements can be seen in a matter of weeks. Antidepressant medication, psychotherapy, or a combination of the two are the usual methods of treatment, depending on the severity and nature of the illness.

Family doctors, clinics and family medical centers can provide diagnosis and treatment for depression, but a consultation with a psychologist should also form part of the treatment process.

Do remember that feeling depressed, especially in your retirement, is not normal and that any pessimistic or 'empty' feelings that persist for more than a few weeks should be investigated by a health professional.

What Is The Difference Between Mild Depression, Severe Depression and Being Bipolar?

There is a world of difference among mild depression, severe depression, and being bipolar. There are, apparently, different types of depression, and each one requires different types of treatment. Knowing how to differentiate one from the other, therefore, is important in coping with the condition.

Mild Depression

Mild depression is depression of the chronic type of depression. What this means to say is that the feelings of sadness are going on almost every day for no less than two years. The symptoms are mild but should not be taken for granted, nonetheless, as they can, affect many aspects of your life, including your health, and sooner or later, these signs and symptoms can progress to something more severe.

Individuals diagnosed with mild depression are generally described to have:

  • Low energy levels.

  • Reduced appetite.

  • Difficulty sleeping.

  • Low self-esteem.

These manifestations can result in:

  • Over-fatigue.

  • Impaired work performance that can cost you your job.

  • Impaired social relationships.

  • Nutritional deficiencies.

  • Weight loss.

  • Anemia.

  • Impaired immune system.

Treatment of Choice for Mild Depression

The treatment of choice for mild depression is cognitive therapy or behavioral therapy which has the following features or goals:

  • Recognition of negative thoughts and feelings and learning to convert them to positive ones.

  • Gaining control of the situation, rather than the situation controlling you.

  • Encouraging motivation.

In some cases, this form of therapy is coupled with anti-depressants.

Severe Depression:

Severe depression is exactly what it is - depression of the severe kind. Clients diagnosed with severe depression are often called a psychotic case. Why, because the signs and symptoms associated with mild depression occur in greater intensity, and in many cases include hallucinations and delusions.

With severe depression, the client:

  • Is distressed or agitated.

  • Has very low self-esteem.

  • Is socially withdrawn.

  • Fails to take care of him/herself.

  • Hallucinates.

  • May have suicidal thoughts or tendencies.

Treatment of Choice for Severe Depression

Severe depression requires professional treatment. Make sure you engage the services of someone with extensive experience and one you will be comfortable working with. Just to give you an idea, depression of this kind is managed with anti-depressants, psychotherapy, and self-help strategies that include educating yourself, employing anti-stress techniques, deep-breathing, and making lifestyle changes.


Bipolar is depression of a different level, characterized by shifts in mood. You are manic at one point and depressed at another. Individuals with bipolar:

  • Are impulsive. They can go on a spending spree, make unwise investments, engage in gambling and other illicit activities including sex.

  • Are euphoric and restless, and highly irritable during the manic phase. There is an increase in energy levels as well.

  • Have difficulty getting out of bed, during the depressive phase. Feelings of hopelessness and self-pity are intense.

  • May have extreme feelings of guilt, hallucinations, delusions, suicidal thoughts and tendencies.

Treatment of Choice for Bipolar Disorder

Bipolar disorder is very serious and must be approached with extreme caution. Medications for bipolar cannot be bought over-the-counter and must be used only upon doctor's advice. A combination of anti-depressants and psychotherapy is usually recommended, along with a strong support system and some self-help measures. In worse-case scenarios, electro-convulsive therapy may be recommended.

It doesn't matter what type of depression you have. Mild or severe, depression can affect your health and the quality of your life. Don't let depression get the better of you. Don't let it control your life. Talk to a specialist at the first sign or symptom of depression or know how to prevent it with good food, exercise, and the right vitamins (such as the family of B-vitamins, Vitamin C, Vitamin D) and Omega-3 fatty acids.

Venereal Diseases - Are They Punishments From God?

We could answer easily by saying "yes" except for the fact God does not want to see people suffer, and does not arbitrarily punish them. In fact, disease and suffering are not the punishment for sin: "The wages of sin is death" (Romans 6:23), even "the second death" (Revelation 20:14).

The true answer to this question is that venereal diseases are the natural result of sexual promiscuity. A healthy husband and wife can live together all their lives, enjoying sex with each other for many decades, and not get a venereal disease. This is because Venereal diseases are a rife among many immoral people, a kind of natural curse. Have a glimpse about venereal diseases.

The term STD (Sexually transmitted Disease) covers a wide field: not only is the notorious Human Immunodeficient virus (HIV) and gonoccocal infection included but also such infections as syphilis, chancroid, herpes simplex, lice, granuloma inguinale Lymphogranuloma venereal and more important non-specific urethritis. Despite the very remarkable advances that have taken place in the medical field. the prevalence and incidence of sexually transmitted diseases has increased steadily.

The man with a sexually transmitted disease is generally miserable and becomes antisocial. He becomes unreliable both to his wife and doctor because he is ashamed of himself. He becomes a liar to his wife and starts coming home very late claiming to be drunk. in case his wife should ask him for sex. To the woman, STD's especially gonorrhoea and non-specific urethritis, leave a permanent scar. The fallopian tubes get blocked and this can lead to sterility and permanent misery.

Here is a letter written to a well-known newspaper columnist, from a broken-hearted husband:
Dear.... I will never be able to make amends to my wife for what I did to her, but if you choose my letter for your column it might keep someone else from making the same mistake. I'm an average 33-year old man, married for six years. We have one child. One night I went out alone and picked up a nice-looking girl in a bar. Believe me, she looked and acted as nice as any girl I had ever met. She was immaculate and ladylike. That girl gave me gonorrhoea. I, in turn infected my wife with such a severe case that, at 30, she had to have a complete hysterectomy. Now, she'll never be able to have another child and she wanted one so much. The doctor had to tell her the truth and it nearly broke her heart because she had never looked at another man and knew it had to be my fault. She says she's forgiven me, but I don't think I can ever forgive myself. I went out on my wife only once and, God forgive me, it was the most foolish thing I've ever done. (Hating myself).

A noted psychiatrist once described a strange case of syphilis that developed into general paresis (syphilis of the brain). The patient was a real estate lawyer who suddenly appalled his family with behavior very unlike him. While he was at university, twenty years before, he had slipped once into a mistake-he had slept with a prostitute. He had noticed a sore (Chancre) afterwards but it soon disappeared. Soon he married a girl he loved, opened a law firm, had three children, became a deacon in his church and was highly respected in his community. Suddenly, when he was 45, he began to have strange symptoms, behavior that shocked his community. He tried to steal some fishing equipment; he lost interest in his wife and children, began consorting with loose women, made unwise business investments, lost his clients' money as well as his own. He became so confused that he couldn't remember what time it was. Grandiose delusions and silly childish behavior followed. He was mentally ill. The psychiatrist ordered blood tests, and syphilis of the brain was diagnosed by a positive Wasserman blood reaction.

The world press has carried frequent reports that a famous, unpredictable dictator actually suffered from syphilis of the brain. Surely his behavior was very similar to that of the patient above. What a tragedy that so many innocent people had to suffer! Was the "curse" of STD the real cause? Most press companies and health magazines report that a 'new sexual leprosy" is infecting millions with disease- and with despair. "Herpes" is a "virus of love," says the news magazine, that is resisting conventional medical treatment. "Millions, when they seek medical help, will often be given incorrect information or false hopes for cures. Most will suffer shame, guilt and even depression, and a few will become suicidal over what they feel is the 'new leprosy'.

Doctors warn that the risk of cervical cancer (in women) increases with the number of sexual partners. Dr Maureen Henderson of the University of Washington once said that numerous studies have linked it to promiscuous sex. "The greater the exposure, the greater the likelihood" of developing this disease."

Judgments from God?
God loves us (John 3:16). But if we transgress His law given us for our own good, we expose ourselves to the consequences of disaster, a known magazine quotes a 47-year-old man who got "Herpes" from a prostitute in Asia: "I regard myself as a carrier of an invisible, incurable disease. I have a guilt trip that won't quit". "Adultery is a trap-it catches those with whom the Lord is angry" (proverbs 22:14). This does not mean that the Lord hates the one who has transgressed. He still loves the sinner. But sin separates us from the intercession of Christ. We cut ourselves off from the protection that Christ as High priest gives to those who believe in Him and are "in Him". This allows Satan to have access to us, in order to destroy us.

Thus, the mysterious venereal diseases are a visible evidence we can understand Satan's inner, hidden activity. The Lord permits these physical evidences of spiritual diseases that are always the sure result of fornication and adultery. If we look at it in this light, even venereal diseases therefore can be a means to lead a sinner to repentance and salvation in Christ. Thus, venereal diseases we can say are the manifestation of the Devil himself, if we fall into his trap of sexual temptations, but if we work with God and do not yield to the offers of the Devil, we stay out of it and under the divine Love of our Lord and savior Jesus Christ. This is how God's love can transform a curse into a blessing! He will never use a fear mechanism to draw us to himself, but rather shower us with His love. But if we refuse and prove stubborn, then we should get ready to bear any form of consequence which will come our way.

Is There Help for People With Clinical Depression?

Clinical depression can affect people of all ages, genders, cultures and ethnicities. In the United States alone, some 17 million people suffer from the condition, making it a fairly common disease. Though prevalent, clinical depression is often unrecognized and misunderstood, and as a result, untreated.

A major cause of misunderstanding is the notion that this is a normal, passing condition. People say that it is normal for someone who experienced a tragic loss, such as the death of a loved one, to be sad and depressed. This may be so, but if the sadness and depression continues for a long time, without lessening in intensity, and continuously making it impossible for the person to live a normal life, then this is no longer normal or healthy. This condition is called clinical depression. It is a serious medical illness that needs to be professionally treated. It is not a condition that can just be willed away by the person, or that will go away on its own with the passing of time.

The good news is, there is treatment for this condition. It is possible to break away from the sadness, hopelessness, helplessness and apathy to life, which demonstrate a depressive condition. The usual route is through professional treatment, but there are also self-care activities that the person can do to cope with his depression.

Medical treatment is often the first step, because the depressed person usually does not have enough interest, desire, energy or resources to get well on his own. He may know what to do, but he lacks the will or desire to carry those things out. Also, when a person starts to entertain thoughts of suicide, medical treatment becomes a must. He should not be left on his own, as such is clearly unsafe.

Treatment typically involves a combination of psychotherapy and medication. Psychotherapy aims to help the person cope with things present in his daily life that may trigger depression or contribute to it, while medication eliminates or reduces the symptoms of depression. These symptoms include feeling sad all the time, having trouble sleeping, disturbed eating patterns, fatigue, and loss of interest in daily activities.

The usual drugs given to treat depression are antidepressants. There are various kinds of antidepressants, including selective serotonin reuptake inhibitors (SSRIs), which appear to be the safest and have the fewest side effects. Other types are tricyclic antidepressants (TCAs) and monoamine oxidase inhibitors (MAOIs). Each person has a unique set of biochemical characteristics, and depending on this, the doctor will determine which type of antidepressants will be most effective for him.

There are also different types of counseling and psychotherapy that the physician may employ, again considering the unique characteristics of the person to be treated. They include interpersonal therapy, cognitive-behavioral therapy (CBT), and psychodynamic therapy.
When the traditional methods combining medication and therapy fail to achieve the desired results, more aggressive treatment options may be used, such as electroconvulsive therapy (ECT). There are many treatment options, and there is at least one that will successfully treat a clinically depressed person.

On his own, ideally while the treatment is ongoing, the person can do the following self-care activities to help manage his condition:

• Eat a healthy, balanced diet.

• Exercise regularly.

• Get adequate sleep.

• Develop time- and stress-management skills.

• Learn to acknowledge feelings rather than suppress them.

• Have a support system consisting of family and friends.

There is clearly help for people with clinical depression. The condition can, and should, be treated so that one can start to live normally and happily again.

How to Detect and Cure Child Depression Fast and Naturally

All parents want to ensure that their kids are always healthy and happy. But what happens when happiness, or the lack of it, is a bigger problem that you expected? The truth of the matter is that child depression has become an increasingly larger problem in today's society than ever before. If you are concerned that your child is suffering from depression, there are several courses of actions you could choose to take, and you will find that the sooner you act, the better it is for your child.

What are the symptoms that indicate that your child is experiencing depression? A few telltale signs of this condition include:

o long periods of irritability
o feelings of hopelessness
o loss of pleasure in one's normal routine and activities
o constant feelings of worthlessness and inadequacy
o deteriorating performance in school
o social isolation
o excessive crying and feelings of sadness
o physical and/or verbal aggression
o suicidal thoughts

Most Effective Tips To Cure Child Depression

When thinking about what you can do for your child on a more personal, day to day basis, you can begin by ensuring that you are always there for your child. Make sure that all lines of communication are kept open, and that your child knows that he can always go to you for all his needs. Many children feel that they are alone in the problems they face. Thus, simply reassuring them that they are not can make a huge difference in your child's life. Learn more about what your child does and his or her interests to improve your relationship. Encourage your child by providing good advice when there is a need to and lend a listening ear when he needs one.

Parents who "consciously" invest time, energy and money for healthy adolescent development would be the ones helping their child shape his future and in turn help him quickly get over his worries. The adventure of backing up your child through this journey would be more exciting than going through the pain of rescuing his mental health back.

Parental pressure to excel in studies versus a general disregard to other extracurricular activities can cause an unusual complex in the minds of your child. This leaves him frustrated between his basic choices and the ability to fulfill parents' expectations.

Some children get jammed into their overtly rigid schedules pressuring them to surpass in all aspects right from studies to music, painting and even games. With schools adding up to the academic tensions, they under-perform causing low self-esteem and disrespect about self.

Your child should be encouraged to learn skills that interest and motivate them to avoid child depression, and also be assured that it's perfectly normal to fall short while learning and would need some time and practice.

Respect your children to help build up their self-pride. Appreciate their attributes, may it be an art, sports or studies. At the same time do not anticipate too much too early. Let them grow their natural pace without burdening them with your expectations or any other family responsibilities.

Communicate with them about issues like peer pressure, selecting a career, making friends, choices of smoking, drugs and sex with well defined boundaries which would help them grow into your coveted youth.

Healthy interpersonal relations in a family would help to diagnose signs of child depression more quickly. Converse with your kids and allow this connection at any time they feel like even if you are tired. Don't make them wait for weekends, but at the same time don't be so much available so as to invade their space. Realize the value of sharing your time and concern when they need it with a healthy mindset rather than connecting with them later to help them revive out of depression.

Create a good example about the way you control your life and deal with stress factors positively. Convey any of the family problems or other issues in a way that would not affect them. At the same time, appreciate your child to share their feelings of sadness or any other worries in a way they wish to. Be a patient listener and a source of hope for your child because most of the time just listening to their emotions helps them beat depression. Don't be affected by their depressing symptoms or worst is to react aggressively or make fun of them.

Child depression is a serious issue that needs to be treated as soon as it is detected. Remember that your child, no matter how independent they might seem, will still depend on you in times of need. So make sure that you are able to respond to it well, so as to help your child manage child depression effectively.

My Wife is Leaving - Keep Your Wife From Leaving by Letting Her Go

I love my wife but she is leaving - what now?

Breakups can destroy lives, they can lead us in to depression, they can have an enormous emotional effect on our children and they have the power to change the course of everyone's lives close to us if we let them.

Are all breakups bad? Do they all bring long lasting grief?
In certain circumstances they don't, especially when the circumstances before the separation were terrible, particularly if they were physically or mentally abusive.  Sometimes the separation may actually be the best thing for everyone involved.  Now I am certainly not suggesting that you won't have to mentally cope with the emotions that come with a separation but you will get through them much faster if you have accepted your situation for what it is.
The key is getting your feet on solid ground.  Most relationships are salvageable however the real key is determining if they should be salvaged otherwise you're likely to be in a vicious love hate cycle for years to come.
Here are some deep thought provoking quotes that can help you gain some clarity:
Grant Gudmundson: Love is unconditional, relationships are not.
Anonymous: Relationships are like glass. Sometimes its better to leave them broken than try to hurt yourself putting it back together.
Victoria Holt: Never regret. If it's good, it's wonderful. If it's bad, it's experience.
Robert Frost: Families break up when people take hints you don't intend and miss hints you do intend.
If your wife has made the final decision that she is leaving then you must be careful about what you do next.  If you had what you would consider to be a great relationship with your wife then your first move should be to let her go. At this point your wife is emotional, she has made up her mind that she is leaving and the last thing that you want to do is stand in her way. 
Letting her go and accepting the situation for what it is, is actually the most important step to eventually getting her back. Women don't just pick up and leave for no reason unless they are mentally unstable.  You're eventually going to find out where you went wrong but at first give her some space and let her collect her thoughts.
Acceptance is huge, stay away from negativity or re-hashing the things that are wrong.  Eventually you'll have an opportunity but for now play it cool and give her some space.

Thursday, May 2, 2013

Effects of Depression - Suicidal Thoughts

Depression is essentially a state of mind. In a depressed mental disposition, the person remains in a state of low mood and develops repugnance towards practically everything surrounding him. It can adversely affect a person's physical state, mental behavior and his emotions. A person under depression has a tendency to become irritable, sad, restless, bothersome, hopeless, melancholic and worthless and have a feeling of anxiety. A despondent mood is a natural reaction towards certain events in life that are considered to be a symptom of several clinical conditions and a characteristic of psychological syndromes. A person suffering from depression develops a tendency of losing total interest in activities that at one time provided happiness and pleasure. There is a loss of appetite and encountering problems in concentrating or even resulting in partial lapse in memory. Further, there is an element of indecision in the person and one of the most dangerous symptoms is when he contemplates on committing suicide.

A depressed state of mind is closely associated with a large number of psychological problems emanating from exhaustion, depletion of energy, over-sleep, lack of sleep or insomnia and perhaps even digestive problems. These problems are considered to counteract any type of treatment administered to the patient. A large number of disorders that are primary disturbances of mood are in fact mood disorders, within which a major depressive disorder is also known as a major case of depression or clinical depression. This condition comes up when a person has been suffering from bouts of depression for at least two weeks or has experienced a total loss of interest in activities that evoked maximum pleasure. Acute depression may also result in a total nervous breakdown. This is one of the most serious psychological conditions where it is necessary for a patient to consult a psychiatrist. A person suffering from depression may not be aware of the psychological problem that he is suffering from. The symptoms that may be appearing may not be visible, yet they are easily discernible to a psychiatrist. The behavioral patterns of the person suffering from a depression would be visible to any other person. The effects of a depressed mind may be reflected on his behavior with his family members, his colleagues at his work place and his strange and odd moods. A person in a depressed mood becomes like a ship without a rudder and moves around aimlessly without any objective in mind.

It would be pertinent to mention here that a large number of mental disorders emanate from conditions of the person both at his work place or at home. A nagging wife or a sadistic manager could make life miserable for the person concerned. A husband, who is continually nagged by an overbearing wife or neglected by other members of his family, develops a very strong tendency to suffer from severe mental problems. Mental stress takes its toll on the human brain. On the other hand at the work place, a male or female manager who is badgering constantly the person with unrestrained insults and demeaning him before his colleagues is considerably a very strong reason in itself for depression to set in. There are certain cases where a person feels a misfit amongst his colleagues and friends and this feeling of desolation tends to make a recluse of him and he refrains from sharing his feelings with anyone. The basic reason of a person not sharing his problems with even a close person such as one's wife or a friend is his fear of being ridiculed. When this emotion becomes strong, a person loses interest in life and contemplates on committing suicide, a situation which becomes disastrous. There is no pre-defined age for suffering from depression as it strikes without any warning.

Depression is a not an incurable disease. It is a malady that requires a lot of patience both in the person undergoing treatment as well as the person who is treating the patient. It may take a long time to transform the mental state of a despondent person. The treatment is long and may even take years. The treatment may include medicinal treatment including psychotropic drugs and medicines. There is a possibility that the drugs may bring about effects which remain for a very short period and with the prolonged use of the drug, some of these effects would wear off. However, some patients suffering from insomnia are administered sleeping drugs to induce sleep so that their mind could get some rest. A patient also has to undergo psychological treatment in the form of psychiatric consultation. It is extremely important for the psycho-analyst to analyze thoroughly the mental condition of the patient before starting the treatment. A full patient medical history, physical assessment and a thorough assessment of the symptoms assist in determining the exact cause of the depression. A complete medical history of the patient medical history, physical assessment and a thorough evaluation of the symptoms help determine the precise cause of the depression. It is the prerogative of the psychiatrist to decide on the method of treatment since he is the best person to decide on the type of treatment provided to the patient that would stand to benefit him in the long run.

In conclusion, it is strongly recommended that any symptoms arising from depressive moods should not be ignored and should be referred to a psychiatrist immediately without any delay. There is an old adage which goes like this, 'a nail lost is a shoe lost, a shoe lost is a horseman lost, a horseman lost means a war is lost.' Therefore, timely action could avert a severe mental disorder. Regular and effectual treatment result in a positive cure from this problem.

Bipolar Disorder Definition - Everything You Need To Know

There are quite a number of textbooks written by several scholars and medical practitioner that try to clearly define what bipolar disorder really is. It is to a certain extent affirmative that the whole world clearly acknowledges that is a mental disease. However, different experts have different definitions of the bipolar disease. A certain text book has been widely criticized for its explanation of the disease. The book defines the bipolar disease as a major emotional disorder where the affected person alternates between acute euphoria and major depression. Critics dispute this explanation because they say bipolar disease, also known as manic depressive illness, is a little bit more complex than just a state where the affected person just alternates between acute euphoria and major depression.

The United States' Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders, a department of the American Psychiatric Association, says the bipolar disorder disease is usually characterized by one or more episodes of manic later followed by major episodes of depression. The Association, also known as DSM, concludes that even if you are depressed for a long time and you happen to have just one episode of manic, then you automatically qualify as a bipolar disease patient. This definition however still does not talk a lot about what depression really is.

So what really is the definition of bipolar disease? Bipolar Disorder is an ailment that usually affects a person's manners, opinions, thoughts and even his or her feelings. It is also known to affect a person's physical being. A condition clinically known as psychosomatic presentations. Most of the time, it is not uncommon in families who have a history of mental illnesses. The disease is said to affect the chemical and electrical elements of the brain which makes them not function properly. The person will then experience varying moods of manic depression. Bipolar Disorder has two major poles, depression and mania. The symptoms of depression include: oversleeping, deprivation of sleep, extreme ignorance where the person is no longer interested in what he used to love before, inattentiveness, and also suicidal.

The symptoms of mania include: feeling free all of a sudden which makes the person to disregard laws, increased sexual drive, hallucinating, and a feeling of being strong all of a sudden. These manic symptoms are generally what a person will feel when recovering from an illness. So a person who becomes manic may think that has recovered from depression.

Depression As A Misdiagnosis

Depression is a common mood disorder that a number of people seek assistance with. Unfortunately, some of these people end up misdiagnosed as depressed when they actually have bipolar disorder. Depression is a component of bipolar disorder. Though they are both mood disorders, they are entirely separate afflictions that require starkly different treatments. Misdiagnosis derails a person's wellness goals until it is corrected.

Psychiatric and medical professionals that do not have specific knowledge of bipolar disorder can easily overlook it. The reason is simple. A person that is depressed is going to understand how terrible they probably feel. They will visit their doctor, talk about their depression, how they're feeling, and hopefully be treated for it. The problem is that the depressive person does not always associate their mental upswings as a negative experience even if they are destructive. Anything is a welcome respite and positive so long as it is not the consuming void of depression.

Misdiagnosis creates a very drastic problem. The average treatment for bipolar disorder includes an antidepressant and a mood stabilizer. The antidepressant is meant to bring the lower end of the person's moods to a higher level. The mood stabilizer creates a ceiling that prevents the bipolar person from escalating. Treatment for depression does not include a mood stabilizer. A bipolar person that is misdiagnosed as depressed and is on antidepressants will just keep escalating until they finally hit their breaking point. The mood stabilizer is not there to provide the necessary ceiling. That is extremely dangerous. It has resulted in suicides, homicides, institutionalization, and self-destruction.

There is good news and bad news! The good news is that the symptoms of the manic periods of bipolar disorder are fairly easy once a person understands what they look like. The bad news is that not a whole lot of people understand what Bipolar Disorder is as opposed to the mental image they have through the media or their own opinions.

The answer is in the question- how does the person feel when they are not depressed? Do they have unlimited energy? How about very scattered thoughts that either do not connect or are entirely erratic? How is the person sleeping? A manic bipolar can get very little to no sleep and still not be physically tired. Manic thinking causes a person to draw conclusions and have thoughts that they normally would not. It is common for a bipolar person to look back on an unwell period and question why they ever would have performed an action that they did. Impulsive decisions and spending are also very common.

The most important question at the center of it all is simply, "Are the periods where I am not depressed just as destructive when I am?" A person that is answering yes to some of these questions should ask to be screened for bipolar disorder.

Depression is easily treatable for a number of people. People that have more psychiatric problems going on will have a much harder time of things. A depressive person struggling to find wellness for years should ask to be screened whether they feel they meet the criteria or not. A dual diagnosis of depression and some form of anxiety disorder is common. Manic symptoms are often mistaken for the signs of an anxiety disorder because they share many similarities.

The final thing to look for is a pattern. Bipolar Disorder typically emerges during puberty. The Bipolar person's manic unwell periods follow a certain pattern. An event will trigger them, they will begin to escalate, their mind will gain speed until it reaches the peak, and then they will plummet down into a deep depression much worse than what they normally deal with. The next few days after that the person will feel pretty good but not to an unhealthy extent. Finally, they will settle back to whatever their baseline mood is. This pattern will have repeated itself several times over the course of the person's life.

Misdiagnosis of bipolar disorder as depression ensures that the bipolar person will not find wellness.

Herbs For Depression, Anxiety, Insomnia, Irritability, and Nervousness

When a client comes to me with mood balance problems, I almost always offer them a specially formulated traditional herbal tonic as part of my comprehensive approach to Mood and Energy Wellness.

My clients (and I personally) find these tonics to be a key asset in maintaining stable, balanced, centered, and harmonious moods throughout the day.

The exact formulation of herbal tinctures that I combine for each client varies and is proprietary.

Generally these are the herbs I choose from for their effects on depression, anxiety, insomnia, irritability, and nervousness.

St. John's Wort

Many studies attest to the ability of St. John's Wort to positively affect depression. St. John's Wort has at least 10 active ingredients that help in relieving depression. As proven as those active ingredients are, never forget that the whole herb is going to be more powerful than its extracted ingredients. St. John's Wort helps relieve depression by:

  • Acting like a Serotonin Reuptake inhibitor (SSRI) similar to SSRI anti-depressant medications. 

  • Acting as a norepinephrine reuptake inhibitor keeping this neurotransmitter at optimal levels. Low norepinephrine levels results in fatigue and lack of energy. Optimal norepinephrine levels are important for cardiovascular functioning, thermal regulation, vascular functioning (blood vessels) and act in the central nervous system to improve mood and concentration.

  • Inhibits excessive cortisol secretion.

  • Lifts dopamine levels. Low levels of dopamine leave you without adequate motivation and prone to compulsions and additions.

  • Enhances the activity of the natural tranquilizer GABA in the brain.

A number of studies have demonstrated the efficacy of St. John's Wort in improving depression symptoms with approximately 80% of people using St. John's Wort finding relief.

Black Cohosh

Black Cohosh is an analgesic nervine relaxant and helps correct low estrogen states in depression. Black Cohosh is especially indicated for deep dark depression that seems to descend out of nowhere. It helps when the mind is chaotic and wild with little ability to focus that results in acute or chronic anxiety.

New research indicates that Black Cohosh helps mood imbalances through directly effecting neurotransmitters and not just as a phytoestrogen acting like estrogen. It appears that Black Cohosh works through the brain and hypothalamus. It does so by affecting the neurotransmitters serotonin and dopamine - which helps explain why it alleviates mood swings and irritability.

Siberian Ginseng

Siberian Ginseng is an adaptogen and helps the body reach a healthy homeostatic state and more easily manage and integrate the stress that can act as a trigger for depression. It raises mood and increases non- specific immunity, which makes it especially helpful when depression occurs in conjunction with chronic illness.

Siberian Ginseng acts as both a mild tranquilizer and neurostimulant and has both a calming and a stimulating effect useful in both manic or depressive phases and sedation and arousal depressive states. The stimulation achieved with Siberian Ginseng does not produce nervousness and over stimulation but rather a relaxed sense of well-being - calming and at the same time invigorating.

It can raise norepinephrine levels helping to induce movement and motivation for desired projects. Plus, it works as a nerve tonic to calm the agitation that can come with depression.

Siberian Ginseng is particularly supportive for stressed and overtaxed adrenals and because adrenal gland tissue is neuroendocrine tissue, Siberian Ginseng provides the adrenal support along with brain support. It stimulates the adrenals to help give more energy to the body and the cholinergic (calming) nervous system. Its effect on the adrenal glands is more tonic-like than stimulating and acts to normalize adrenal activity. The use of Siberian Ginseng switches adrenal function from a cortisol/catoblic focus to a DHEA/anabolic focus resulting in building and energizing and normalizing physiological functioning throughout the body.

Siberian Ginseng has a long respected ability to improve performance and withstand adverse conditions without experiencing adverse effects. It also increases mental alertness, improves concentration, and has been found to increase the transmission of nerve impulses in the brain.

In addition, Siberian Ginseng contains concentrated nourishment - especially for the brain and the nervous system. A well-nourished brain and nervous system are less likely to fall victim to mood imbalances.


Lavender is a restorative for the nervous system and helps lift mood - especially when sadness and low mood linger on after improvements in life situations. Lavender clarifies and stimulates thought processes and eases and relaxes emotional tension. It stimulates the limbic system and causes relaxation in anxious, tense, or hysterical states. Very soothing to the nervous system.

Passion Flower

Passion Flower helps to achieve stability of mood. It also helps restore deep synchronized sleep patterns in those who are tired but are awakened by pain or mental or emotional disruption during the night. It is specific for depression with deep exhaustion and insomnia due to worry, overwork, or disability.

Passion Flower is excellent remedy for reducing and resolving rumination - the excessive and repetitive thinking so often accompanying depression and other mood disorders. Passion Flower is effective in managing generalized anxiety and nervous restlessness.

Lemon Balm

This is a gentle but powerful nervine, which affects the limbic-hippocampal area in the brain. By so doing, the plant helps to filter out excessive stimuli from the body and modulates internal and external nervous input protecting the brain from excessive stimulation, reducing symptoms of excitability, restlessness, headaches, and palpitations.

Lemon Balm is specific for nervous heart, nervous stomach, and for depression co-existing with difficulty going to sleep. As a carminative nervine, it strengthens the brain against restlessness, anxiety, and neuroses.

Lemon Balm is known as the "gladdening" herb and has mild anti-depressant qualities, being soothing, calming, and uplifting plus reducing restlessness and agitation.


Nettles is the premier herb for all your physical and subtle energy systems. She clears out debris in your entire energetic network and clearly but gently dismantles old, worn out energy patterns. Nettles is truly a liquid green gold that weaves her way through you to reconnect you to your own harmonious rhythms freeing up stale and stagnant energy enlivening you.

Nettles is a nutritional powerhouse having appropriately ample supplies of amino acids, calcium, magnesium, chromium, cobalt, iron, phosphorus, potassium, zinc, copper, sulfur, selenium, silicon, manganese, trace minerals, all the B vitamins , the carotenes, vitamin K, D, and C! And nettles is a wonderful restorative tonic for the kidneys and adrenals. Strong well-nourished kidneys and adrenals are needed for the production of ample clean energy and for replenishing your deep reserves of essential life energy. Nettles provides a sense of clarity, wellness, and well-being. Nettles will nourish an awakening in you of your true self - the self that your depression is attempting to hide from you.


Alfalfa means "father of all foods" and is another nutritional powerhouse. Alfalfa is rich in chlorophyll and natural protein and has high concentration of Vitamins A, B6, D, E, and K as well. Alfalfa's roots reach deep into the soil and bring up minerals stored deep in the soil. It is a good source of iron, potassium, magnesium, and phosphorus and contains eight of the essential amino acids. Alfalfa is a rich nutritional support for many systems of the body and as such it encourages, supports, and coaxes the production of fundamental clean energy in the body.

California Poppy

California Poppy helps normalize disturbed sleep patterns, which are a troublesome part of depression.

Wood Betony

Wood Betony is a gentle, stimulating tonic for the brain especially in the presence of hysteria and persistent unwanted thoughts, and for nervous debility, anxiety, or neuroses. 

Gotu Kola

Gotu Kola is a powerful rejuvenative nervine that enhances oxygenation and the metabolic efficiency of the brain. It is reported to increase intelligence, longevity, and memory while decreasing senility and aging. Known as the king of tonics for the mind it enhances cerebral function. It also helps to purify the blood and strengthen the adrenals.


Rose gives its supportive gentle strength to the brain and nervous system. It is loving, calming, centering, and facilitates the integration and release of stressful experiences. Rose enhances your ability to drop your consciousness out of your analytical mind into your heart and stay focused in your heart-centered intelligence. Rose helps you make your way through the dark night of mood imbalances and step through the gateway to give and receive love. Lifts your spirits, heals the pain of the heart and enlivens your vitality.

If you are taking anti-anxiety and/or anti-depressant medications, any other medications, have a diagnosed condition or illness, are pregnant, breastfeeding, elderly or very young it is important to work with a knowledgeable health care practitioner before using these or any herbs. Uses described are based on traditional use and personal experience. These statements have not been evaluated by the FDA. Evenstar Herbs products are not intended to diagnose, treat, cure, or prevent any disease.

Immobilization is Actually Linked to Clinical Depression

Do you know how immobilization is linked to depression? Some people prefer the word 'immobilization' to be the indicator of depression. Sometimes, patients who are suffering from depression prefer to hold on to these feelings as they feel that these feelings are worth having at times.

Immobilization has a long range. It can be total inaction to daily activities or it can be mild indecisiveness and hesitance. Depressed patients often have to undergo this painful transition period as immobilization doesn't allow them to say, feel or do something.

If you are suffering from clinical depression, look no further for a reason to get rid of immobilization. Immobilization hinders your goals. The worst thing is that your loved ones do not understand why you are immobilized. They don't understand why you feel this way! Hence, this leads to the erection of several barriers of communication. You pull yourself further away from your loved ones, depression sinks further into you and this vicious cycle repeats.

For example, you feel very unhappy when you take up a new job - that is accompanied with new responsibilities. You hate your boss and your colleagues because you feel that they aren't accommodating towards your needs. Depression sinks in. You go home and vent your frustration on your kid because you are internally upset. Yelling at your spouse seems common. Sometimes, the entire house is filled with awkward silences because you are simply too depressed. You feel that you can't talk lovingly and bring across the message that things aren't working out.

The moment you can't do something, you are immobilized. And the only way to eliminate immobilization is to cure your depression.

Manic Depressive Treatment Options

In today's modern world, a patient that has been diagnosed with a bipolar disorder has many more manic depressive treatment options than similar patients of years gone by. Fortunately enough, today's treatments are easier on the patient and produce better outcomes than their historical counterparts.

Treatments include both medications and cognitive therapy which work in conjunction with each other. As such, relief happens faster than if either modality were to be used alone. Patients are thought to rethink their way of thinking which prior to the initiation of therapy, was flawed. These remedies are much more comprehensive and effective than the self-help treatments of years gone by.

We also see the use of more modern medicines being used by manic depressive patients that are better tolerated by the body. The two most beneficial features are longer lasting medications which decreases the daily pill burden for the patient and medications with fewer side effects. Side effects of past medicines were sometimes debilitating to the point of not improving the patient's quality of life. That's not to say that we do not see any unwanted side effects. They are just less taxing on the human element to the point that patients can now lead full and productive lives.

Medication therapy is usually a mixture of a few effective modern drugs. These medications are also known as mood stabilizers unless the patient tends to have one phase of the bipolar state more than any other. In such a case, the medicine will be more targeted to the specific symptoms of the manic depressive patient.

Manic depressive treatment options also include psychotherapy which helps to control the depressive states. Very often, these patients have suicidal thoughts. Being able to control this aspect with psychotherapy goes a long way to producing positive outcomes. Of course if this does not work, psychiatric hospitalization is crucial as these patients can be a danger to both themselves and the people around them. Until they can get their emotions under control, they may have to be monitored in a healthcare facility.

On a lighter note, very often the simple act of joining a support group is all that is needed for some manic depressive treatments. These like-minded organizations bring patients together who learn to trust one another. They also learn about living a healthy life style which includes a daily regimen of exercise and good eating habits.

Early detection relapse therapy is also a useful tool in combating this illness. Here, the therapist will basically teach several specific symptoms for the patient to take into consideration. These symptoms ought to signal a possibility of a relapse. By recognizing some of these symptoms early, it leads the way for faster medical intervention. In the end, the manic depressive patient can now enjoy a fuller, more active, socially acceptable lifestyle.

Wednesday, May 1, 2013

Cornerstones Of Self-Confidence

We all need self confidence in order to succeed in life. Without self confidence we will be unable to face life's challenges with equanimity. With it we will be able to face them with courage.

The dilemma we are faced with, however, is how to gain self confidence when we lack it in the first place? The key to genuine self confidence is to experience success. This is not as difficult to do as you might think. Many people set themselves up to be discouraged by making it hard to succeed. You can make it easy to succeed by breaking down your larger goals into smaller ones that you can more easily achieve. Make sure that you enjoy each small achievement and your self confidence will increase.

Self image is another important concept of self confidence. If you have a poor self image, your self talk will probably be negative. If you are constantly criticizing yourself and you feel like you are never good enough, you are making it very difficult (if not impossible) to succeed. A low self image is often the by-product of the messages we received as children but it can also be the consequence of the devastating blows we can receive as adults such as divorce, job loss or business failure. We have to learn from our mistakes, however we don't want to get stuck in a cycle of self blame as it can be a slippery slope to despair and depression. As motivational speaker and author Tony Robbins says: "The past does not equal the future." Look forward, not backwards and begin to work towards a brighter future.

People also affect our self confidence both positively or negatively. The simple decision to spend time with friends and family members who are positive and supportive and to avoid spending much time with those who are negative will lead to increased self confidence.

The way we respond to feedback is another important factor which will influence our level of self confidence. While it is certainly true that we need to see ourselves as inherently worthy, we need to avoid over-confidence or arrogance. We are all unique individuals who have something special to offer the world. This understanding will help us to develop the sort of positive beliefs, values and thinking that will strengthen our self confidence so that we can move forward successfully in life. However, all criticism is the result of negativity. Some criticism is very valuable. Be willing to listen to criticism, pay attention to information you can use to improve as a person and throw away the rest. Your ability to respond maturely to feedback will help you become the best person you can be. Likewise, your ability to discern unwarranted criticism and disregard it will keep your self confidence intact.

The way you speak to yourself is also very important. Positive self talk will give you the confidence and belief in yourself to step up to the challenges and opportunities of life and undertake them with courage and excellence. Negative internal dialogue, on the other hand, will keep you from even trying. Be willing to monitor your thoughts and actively choose to think positively about yourself and your abilities.

Your self image is intimately tied to your destiny. Most people let their minds run amuck, unaware that their thoughts and feelings about themselves are actually writing the story of their lives. We have to guard against thoughts of failure and inadequacy. If we aim high and believe that we are capable of achieving our goals we will have set ourselves on the pathway to success. The power of a positive vision cannot be underestimated on this journey. Where do you want to be in five or ten years from now? Write down your vision and turn it into goals.

It is easy to get into the bad habit of thinking negatively. To overcome this habit you will need to make a concerted effort to focus on your positive traits. Keep a note of your strengths. What sort of compliments do people tend to give you? What would you like to improve about yourself? Take charge of these areas and make a plan. Taking action will automatically shore up your self confidence. If you make a habit of thinking and acting confidently (no matter how you feel) and limit your contact with people who criticize you or belittle your dreams, you will become a far more self confident and successful person.

By applying these strategies and taking responsibility for your life, you will find that you will become a naturally self confident person. Furthermore, it will be a genuine and deep self confidence that can stand firm under the storms of life.

Controlling Depression the Spiritual Way

Did you know that in the West as much as 68% of women, and 42% of men, find themselves dealing with mental depression at some point in their lives? What causes depression, and how can it be dealt with? Most people are able to continue with their duties in life, and learn to bear this feeling without having it completely take them over, yet a percentage find it absolutely necessary to seek some form of help, from counseling to actually being institutionalized. Why do we get depressed for no reason sometimes? Of course we all have to deal with sadness and disappointments in life, but oftentimes depression occurs without any particular happenstance. It can start with just a general feeling of unhappiness, unfulfillment, and lead in extreme cases to utter hopelessness, and even thoughts of suicide. In today's modern world it is becoming more and more of a problem for many people, especially in the Western world. What is so wrong with the way we live that mental health seems to be prevalent in so many of us?

The United States and Western Europe have the most burgeoning mental health businesses in the world. Virtually tens of thousands of people, seemingly successful in their lives, are regularly visiting psychologists, psychiatrists, psychoanalysts, and the like. And this is in countries that have the highest standards of living in the world. As a matter of fact those that have the highest instances of depression have no lacking in the necessities of life. Yet if you go to countries in Asia, even to economically deprived places, you find that people are not so troubled mentally, and clinical depression, neurosis, and psychosis are relatively rare. Why in the places where the greatest strides have been made scientifically are there the greatest amount of mental health problems?

The reason is the difference in philosophical outlooks on life. We are an almost fatalistic society putting all our concentration on success in this life materially. Death and what occurs during and after this transition is rarely spoken of, generally, in the West. Most people don't want to think about it, let alone make some effort to learn how to prepare for it while we are alive in these bodies. All concentration is put on material success and power. The fact is, that no matter how much money, possessions friends and lovers you accumulate, there is always a nagging feeling of "is this it"? Most people have ideas of what it would take to make us happy in life, and generally it centers on financial independence or wealth building, and relationships. Yet once achieved there's an almost immediate letdown. We thought we'd experience some form of bliss from the attainment of material goals, and then find out it is short-lived. So what is the missing link, the key to being able to gain happiness in life?

It lies in understanding our true nature as spirit and making spiritual advancement, as well as material advancement, while we are here. There must be a balance of physical, mental, and spiritual health. One must ask himself questions like "who am I, really?" "Who is God?" and "what is the goal of human life?" "Where have I come from, and where am I going after this life"? With spiritual recognition there comes hopefulness, rather than hopelessness. We are born into these bodies carrying our karma from previous incarnations with us. When you die, or leave this body, that is all you will take with you. In Eastern philosophy it is said that all of your possessions, and relationships based on bodily identification, will be finished at the time of death. Therefore it is useless to make plans to stay here forever. Although Westerners don't like to discuss this, no one can deny that he or she will grow old and die. Therefore one must find out how to gain knowledge of the soul, and what is our true desire above and beyond our bodily identifications. Fear is born of ignorance, and it is said that knowledge is the torchlight, which dispels the darkness of ignorance. Because in India, and many other eastern countries, there is at least some understanding of karma, and reincarnation, or transmigration of the soul, there is much less mental sickness among the populace. People understand that this life is not the all in all, and that only self-realization can bring happiness and peace of mind. We must give greater concentration to that which is our eternal position in life, not just concentrating on things based on our bodies, which are temporary.

The science of Vedic or Hindu astrology is a great tool for helping us to understand ourselves as spiritual entities that have taken these bodies due to our own previous actions. Whatever one does, good or bad, creates karma. Good actions will allow one to take a nice body, and be granted material pleasures, and harmful actions will insure one a more miserable birth in the next life. From one's horoscope we can tell so much about ourselves, and therefore make proper decisions in life to make advancement not only to insure material happiness, but also to gain some degree of spiritual happiness, building and advancing in spiritual consciousness from birth to birth. Only then can we successfully deal with depression and it's debilitating effects on human life.

One cannot just imagine how to gain spiritual happiness, or to gain spiritual knowledge. To do so requires a bona-fide teacher, or guru as is often termed, that is sufficiently advanced to be able to impart spiritual knowledge to others. Having an astrological analysis is also extremely useful as it gives some indication of where one has come from previous to this particular body. It shows our strengths, and weaknesses in different areas of life that are resultant from actions performed in previous lives. It will show how we can best conduct ourselves to be successful in this world, and also how to act for spiritual success. This will give one the ability to deal with mental inebriety, as for those who realize that this lifetime is not the end-all there is much less instance of serious depression. Whatever your beliefs or particular inclinations in philosophy and religion, give them more importance in your life. Seek answers from a higher source. In countries where simple living and high thinking are prevalent there is a more pervasive atmosphere of satisfaction in life, whereas in countries where advanced material living takes precedence there is more dissatisfaction among the populations than ever before. Think about it. Then do something about it. We are "piloting our own planes" in this lifetime. We are born into this life with nothing material, and we leave with nothing material. If you seek truth, you will find it. Your action shapes your destiny, so it's up to you.

The Pursuit of Happiness - What is the Meaning of the Fruits of True Happiness?

True happiness is said to be both an inner glow and an outer radiation that you can feel together with an total satisfaction.

Dictionaries will give you the meaning of happiness as an emotional feeling which parallels with
pleasure, joy, and contentment. But then these things are just temporary. In your pursuit for happiness you have to dig deeper into the real meaning of happiness, a happiness that is true and never ending.

True happiness is a great feeling of satisfaction which is incomparable to the instant pleasures you get when you see your favourite soccer team winning. It is felt when you overcome an obstacle which has been presented to you. There are many people out there who do not know much about true happiness.
This is the reason I have compiled this article on happiness, to let you learn how to find happiness and be happy.

What really makes you happy?

Is it the material things such as money, clothes, jewellery, brand name footwear and bags? Do you go for long-term states of happiness such as security, good health, and love? Which is most valuable to you? Have you gotten access to true happiness? When was the last time you felt really happy? Does happiness quotes and happiness poems make you fell good inside and out? Have you given your all to a certain challenge and you felt satisfied with all those efforts you have placed?

Recognizing true happiness is a must.

There are several occurrences when you have been misguided to the real deal in your pursuit to happiness and simple pleasure. To mark a definition between the two, it is vital that you know the exact difference that comes with both terms. Simple pleasure is a thing of feeling terrific about something. Examples of pleasurable experiences are a family cruise vacation, a spa treatment during the weekend, a great basketball game, and so on. Meanwhile, true happiness is far from feeling emotionally happy.
It goes more way beyond enjoyment. In True happiness lies contentment and engrossment.

So what is it that let people have true happiness?

Researchers have identified several factors that can fully describe true happiness in a person. They say that people from all walks of life find happiness but are just too busy to pay any attention to it simply because they fail to recognize what true happiness and pleasure are.

True happiness in a person is actually a state where in you feel like going along with the flow. You seem to be going along with the flow that sets off smoothly, hassle free, and effortlessly. It can be compared to an experience wherein the ticking of the clock stops suddenly and you become totally oblivious of the things that surrounds you.

Among the significant clues of happiness are being totally immersed with what you are doing, when you have your full participation on an engagement, when you are enjoying to the extreme but you have certainly have no idea with regards to the day, to the passing time, to the other things taking place in your surroundings, and the genuine satisfaction that you feel. These are the instances that can inform you that you have got nothing but true happiness in your mind, heart, and soul.

There is chance of true happiness for every person. Do not be taken aback by the negativity that happiness is only meant for other people. In your pursuit for happiness, just remember that you also deserve to experience and find happiness. When it comes your way, you can attest to how lucky you are as a person. Therefore, take time to reconcile occurrences and things in your life. Give importance to the value of true happiness everyday.

"Do not worry, be happy" - famous happiness quote.

Antidepressant Facts You May Not Know About

If you have depression and are wondering why your antidepressants are not working for you, you are not alone. Many of these drugs that people with this illness are taking not only do not work, but can in fact make symptoms worse. Certain people can not take these drugs, like children and adolescents, because they could make young people start thinking about suicide, or have other behavioral problems, far worse than the problem itself.

There are many different reasons why you should think before you take antidepressants for treating depression. In addition to them not working in the first place, there are also other problems relating to them. For one thing, many of these medications are highly addictive and in some cases the withdrawal symptoms are as bad as withdrawal from hardcore drugs like heroin, and amphetamines. The reason for this is that your body starts building up a tolerance, and it gets ingrained on your brain. You start having to take more and more to get the same effects.

In some cases, the reason people have depression is a lower level of serotonin in the body. Serotonin acts like a mood enhancer in the body, plus it can help with sleep, appetite, and the production of healthy cell and immunities. If you do not have enough of this chemical, then you can feel the symptoms of depression. The problem with antidepressants that are designed to heighten these levels, actually do it too much, so the receptors that regulate these levels are falsely registering serotonin in the system and shut down. The more you take, the more they shut down, and the same is true for the endorphins in your body as well.

Many medications for treating this disease have some really bad side-effects, that is why these medications are so carefully monitored. Many of the common ones include nausea, headaches, stomach pain, and trouble with bowel movements. There is irritability in many cases, and mood swings, as well as many others. There are some major psychological side-effects that can also occur. These can include thoughts of suicide, behavioral changes, and severe anxiety. Now if you thought that depression was your biggest problem, you may end up dealing with psychological issues as well.

There are also long term effects that go along with taking anti-depressants for depression. Some of these can include kidney and liver damage, high blood pressure, stomach ulcers, and a higher risk for stroke or a heart attack. This is why doctors test for liver and kidney problems, and monitor them regularly.

Sometimes, there are causes of depression that people may not even think about. People who suffer from certain allergies, or that have toxins in their system suffer from this disease, because their brains are inflamed, or these toxins have built up in their systems over time. Taking natural non-inflammatory foods, flushing toxic build up from your body can often relieve the symptoms of the disease, without antidepressants. Changing your diet, getting exercise, and drinking lots of fluids, are all natural ways to heal your body.

There is an abundance of other important information on why medications do not work for treating depressed individuals that you can find on-line. It is important to read as much as you can on this disease, its causes and natural remedies, as well as medications before you take them.

For Both Women And Men, Rates Of Major Depression Are Highest Among The Separated And Divorced

For both women and men, rates of major depression are highest among the separated and divorced, and lowest among the married, while remaining always higher for women than for men. The quality of a marriage, however, may contribute significantly to depression. Lack of an intimate, confiding relationship, as well as overt marital disputes, have been shown to be related to depression in women. In fact, rates of depression were shown to be highest among unhappily married women.

Reproductive Events

Women's reproductive events include the menstrual cycle, pregnancy, the postpregnancy period, infertility, menopause, and sometimes, the decision not to have children. These events bring fluctuations in mood that for some women include depression. Researchers have confirmed that hormones have an effect on the brain chemistry that controls emotions and mood; a specific biological mechanism explaining hormonal involvement is not known, however.

Many women experience certain behavioral and physical changes associated with phases of their menstrual cycles. In some women, these changes are severe, occur regularly, and include depressed feelings, irritability, and other emotional and physical changes. Called premenstrual syndrome (PMS) or premenstrual dysphoric disorder (PMDD), the changes typically begin after ovulation and become gradually worse until menstruation starts. Scientists are exploring how the cyclical rise and fall of estrogen and other hormones may affect the brain chemistry that is associated with depressive illness.

Postpartum mood changes can range from transient "blues" immediately following childbirth to an episode of major depression to severe, incapacitating, psychotic depression. Studies suggest that women who experience major depression after childbirth very often have had prior depressive episodes even though they may not have been diagnosed and treated.

Pregnancy (if it is desired) seldom contributes to depression, and having an abortion does not appear to lead to a higher incidence of depression. Women with infertility problems may be subject to extreme anxiety or sadness, though it is unclear if this contributes to a higher rate of depressive illness. In addition, motherhood may be a time of heightened risk for depression because of the stress and demands it imposes.

Menopause, in general, is not associated with an increased risk of depression. In fact, while once considered a unique disorder, research has shown that depressive illness at menopause is no different than at other ages. The women more vulnerable to change-of-life depression are those with a history of past depressive episodes.

Specific Cultural Considerations

As for depression in general, the prevalence rate of depression in African American and Hispanic women remains about twice that of men. There is some indication, however, that major depression and dysthymia may be diagnosed less frequently in African American and slightly more frequently in Hispanic than in Caucasian women. Prevalence information for other racial and ethnic groups is not definitive.

Possible differences in symptom presentation may affect the way depression is recognized and diagnosed among minorities. For example, African Americans are more likely to report somatic symptoms, such as appetite change and body aches and pains. In addition, people from various cultural backgrounds may view depressive symptoms in different ways. Such factors should be considered when working with women from special populations.


Studies show that women molested as children are more likely to have clinical depression at some time in their lives than those with no such history. In addition, several studies show a higher incidence of depression among women who have been raped as adolescents or adults. Since far more women than men were sexually abused as children, these findings are relevant. Women who experience other commonly occurring forms of abuse, such as physical abuse and sexual harassment on the job, also may experience higher rates of depression. Abuse may lead to depression by fostering low self-esteem, a sense of helplessness, self-blame, and social isolation. There may be biological and environmental risk factors for depression resulting from growing up in a dysfunctional family. At present, more research is needed to understand whether victimization is connected specifically to depression.


Women and children represent seventy-five percent of the U.S. population considered poor. Low economic status brings with it many stresses, including isolation, uncertainty, frequent negative events, and poor access to helpful resources. Sadness and low morale are more common among persons with low incomes and those lacking social supports. But research has not yet established whether depressive illnesses are more prevalent among those facing environmental stressors such as these.
Depression in Later Adulthood

At one time, it was commonly thought that women were particularly vulnerable to depression when their children left home and they were confronted with "empty nest syndrome" and experienced a profound loss of purpose and identity. However, studies show no increase in depressive illness among women at this stage of life.

As with younger age groups, more elderly women than men suffer from depressive illness. Similarly, for all age groups, being unmarried (which includes widowhood) is also a risk factor for depression. Most important, depression should not be dismissed as a normal consequence of the physical, social, and economic problems of later life. In fact, studies show that most older people feel satisfied with their lives.

About 800,000 persons are widowed each year. Most of them are older, female, and experience varying degrees of depressive symptomatology. Most do not need formal treatment, but those who are moderately or severely sad appear to benefit from self-help groups or various psychosocial treatments. However, a third of widows/widowers do meet criteria for major depressive episode in the first month after the death, and half of these remain clinically depressed 1 year later. These depressions respond to standard antidepressant treatments, although research on when to start treatment or how medications should be combined with psychosocial treatments is still in its early stages.


Even severe depression can be highly responsive to treatment. Indeed, believing one's condition is "incurable" is often part of the hopelessness that accompanies serious depression. Such individuals should be provided with the information about the effectiveness of modern treatments for depression in a way that acknowledges their likely skepticism about whether treatment will work for them. As with many illnesses, the earlier treatment begins, the more effective and the greater the likelihood of preventing serious recurrences. Of course, treatment will not eliminate life's inevitable stresses and ups and downs. But it can greatly enhance the ability to manage such challenges and lead to greater enjoyment of life.

The first step in treatment for depression should be a thorough examination to rule out any physical illnesses that may cause depressive symptoms. Since certain medications can cause the same symptoms as depression, the examining physician should be made aware of any medications being used. If a physical cause for the depression is not found, a psychological evaluation should be conducted by the physician or a referral made to a mental health professional.

Types of Treatment for Depression

The most commonly used treatments for depression are antidepressant medication, psychotherapy, or a combination of the two. Which of these is the right treatment for any one individual depends on the nature and severity of the depression and, to some extent, on individual preference. In mild or moderate depression, one or both of these treatments may be useful, while in severe or incapacitating depression, medication is generally recommended as a first step in the treatment.11 In combined treatment, medication can relieve physical symptoms quickly, while psychotherapy allows the opportunity to learn more effective ways of handling problems.


There are several types of antidepressant medications used to treat depressive disorders. These include newer medications--chiefly the selective serotonin reuptake inhibitors (SSRIs)--and the tricyclics and monoamine oxidase inhibitors (MAOIs). The SSRIs--and other newer medications that affect neurotransmitters such as dopamine or norepinephrine--generally have fewer side effects than tricyclics. Each acts on different chemical pathways of the human brain related to moods.

Antidepressant medications are not habit-forming. Although some individuals notice improvement in the first couple of weeks, usually antidepressant medications must be taken regularly for at least 4 weeks and, in some cases, as many as 8 weeks, before the full therapeutic effect occurs. To be effective and to prevent a relapse of the depression, medications must be taken for about 6 to 12 months, carefully following the doctor's instructions. Medications must be monitored to ensure the most effective dosage and to minimize side effects. For those who have had several bouts of depression, long-term treatment with medication is the most effective means of preventing recurring episodes.

The prescribing doctor will provide information about possible side effects and, in the case of MAOIs, dietary and medication restrictions. In addition, other prescribed and over-the-counter medications or dietary supplements being used should be reviewed because some can interact negatively with antidepressant medication. There may be restrictions during pregnancy.

For bipolar disorder, the treatment of choice for many years has been lithium, as it can be effective in smoothing out the mood swings common to this disorder. Its use must be carefully monitored, as the range between an effective dose and a toxic one can be relatively small. However, lithium may not be recommended if a person has pre-existing thyroid, kidney, or heart disorders or epilepsy. Fortunately, other medications have been found helpful in controlling mood swings. Among these are two mood-stabilizing anticonvulsants, carbamazepine (Tegretol®) and valproate (Depakote®). Both of these medications have gained wide acceptance in clinical practice, and valproate has been approved by the Food and Drug Administration for first-line treatment of acute mania. Studies conducted in Finland in patients with epilepsy indicate that valproate may increase testosterone levels in teenage girls and produce polycystic ovary syndrome in women who began taking the medication before age 20.12 Therefore, young female patients should be monitored carefully by a physician. Other anticonvulsants that are being used now include lamotrigine (Lamictal®) and gabapentin (Neurontin®); their role in the treatment hierarchy of bipolar disorder remains under study.

Most people who have bipolar disorder take more than one medication. Along with lithium and/or an anticonvulsant, they often take a medication for accompanying agitation, anxiety, insomnia, or depression. Some research indicates that an antidepressant, when taken without a mood stabilizing medication, can increase the risk of switching into mania or hypomania, or of developing rapid cycling, in people with bipolar disorder. Finding the best possible combination of these medications is of utmost importance to the patient and requires close monitoring by the physician.

Herbal Therapy

In the past few years, much interest has risen in the use of herbs in the treatment of both depression and anxiety. St. John's wort (Hypericum perforatum), an herb used extensively in the treatment of mild to moderate depression in Europe, has recently aroused interest in the United States. St. John's wort, an attractive bushy, low-growing plant covered with yellow flowers in summer, has been used for centuries in many folk and herbal remedies. Today in Germany, Hypericum is used in the treatment of depression more than any other antidepressant. However, the scientific studies that have been conducted on its use have been short-term and have used several different doses.

Because of the widespread interest in St. John's wort, the National Institutes of Health (NIH) is conducting a 3-year study, sponsored by three NIH components--the National Institute of Mental Health, the National Institute for Complementary and Alternative Medicine, and the Office of Dietary Supplements. The study found that St. John's wort was no more effective in treating major depression than placebo (inactive sugar pill). Another NIH study in underway looking at St. John's wort for the treatment of minor depression.

The Food and Drug Administration issued a Public Health Advisory on February 10, 2000. It stated that St. John's wort appears to affect an important metabolic pathway that is used by many drugs prescribed to treat conditions such as heart disease, depression, seizures, certain cancers, and rejection of transplants. Therefore, health care providers should alert their patients about these potential drug interactions. Any herbal supplement should be taken only after consultation with the doctor or other health care provider.


In mild to moderate cases of depression, psychotherapy is also a treatment option. Some short-term (10 to 20 week) therapies have been very effective in several types of depression. "Talking" therapies help patients gain insight into and resolve their problems through verbal give-and-take with the therapist. "Behavioral" therapies help patients learn new behaviors that lead to more satisfaction in life and "unlearn" counter-productive behaviors. Research has shown that two short-term psychotherapies, interpersonal and cognitive-behavioral, are helpful for some forms of depression. Interpersonal therapy works to change interpersonal relationships that cause or exacerbate depression. Cognitive-behavioral therapy helps change negative styles of thinking and behaving that may contribute to the depression.

Electroconvulsive Therapy

For individuals whose depression is severe or life threatening or for those who cannot take antidepressant medication, electroconvulsive therapy (ECT) is useful.11 This is particularly true for those with extreme suicide risk, severe agitation, psychotic thinking, severe weight loss or physical debilitation as a result of physical illness. Over the years, ECT has been much improved. A muscle relaxant is given before treatment, which is done under brief anesthesia. Electrodes are placed at precise locations on the head to deliver electrical impulses. The stimulation causes a brief (about 30 seconds) seizure within the brain. The person receiving ECT does not consciously experience the electrical stimulus. At least several sessions of ECT, usually given at the rate of three per week, are required for full therapeutic benefit.

Treating Recurrent Depression

Even when treatment is successful, depression may recur. Studies indicate that certain treatment strategies are very useful in this instance. Continuation of antidepressant medication at the same dose that successfully treated the acute episode can often prevent recurrence. Monthly interpersonal psychotherapy can lengthen the time between episodes in patients not taking medication.


Reaping the benefits of treatment begins by recognizing the signs of depression. The next step is to be evaluated by a qualified professional. Although depression can be diagnosed and treated by primary care physicians, often the physician will refer the patient to a psychiatrist, psychologist, clinical social worker, or other mental health professional. Treatment is a partnership between the patient and the health care provider. An informed consumer knows her treatment options and discusses concerns with her provider as they arise.

If there are no positive results after 2 to 3 months of treatment, or if symptoms worsen, discuss another treatment approach with the provider. Getting a second opinion from another health or mental health professional may also be in order
Here, again, are the steps to healing:

o Check your symptoms against the list on page.

o Talk to a health or mental health professional.

o Choose a treatment professional and a treatment approach with which you feel comfortable.

o Consider yourself a partner in treatment and be an informed consumer.

o If you are not comfortable or satisfied after 2 to 3 months, discuss this with your provider. Different or additional treatment may be recommended.

o If you experience a recurrence, remember what you know about coping with depression and don't shy away from seeking help again. In fact, the sooner a recurrence is treated, the shorter its duration will be.

Depressive illnesses make you feel exhausted, worthless, helpless, and hopeless. Such feelings make some people want to give up. It is important to realize that these negative feelings are part of the depression and will fade as treatment begins to take effect.

Along with professional treatment, there are other things you can do to help yourself get better. Some people find participating in support groups very helpful. It may also help to spend some time with other people and to participate in activities that make you feel better, such as mild exercise or yoga. Just don't expect too much from yourself right away. Feeling better takes time.


If unsure where to go for help, ask your family doctor, OB/GYN physician, or health clinic for assistance. You can also check the Yellow Pages under "mental health," "health," "social services," "suicide prevention," "crisis intervention services," "hotlines," "hospitals," or "physicians" for phone numbers and addresses. In times of crisis, the emergency room doctor at a hospital may be able to provide temporary help for an emotional problem and will be able to tell you where and how to get further help.

Listed below are the types of people and places that will make a referral to, or provide, diagnostic and treatment services.

o Family doctors

o Mental health specialists such as psychiatrists, psychologists, social workers, or mental health counselors

o Health maintenance organizations

o Community mental health centers

o Hospital psychiatry departments and outpatient clinics

o University- or medical school-affiliated programs

o State hospital outpatient clinics

o Family service/social agencies

o Private clinics and facilities

o Employee assistance programs

o Local medical and/or psychiatric societies