Saturday, November 30, 2013

Things To Do When You're Depressed

There are some basic things to do when your depressed that can really help deal with common depression that many people face each day. Assuming that you're not dealing with clinical depression or another type of depression that demands medical or mental health attention, making some simple choices to add certain things to your life, when you become blue or down feeling, can really help to lift depression and minimize its grip on your psyche. Gathering strength of will to make some lifestyle changes may be the single more difficult thing to do. However, if you decide to take action regarding things to do when your depressed, you will be surprised at how you actually feel almost immediately.

Many people experience some form of depression at some point or other in their lives, whether due to a minor personal setback or serious personal loss. While some people should seek mental health attention if they experience deep depression for over two weeks, many can deal with common depression by making some good personal choices. The only extra help you may really need is some support from friends or family, who encourage you or provide accountability for your new choices. Here are some basic things to do when your depressed:

Exercise and Eat Well

Usually when someone is down or depressed, eating right and exercising are the last things they actually like doing. However, these two things may be the most important first things to do in beginning to lift the suffocating depression in your life. Make a choice to engage in moderate exercise at least 4 days a week for 20 minutes a day, more if possible. Also, plan a menu every week that includes healthy foods free from sugar, processed foods and caffeine. Fresh produce and lean meats like turkey and salmon are great for helping a person feel better.

Choose a New Activity

It's typical for people who feel depressed to withdraw from others, however, this is the time that you should choose to interact with others. Choosing a new hobby that involves other people is a great way to naturally socialize. Join a class, get involved in a sport or join a travel club. You'll be surprised at how this will lift your spirits.

Choose to Think of Others

Depressed people tend to stare at their own problems constantly and can lose touch with the bigger picture in life. Stepping outside of your personal issues and helping someone else can be an invigorating experience, not mention how it can affect another person. Make a point to offer a random act of kindness to someone you work with, a family member, a stranger or a friend. It can be as simple as a pat on the back, a card sent or taking a meal to your next door neighbor. Do something intentional for at least one person, once a day for a solid month. You will find that your despondency will begin to lift, while making these choices about things to do when your depressed.

Understanding Depression in Elderly People - Causes, Signs and Treatments

While you are running from the one place to other believing you will never ever again have enough time to do everything that needs to be done, there are many elderly people counting the minutes before lunch or dinner and bed time. They once might have felt the same and now suddenly they don't know what to do with all the time they have on hand.

Causes of Depression

Not having enough to do to fill the hours in the day is one of the biggest reasons for depression in elderly people.

Loss and depression can go hand in hand. Losing a partner after so many years of being together will obviously cause heartache and sadness. In older people this sadness can easily turn into depression. Health problems and medication can also be a cause. Some prescribed medication has depression as a side effect.

Older people easily feel they have no purpose in life anymore and stop attending social activities or loose interest hobbies they use to love. Sometimes they might not be able to do the hobbies they did before and that can be very depressing. Keen golf players that are not mobile anymore will have to give up this once beloved activity.

Signs of Depression

Constant sadness, fatigue, loss of appetite, the use of drugs or alcohol and sleep disturbances can all be signs of depression. Depression can sometimes be without sadness but they will show other symptoms such as irrelevant concerns about money, health, the safety of family members or even world related problems.

Depression is unhealthy and will have a negative effect on the life quality of the elderly person which is not at all necessary. Depression can also manifest in physical illnesses or illnesses the person already suffer from, can be aggravated.

Ways to Assist Elderly People Suffering From Depression

Getting out of the daily routine and their environment will almost always lift the spirits. Take the person to a place he or she enjoys, may it be a restaurant, a park or even a shopping center. If they find walking difficult borrow or rent a wheel chair for the day.

Arrange an activity with other people of their own age. This can be friends, family or people from the community. Seek treatment if you feel that is the only way they will get passed the depression. There are many ways the elders in a community or family can still make a contribution and they should be allowed doing so.

The Dangers of Accutane Acne Treatment

Don't panic! If you been identified as a candidate for Accutane acne treatment, your doctor has probably weighed the risks and discussed everything with you. This is just a refresher, in case you missed anything and aren't good at deciphering the confusing print in the product information pamphlet!

First, the good stuff - for people who take isotretinoin, or Accutane, acne usually clears up within a month or two and stays gone - for a while, at least! Accutane works by drying up the oil in the sebaceous gland that commonly blocks the pores and causes acne.

Accutane acne medicine does have some side effects, the most common of which are dried lips, skin and nose, nosebleed and irritated eyes and eyelids. These can usually be handled by upping your vitamin E consumption (gotta love those fish oil capsules!) and using a good non oily moisturizer.

Now for the bad stuff. The main danger with Accutane acne medication is birth defects. If you are a woman, you really, really can't risk getting pregnant when you are taking Accutane. Even men who take Accutane are warned not to impregnate a woman while taking it.

If you are female and you want to be prescribed Accutane, you will have to take a pregnancy test - possibly two. Then you have to sign a waiver stating that you understand the risks, and that you understand an abortion might be advised if you do become pregnant (I told you, this is bad stuff!).

The best course of action is to double or triple up on birth control - some physicians say a form of hormonal birth control (such as a patch, pill or shot) plus a spermicidal (foam, lubricant) plus a barrier (condom, etc) is the best way to go. This should give you an idea how serious it is!

The other serious side effects sometimes reported include liver problems, loss of night vision, headaches and depression. Regular blood tests can keep an eye on your liver, and just tell your doctor if you have any vision problems or headaches, and definitely if you become suicidal depressed.

These last few symptoms are very rare (only occurring in less than 5% of patients on Accutane), so you have a very slim chance of experiencing them - it is just good to be prepared just in case, so if you do have a problem you can find out if it is the drug causing it.

Back to the good points - Accutane often will keep working for months or even years after you quit taking it, so if you are a good candidate you might want to try it. Lots of teens have benefited from Accutane, and adult acne sufferers also have experienced success!

Like any prescription medication, Accutane has certain risks, and you are the only one who can decide if they are acceptable or not! Just be sure you know all the facts before signing up for Accutane acne treatment yourself.

Depression in Children: Put a Stop to It Immediately

Here's a shocking statistic: based on a report published by Psychiatric Services, more than a million preschoolers are diagnosed with clinical depression every year. In fact, they composed one of the biggest markets for depression medications.

What does this say? The old belief that only adults can get depression is a myth. Just because they are still young, it doesn't mean they are incapable of feeling deep sadness. There's even a huge chance for them to fall into depression as they don't have enough mechanism to deal with negative emotions.

Causes of Depression in Children

Child depression can be caused by anything, some of which are petty. For example, a child may get upset over an impending move to another state or a loss or fight with a friend.

However, the most common causes of depression in children are trauma and fear. Your kid may be having a hard time coping with divorce, or he or she may already be a victim of bullying in school.

Different Childhood Depression Symptoms

There are many signs and symptoms of child depression. Unfortunately, a lot of parents are not aware or ignore them, so they aren't able to provide the necessary help their child needs.

Here are the common signs and symptoms of child depression:

  • Extreme sadness (constant crying or throwing of tantrums)

  • Isolation or withdrawal (loss of social skills)

  • Panic and anxiety

  • Loss of interest in certain activities (such as sports and play)

  • Pessimism

  • Loss of self-esteem

  • Feeling hopelessness or helplessness

  • Suicidal thoughts
Exhibiting any of the symptoms doesn't mean that your child is depressed. However, it's a whole lot better to be safe than sorry. Consult your doctor immediately.

How to Fight Child Depression

As a parent, you have a very big responsibility to assist your child in coping with the negative emotions. The good thing is as long as you act as fast as possible, you can definitely treat child depression.

Here are some ways on how to deal with it:

Get to know more about depression. There are still plenty of false beliefs about depression, and continuously believing in them may only make matters worse. Today, you'll find dozens of world-renowned anti-depression organizations. You can download learning materials from their websites or you can visit the satellite office closest to you.

Be more observant. As mentioned, don't easily neglect something as a tantrum. It could already be a huge sign of depression. Take note of how often your child is showing signs of depression and their severity.

Talk with your child more often. One of the foremost reasons why a child becomes even more depressed is he or she doesn't really know how to articulate his or her feelings. You are one of the persons who can help him or her do that.

Let your kid listen to subliminal messages.There are subliminal messages or affirmations designed for children who are suffering from depression. By allowing the kid to listen to them, he or she may learn how to become more receptive to positive thoughts.

Dealing With Depression in Children

Childhood is supposed to be a time of growing and developing. It is supposed to be a time of fun and innocence, not dealing with adult issues. Unfortunately there are many children in the world who deal with adult issues. Some of the issues are inherited while some are a result of the environment they live. Depression is an adult issue that some children are dealing with that is not discussed a lot.

Depression haunts a lot of children, sometimes starting as young as six years old but unfortunately it is not diagnosed until they are teenagers. Diagnosing depression in the teenage years can sometimes be too late. As the child keeps getting older the peer pressure and cruelty of other kids gets worse. Bad teasing and rumors can spread like an ugly wildfire with today's technology. Kids text and post things on social network websites that are very mean which makes the victim feel like the whole world is against them. There have been several cases on national news where the end result of this situation was suicide or killing sprees. The key is for parents to catch the signs of depression early to catch the illness before it gets extreme.

One of the first signs is not in the child but in the parents. If one of the parents suffers from depression the child has a small chance of inheriting the illness. When both parents have depression then the chance of their child getting it is greater. Some of the other signs include but are not limited to:

1. The child is bored a lot and does not feel like doing anything.
2. The child complains about headaches and other physical pain often.
3. The child frequently does not want to go to school or anywhere else. They just want to stay at home.
4. The child may lose interest in their favorite activities like sports or music lessons.
5. The eating habits change drastically.
6. The child might begin to become more interested in death.

The best thing for parents to do is to not blame themselves and keep an eye open for drastic behavior changes. For example, if the child is always a good helper around the house and does not mind cleaning up but does not like to do it anymore. It may be that a very social, outgoing child changes to a reserved child with no more friends. The parent should pay attention to a lot of changes coupled with a constant irritated attitude. The child will constantly not be happy.

The best solution for helping a depressed child is not to deny it or put it off as puberty. It is good idea to take the child in for a psychological evaluation. The doctor will decide if the child just needs counseling or they might prescribe a light antidepressant. The parents should read and get as much information as possible about the medication. Research is still being conducted about how antidepressants affect children long-term. If the parent is not happy with the doctor's opinion then there is nothing wrong with getting a second one. The parents should not let the depressed child go without any help at all. Getting the right help will give the child a bright future.

Depression Symptoms and Remedies

Considered to be the most prevalent mental disorder around the world, affecting at least 16% of the population, depression is also the primary cause of disability in the United States.

Symptoms of depression are:

o Appetite change both loss and gain. The result is either to gain weight or to lose weight.

o Body pains such as headaches and back pain that have no physical cause.

o Decrease or total loss of interests on the usual doings that s/he finds interesting before.

o Excessive guilt

o Exhaustion on physical activities including exercise, work, and walking.

o Ideas of suicide

o Irregular sleeping patters that include hypersomnia or excessive sleeping, loss of rapid eye movement (REM) sleep, and insomnia or lack of sleep, and difficulty of getting back to sleep with periods of disturbing dream.

o Irritability and short-temperedness

o Inability to think logically, lack of concentration on duties, and evidences of indecisiveness on things regardless of importance.

o Low self-esteem

o Lack of self-confidence

o Hopelessness and pessimism

o Anxiety attacks

o Significant decrease or loss of interests on things he or she finds pleasurable before.
o The feeling of worthlessness.

Depression remedies:

Nutritional remedies for depression

Dietary modification is said to be one of the ways to treat depression, however, it is often considered as adjunctive, since it is often ineffective of themselves. Other known nutritional remedies for depression are specific amino acids supplements and vitamins and minerals treatment.

Deficiencies in vitamins (B6, B12, and C) and minerals (Folic acid, magnesium) are said to be one of the reasons why depression occurs. Correcting these deficiencies therefore would improve patients suffering from depression.

Natural remedies for depression

Siberian Ginseng, St. John's Wort, passion flower, and Ginko Bilola are some of the popular alternative medicines that can improve patients suffering from depression. There are perfect for people who want to avoid the numerous side effects caused by other antidepressant prescription drugs. Fasting and meditation are also said to relax the spirit, thus enabling the person to calm down and regain inner vibe.

Friday, November 29, 2013

Are You Depressed? Brainwave Entrainment Can Help

Depression, unfortunately, touches many people in this day and age.

Do you have any of the following symptoms?

  • Loss of appetite or increased appetite

  • Inability to concentrate

  • Feelings of extreme sadness

  • Guilt

  • Helplessness

  • Hopelessness

  • Thoughts of death or suicide.

  • Feelings of gloom and inadequacy

  • Feelings of being unable to manage

  • Disheartened and feeling downcast

  • Lethargy

  • Can't sleep or sleep too much

  • Full of misery and despair

  • Your thoughts are confused and unreasonable.

  • You have excessive fear, panic, anxiety.

  • Have trouble coping with daily activities like work, family, or personal hygiene.

  • Have excessive anger and hostility.

  • Drinking or drugging too much.

  • Can't cope with losses like divorce and death.

  • Can't deal with change.

There is a huge likelihood that you are depressed. You are in a state of depression for which there usually is no apparent precipitating cause. The grief you feel when you lose a loved one to death is not depression unless is starts interfering with your life and goes on for a very long time.

Sometimes depression is caused by the lack of a feel good hormone called serotonin, that is produced from an amino acid called tryptophan. Stimulation of certain areas of the brain with specific frequencies, can re-activate the release of serotonin. Brainwave entrainment can effectively alter your dominant brainwave frequency by introducing audio and/or light repeated, rhythmic pulses to the brain. After a short period of time, the brain will mimic the stimulus and alter the brain state.

Brainwave entrainment can make new neural networks in the brain, releasing serotonin reducing the symptoms of depression. With repeated sessions, the new neural pathways with become your new normal brain status. Stimulation of these pathways will strengthen their connections and the old pathways, by way of lack of stimulation, will atrophy.

Brainwave Entrainment Can Reduce Depression By

  • Regulating your sleep. Lack of sleep can make you very depressed.

  • Helping with sensory functions such as sight, sound, taste, smell and touch, so you don't feel so numb.

  • Lowering of the stress hormone coritisol that depresses the body's feel good hormones.

  • Reducing feelings of anxiety.

  • Regulating appetite, taking away the power of cravings...lack of serotonin makes a person crave carbs, caffeine, sugar and booze.

  • Raising energy levels. Fatigue is a sure sign of depression.

  • Elevating quality of sleep, moods, and libido.

  • Raising serotonin levels which can lead to good health changes.

  • Taking away migraines and headaches.

  • Helping your whole brain function-helps in the process of sending and receiving messages.

  • Reducing obsessive-compulsive thoughts..

  • Reducing addiction symptoms and withdrawal.

Sometimes depression might need a chemical prescription to help alleviate the symptoms. Cognitive and behavioural therapy is always good.

Brainwave entrainment is a powerful, effective alternative method of depression control, that can work very well with other methods or alone.

You don't have to suffer anymore.

There is hope.

Symptoms And Signs Of Depression

Symptoms are the things that a person feels. For example a person may feel pain from a burn or may feel dejected because of a bad experience.

Signs are what others observe. Examples of these are when one person observes another person exhibiting the signs of apparently being in pain for some reason, or when they notice that somebody is not being their usually bright self with a positive outlook on life.

If you feel that you may be suffering from depression then you will need to check out your feelings as well as your actions.

If you are concerned that a loved one may be depressed, you will need to observe their behavior and make judgments about how they may be feeling. It may even be advisable to ask the person how they are feeling. However, you may get a vague response and even a sharp retort. Your ability to use tact may be put to the test.

Before we proceed, we need to realize that short term feelings of "the blues" are quite common and do not necessarily constitute a state of depression. Things such as, the death of a loved one, a failed relationship, the loss of a job, or the disappointment of missing out on a promotion, etc., can make us feel sad for quite a while. However, time tends to heal most wounds and we generally pick ourselves up and get on with life again. It is when a reasonable amount of time has passed, and the condition has not improved, that we need to consider the possibility of depression.

Let us look at the symptoms of depression:-

* Low self esteem.

* Inability to sleep well at night. Managing to get to sleep but often waking in the early hours
and unable to return to sleep.

* Oversleeping or wanting to sleep during the day.

* Constant feelings of fatigue.

* Being unable to enjoy life as well as you used to. [Chronic low grade depression].

* Not being able to function to the best of your capabilities.

The symptoms mentioned above are typical of the depression condition known as dysthymia, or as the ancient Greeks called it, ill humor. It usually has a slow onset and persists for two years or more.

With more severe cases of depression [clinical, or major, depression] some of the following symptoms will also be noted:-

* Change of mood from being ill humored at the beginning of the day to being much better at the end of the day.

* A change in appetite. Appetite may decrease and result in weight loss in many cases, especially in older people. In other cases binge eating may occur and weight may increase.

* A lack of interest in hobbies and other interests. You just cannot be bothered doing what you used to enjoy in the past.

* A loss of libido. Sexual activities diminish or cease.

* Feeling sad or crying for no apparent reason.

* Having feelings of shame, guilt and/or worthlessness.

* Feeling vulnerable or anxious.

* Feeling overwhelmed, or that you are lost in a fog or in a deep chasm.

* Inability to make decisions or to concentrate on a subject.

* Becoming withdrawn from society, including family and friends. Wanting to be alone and then often feeling rejected when you are left alone.

* Being easily agitated and angry.

* Failing to look after yourself [appearances, hygiene, well being etc.].

* Considering, or causing, self harm. This can culminate in suicide in severe cases. Statistics suggest that 80% of suicides relate to people who were suffering from depression.

The above sets of conditions are known as unipolar conditions.

When a person experiences extreme mood swings from being "on top of the world" to being "down in the dumps" this is known as bipolar condition and was previously called "manic depression".

Depression can be cured, and because suicide is a real possibility you need to seek help very soon if you are suffering from it. Talk to somebody about your feelings because a problem shared is a problem halved. I am sure that you will find a sympathetic ear without too much trouble.

Make sure that one such person is a doctor. One factor associated with depression is often an imbalance of chemicals within the body. Doctors can provide quick relief with the modern medications that are available nowadays. More on this, and causes of the imbalance, will be in future articles.

If you have a loved one whom you consider to be in need of help, you will have to use a lot of tact and discretion when broaching the subject. Perhaps drawing their attention to this article may be useful.

The first step to recovery is to acknowledge that help is needed and that it is readily available. Remember that when a person has reached the bottom of a pit the only direction left to go is up.

Health - Depression & Broken Heart

You don't have to suffer in silence. In most cases of panic attack, it usually starts with depression. A female reporter in Hong Kong who successfully juggled the demands of writing for publications around the world suddenly suffered panic attack. She often had panic attacks as she was overwhelmed by feelings of isolation, hopelessness, inadequacy and failure. She would always excuse herself and pretended to have urgent private calls to make so that she could get out and calm down.

A cartoonist for a famous Japanese magazines; suddenly hit a dry spell in 1986 and she was afraid to get out of bed in the morning. She stopped eating and lost seven kilos within a few days. She was left without getting any assignments for a month and spent her time lying in bed, smoking and drinking and was overwhelmed with thoughts of dying. Both the female reporter and cartoonist were suffering from clinical depression.

There are millions of people like them and they kept the illness to themselves. In Japan alone there are more than six millions people suffering from depression according to Dr Takahashi Toru of the Toru Clinic in Tokyo. It is estimated that one in 13 people aged 24 to 64 suffered from depression according to a study done by Singapore National Mental Health survey.

We seldom hear about depression just thirty years ago but the world is different now. People were different then, but presently many human beings have lost their value of life. Many have lost their conscience and killing is everywhere. People live in fear from many kinds of threats and even in the comfort of their homes, danger is there. There is no peace even to just go marketing for fresh vegetables. A bomb may explode anytime, anyplace.

Financial security is one of the main causes for depression. Jobless people or those hardly can make end meet, are usually victims of depression which can after some time of suffering start to have panic attacks. Depressive disorders range from dysthymia - low grade, chronic depression - to bipolar disorder, or manic depression, which causes extreme swings between depressive lows and manic high. Depression remains widely misunderstood and sufferers lead a double life. One minute full of confidence and another minute worse than a little mouse when panic attack. Depression is a taboo among Chinese and if people know that you are depressed, they will avoid you.

I should say broken heart is the worst mental blues and almost everyone gets the blues once in a lifetime. Those who have not experience it are lucky or maybe they have never fallen in love before. They will not be able to grasp the anguish depression brings. It's so emotionally intense that it paralyses you and says one sufferer, "You never know when it will end, the pain is so overwhelming that you want to end it all."

People will sometimes give advice with the best intentions for broken heart but says Siti Mohammad, a young female accountant who has lived with depression for much of her life: "Sometimes my relatives will tell me to look at the positive side of things. They say, 'You have to be strong and believe in God.' They make it sound as if I could just snap out of it. If it was that simple, I wouldn't be like this."

Depression is often inadequately treated or not treated at all because the truth of broken heart may not be admitted by the sufferers. For instance, many Malays believe the emotions lie in the liver and will complain about stomach soreness rather than admit to depression. Among the Chinese, the heart is often seen as the source of emotions, so they complain about chest discomfort. Singapore National University's Kua says these cultural factors lead to misdiagnosis or no diagnosis at all in as many as one-third of cases.

For the elderly, physical ailments can mask symptoms of depression (it is often confused with Alzheimer's disease), and there is a belief, even in the medical community, that depression is simply a fact of an older person's life. According to a study conducted in the 1980s by Dr Lee Aik Hoe, president of the Malaysian Mental Health Association, showed that three-quarters of people who had attempted suicide also suffered from depression.

Rose Lee's depression nearly killed her. As a teenager, she tumbled into a black pit and said, "I was severely depressed - the pain was terrible. It seemed logical to kill myself." Richard Ng of Kuala Lumpur said he lost his father to suicide. "He displayed signs of depression - being withdrawn and losing his appetite - signs that I recognized but did nothing about, but when he committed suicide, I was shattered."

The road to recovery is a tough one but it can be treated. If it is not because of broken heart, then the chances of recovery is good with medication. If it is because of broken heart, then there is no medicine that can cure a broken heart. There are many drugs that physicians can prescribe and certain antidepressants really work effectively so as to allow the sufferers to get on with life. But drug may have side effects like insomnia and sexual dysfunction, professional help is advised in such a case to take the right type and also avoid the risk of taking an overdose.

One of the best rescues is interpersonal and cognitive counselling. Therapy can help to change a patient's thinking and reappraise their external circumstances. Interpersonal therapy focuses on specific-related problems, while cognitive therapy tries to counter the feelings of worthlessness and hopelessness that plague those who are depressed. In Malaysia the "Befrienders" is doing an excellent voluntarily job to make life worth living. The 24-hour helpline, modelled on the Samaritans in the United Kingdom, is one of the oldest services in Asia. It has more than 200 volunteers and fielded 24,000 calls a year.

Suicide is a grave sin according to spiritual teachings in almost every religion. Certain religion says that if a person commits suicide, he will also commit suicide for his next seven future lives. I had a relative who committed suicide many years ago. She was one of the most beautiful women in my hometown and married to one of the richest men there. Very fortunate during her younger days because of her beauty, but when her husband passed away early in life, she was cheated of everything she possessed by a conman who only wanted her properties. Unable to take the pain of her broken heart and loss of all her possessions, she took her life.

Author: T.A Chew

Depression: 14 Universal Laws for Recovery

The Law of Blue

Just sort of feeling blue, kinda out of it, gets confused with being depressed. We all get the blues from time to time, and they pass.

The Law of Sad

Feeling sad, while not pleasant, makes sense in the context of the situation.

The Law of Clinical

True clinical depression is not just feeling blue or sad. It's both a biological and psychological struggle that's often best treated with a combination of medication and counseling.

The Law of Boot Straps

When you are depressed, some well-meaning people will tell you to just "pull yourself up by your own bootstraps." The problem is when you are clinically depressed, you don't have bootstraps.

The Law of Music, Part 1

Music can either lift you up or keep you down. Listening to certain kinds of music while depressed is like pouring gasoline on a fire and then wondering why it gets worse.

The Law of Music, Part 2

Make your own list of uplifting, positive, energizing music.

The Law of Coping

You need to have a variety of tools in your tool bag to effectively cope with depression. Here's a few suggested tools:

Talk about it. Trying to handle depression on your own is like trying to do your own open-heart surgery.

Write out your feelings. Getting it out on paper can get it out of you.

Take a drive and ease your mind.

Cry if you need to. There's a great line in Pat Conroy's novel Beach Music that goes something like: "Men die younger than women because men have not washed their faces enough with their own tears."

Exercise. If I can get a client that is depressed to exercise regularly, I know we are part of the way home.

The Law of Lifestyle

I've come to believe that there is such a thing as a "depressive lifestyle." Over-working, over-stressing, expectations of perfection, a critical, complaining and cynical spirit, focusing on the negative in life, feeding a sense of hopelessness through what you read and listen to, all these things contribute to a depressing life.

The Law of Discovery

Discovering they are depressed, while frightening for many clients, also gives a name and a beginning understanding of the struggles they have experienced.

The Law of Warning Signs

Many people feel like depression sort of snuck up on them. They didn't see it coming. As you work your way out of depression, it's crucial to develop a list of "early warning signs." These allow you to take early action to prevent a recurrence.

The Law of "Like Minded People"

If you surround your self with depressed people, you're likely to stay depressed. Or get depressed if you weren't already. And if you surround your self with positive people, it's a lot harder to get and stay depressed.

The Law of Focus

Focusing on everything that is wrong with your life and the world is a great way to stay stuck in depression. By the same token, focusing on everything that is right with your life and the world is a great way to move on out of depression.

The Law of Recovery

The really cool news is that people can and do recover from depression every day. Recovery begins with the decision to recover, and then selecting the best guides and creating the best map for your journey back to the passion of life.

The Law of Getting Stronger

This one comes from a special client of mine who has a wealth of experience in this area. Instead of only praying that circumstances change for the better (which is a good thing to do) pray and work on getting your self stronger to deal with whatever comes your way.

As Chicago, one of my favorite bands still sings:

"I'm feelin' stronger every day............"

Bipolar Test - Seven Steps In Diagnosis

The seriousness of bipolar cases is indisputable. In fact, many patients who have symptoms of a manic-depression state can be misdiagnosed. Another important fact is that a bipolar test can actually take years before a person is correctly diagnosed. Simply put, this mental illness is very difficult to detect.

When a person with manic-depression disorder is high or manic, it is not surprising that he won't feel the need for a test. Therefore, only the depressive tendencies are diagnosed most often. The result is an inaccurate diagnosis of the patient, concluding the symptoms as depression only when it is actually a bipolar issue.

When a doctor conducts a bipolar test, the patient will be asked with a series of questions, assessments, laboratory exams, and constant observations. These are strategically outlined to determine if you have the disorder and to understand the level of concern. The tests will consist of the following points:

* Origin and cycles. It is advised that you recall the details as to when your manic-depression episodes started. The frequency of your bipolar cycle will also be important in diagnosing your problem. This will help your doctor in understanding the level of seriousness of your problem.

* Your family background and personal history. The bipolar test will also include questions of these types. Bipolar disorder is often caused by your childhood environment and may be attributed to your family relationships.

* Assessment of your mental health. Depending on the level of concern, it is possible that you will be interviewed separately to determine your emotional quotient, memory and thinking capabilities, and your reasoning skills.

* Medical history. The doctor may also ask you about drugs that had been prescribed to you in the past years. If necessary, he or she will also ask if you had been taking illegal ones. Drugs are possible causes of bipolar disorder.

* Lab tests. When necessary and if you have indicated that you have been taking drugs other than those prescribed, you may be subjected to a laboratory examination.

* Reference. Especially if the doctor finds that you have a serious bipolar disorder, he or she may inquire about you from your friends and family members. If your doctor asks for names of your friends, give them to him or her.

* Observation tests. You may have to undergo a series of tests that aim to observe your behavioral patterns and mood swings. Sometimes it is even necessary to consider observing your physique and how you dress.

Diagnosing Children

A bipolar test can reveal many symptoms of this problem. But because symptoms share the same signs as that of other mental illness issues, there is more difficulty in diagnosing children for a bipolar test. Kids, especially at a very young age may have characteristics similar to bipolar signs.

Since children are "normally" delinquent, anxious, and their learning curve is still developing constantly at this time, it is more difficult to diagnose them. A child's mood swings also share similar characteristics with bipolar symptoms. Psychosis and attention-deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) can sometimes be mistaken for bipolar disorder.

The Real Reason Why People Upset Us - Anger Management From a Spiritual Perspective

On Facebook and Twitter I often post quotes from various people about topics I'm interested in, or that I think other people would benefit from. Recently on Facebook, somebody sent me the following private message:

"Everything that irritates us about others can lead us to an understanding about ourselves" - Carl Jung

Chris - I don't understand, can you help please?

After typing almost a complete response, I realized it was long enough to be an article... and so I decided to do exactly that - turn my answer into an article. I hope you enjoy...:)

I hope I can help... but this is a deep understanding that really takes personal exploration to understand. The simple version is: As long as somebody else's words or actions can upset us, then that means our own enjoyment of life is dependent upon other people. Our happiness is never our own, but rather, 'belongs' to the people who upset us.

In order to move past this difficulty, we must choose to become self-aware... even at the most difficult times. Therefore, every time we are upset by somebody else, it would help us to ask ourselves, "Why does this upset me?" And then when we have an answer, again ask "Why does that upset me?"

The intention is to discover the root cause of why that person's behavior upsets us.

For example, if a partner leaves their cups around all the time, we might be upset. But why? Well we say "It's disrespectful." Is it really? Why do we believe it's disrespectful? We might discover that it is what one of our parents did as a child. And then we may remember all the fights our parents had over the exact same issue.

By understanding that, we then see that the real reason we are upset by our current partner leaving the cups out has nothing to do with disrespect, but instead, it is a reminder of all the past arguments from our parents.

That's a *very* brief and limited example... and I hope that you will discover your own answers through this exploration.

Just remember from now on - every time something upsets you - just pause and ask yourself why... because you're usually not upset because of what's happening in the present, but because of something that happened in the past.

Another example: Your partner comes home late. You're upset and say they're disrespectful. But when you feel your body, you notice you feel -scared- so you ask yourself why. What you discover is that somewhere inside you, there is a fear of being abandoned... and when they come home late, it makes you worry they might be leaving you. And maybe you discover that's because as a child you never knew when one of your parents would come home, or perhaps your parents divorced, or perhaps one parent left for a regular routine trip and never came home (died, ran away, etc).

And so you discover that your partner coming home late upsets you not because it's disrespectful, but because you have a fear of being abandoned.

This logic is true of ALL things which upset us.

It happens to varying degrees... some smaller than others. Sometimes it's so minor we won't even notice it, such as us being frustrated that a little child has stepped on our toes again. Or maybe it is a huge issue, one which has come up in a relationship (personal, or professional) many many times and is never resolved.

Whatever it is, if you want to experience more peace in your life, just be like a child again... remember to ask "Why?"

Thursday, November 28, 2013

Low Cost Stress Relievers

We live in a world of constant motion and high demands. Parents feel obligated to commit their children to Karate lessons, music lessons, and sports activities. Our airwaves are bombarded with news about an ailing economy, stock market slumps, and terrorist threats. In addition, we have all those technological gadgets and social media commitments. The mental health community has come out with data about depression in teens due to competition on Facebook. Several have committed suicide over personal cyber attacks. The world was so much simpler years ago. We are simply not biologically capable of processing all that information. The high demands of computer usage, iPads, and other devices can put all our senses on overload.

So what can we do? How can we combat this constant barrage on our psyches? I have a few thoughts on creating a New and Positive You using simple low cost stress relievers.

1. Exercise: Many of us have sedentary jobs involving sitting at computers or working in offices performing jobs requiring little physical activity. Unless we are working outdoors lifting boulders all day long, most of us need to supplement jobs and other responsibilities with three to five thirty minute exercise sessions per week. Exercise raises levels of endorphins, enabling us to handle stress more competently. Researchers have found there are mental health benefits from exercise, including reduced stress and increased confidence. It helps prevent heart disease and may help reduce the chance of developing dementia.

2. Meditation: According to Dr. Shu, acupuncturist, meditating on positive images raises levels of neurotransmitters and can thus be a powerful antidote for depression. It also lowers blood pressure and stabilizes mood.

3. Stress relieving products:

A. chamomile tea
B. candles
C. Hiimalayan tea
D. Meditation CDS
E. Bubble baths

4. Reframing: One powerful way to recast negative events is to shine the light of positive energy on them. Thinking of a beautiful picture, or a soothing piece of music can ease the pain of trauma. In Cry Depression, Celebrate Recovery, I talk about soothing the pain of my father's alcoholism with memories of joyful family moments.

5. Music: All indigenous cultures include music in their ceremonial events. When groups get together in song and dance, they create a collective neurological brain symbiosis. As they dance, sing, and chant their energies begin to fall into sync and they create as a group. Song and movement enable individuals to integrate the five senses and ultimately help groups to form a solid spiritual sense of power. How does this translate into everyday use? Research has shown that just twenty minutes of listening to Mozart enhances spatial relationship abilities. The result is transient, lasting about ten minutes. If such a short exposure produces immediate results then one has to wonder if daily musical experience may result in long term brain health. Think of what our lives would be like with no music!

Quotes: Wellbeing involves more than eating right and exercising. "To reduce stress and be truly well, you need to take care of all six dimensions of wellness: physical, mental, emotional, social, vocational and spiritual. It can be a lot more fun than you think!" Kathleen Vessanbisi

Proverbs 17:22 puts it like this, "A happy heart is like a good medicine and a cheerful mind works healing." Notice, when we're good-natured and full of joy, taking time to laugh, taking time to play, it's like taking a good medicine. That's what helps us to stay healthy. In fact, medical science tells us that people that laugh, it boosts their immune system. Laughter reduces blood pressure. People that laugh regularly are 40% less likely to have a heart attack than people that don't laugh regularly. Laughter triggers the right side of the brain, which helps release creativity, helps us to make better decisions. Laughter activates the body's natural tranquilizers that not only help us to calm down but it helps us to sleep better. Joel Osteen

Stress can often come from unresolved issues surrounding trauma. James W. MacCartney in his new book, Crisis to Creation gives insight on how to transform post traumatic stress into post traumatic growth. I highly recommend this book as a powerful transformational tool. It is available on his He and his wife Elke also go about the country speaking on this very important issue.

Gaining Control of Your Relationship With Money - Know the Signs of Depression

Dealing with financial issues can be very difficult. You can expect to run into the occasional blues, but if you simply can't shake your negative feelings, you may be clinically depressed. If you have major depression issues, you may find it extremely difficult - if not impossible - to move forward.

Major Depression can really be a debilitating disease - even fatal in some cases. The good news is that it can be treated in most cases. There are a number of signs that may indicate that you are clinically depressed.

If, after you read the following list of depression symptoms, you believe that you may be depressed, schedule an appointment with a mental health professional. If you can't afford to do so, you'll want to contact your local chapter of the Mental Health Association. They'll be able to help you find an help at an affordable price.

Keep in mind that you needn't have all of these symptoms to be depressed.

Signs of depression include:

  • Continual sadness

    Feelings of worthlessness, hopelessness, or guilt for no apparent reason

  • Constant anxiety or irritability

  • Lethargy

  • Loss of interest in activities that you used to enjoy

  • A change in sleep patters. You ant to sleep all the time, you have trouble falling asleep, or you aren't getting a full night's sleep

  • Difficulty concentrating and making decisions

  • An excessive number of stomach or headaches

  • Loss of interest in easting or a feeling a need to overeat

  • You find yourself using alcohol and/or illegal drugs to avoid reality

  • Constantly thinking about death or even suicide.

    If you have these thoughts, you should get help immediately. Call 800-273-8255 to connect immediately with someone who can help you deal with your feelings.

The Imperfection of Perfectionism

Many people strive for some form of perfection. Whether in their work, in their appearance, in their relationships, in their expectations of others...There are a number of problems with perfectionism not the least of which it is simply not possible. Perfection is an ideal, which, almost by definition, is unattainable. Like trying to stand in the middle of a rainbow; as it's approached, it recedes. The other problem is that the criteria used to gauge perfection are suspect. How did we arrive at these criteria? Is it valid criteria? And, even if we were to judge it as valid criteria, will it remain so through time? If the criteria for perfection changes, then how perfect could it have been in the first place? Perfection suggests no room for improvement, the ultimate, the top of the line...can't get any better. It's perfect! The irony of perfectionism is that to hold that high, high standard, as an ideal, is an imperfection; it is an irrational and illogical standard by which to gauge and determine success or happiness.

Those who strive for perfection often unwittingly make their lives somewhat miserable. There are a number of emotions that accompany the perfectionist attitude. Consider the following questions...

  • Do you get angry when you or others make mistakes?

  • Are you unwilling to make compromises?

  • Do you become easily disappointed?

  • Are you impatient?

  • Do you strive to be better than others?

  • Would you rather do something yourself rather than delegate it to someone else?

  • Do you feel that being average is equivalent to failure?

If you answered yes to these questions, then there is a good chance you have some strong perfectionistic attitudes towards yourself and others. And, you're setting yourself up for disappointment. It is possible to be less than perfect and satisfied. Let's take a closer look at perfectionism and how it can become simple satisfaction with acceptable performance.

Perfectionism is a conditioned belief established in the mind during childhood. There is no absolute guideline or rule that says you must be perfect, or else. But, there may be a thought pattern in the mind that says just that. Parents, teachers, coaches and other adults in the life of a child can easily imprint the attitude and belief that anything less than perfection is failure. Exactly what perfection entails is often nebulous and ends up being what the adult says it is. This then teaches the child that perfection is attained only when the adult, the authority, so says. As an adult, any achievement of perfection would then necessarily need to be confirmed by some authority figure. Often that authority figure is projected on the spouse, supervisor, manager or some adult in a position of perceived superiority. Excessive striving for approval by that authority becomes the means to obtain perfection which can cause undue stress and pressure which can then actually diminish performance resulting in approval ratings that are less than desired and then causing frustration, anger and depression. This may then cause an increase in striving, along with more stress and anxiety which further diminished truly effective performance, and the sought after approval. It becomes a downward spiral ending in excessive depressive moods, low motivation, decreased self-value and, in some cases, suicidal ideation. It need not be like this.

The critical factor in perfectionism is what is referred to as "external locus of control" which simply means that we seek the confirmation of our perfection from outside ourselves. Even if we ourselves hold the standard of perfection, we internalized that standard from adults while growing up. It is not a standard we have consciously, intelligently and maturely chosen or have derive after some deliberate thought. Of course, we may use the word "perfect" in a generic sense referring to acceptable, or even better than acceptable, behavior or performance. And, that behavior or performance is gauged by realistic and reasonable criteria. But, that is not perfectionism. Perfectionism, by definition and by the conditioning in which it was internalized in the mind, suggests a standard both unreachable and only confirmed by an outside source. As such, the first step in overcoming perfectionism is to recognize from whence comes our high, high standard and then to adjust that standard according to our own internal framework. That internal framework ought be based on a clear and rational assessment of individual capacities, interests and motivations. An understanding of reality based personal and professional goals, along with a rational understanding of what it means if those goals are not met, is important in re-evaluating exactly what determines success, as opposed to achieving perfection.

There are several beliefs that can run through the mind reinforcing perfectionism and those need to be changed. For example, the simple belief that "if I am not successful, then I am a failure" is perfectionistic. There is no middle ground. It is either success OR failure. There are no gradations. In fact, it is possible to be 80% successful, and that in no way means failure. Even 30% success is not failure; it simply suggests a need for improvement. In that sense, failure is simply feedback showing what needs to change to achieve a higher rate of success. And, indeed, viewing failure as feedback suggests there really is no such thing as failure, only feedback.

Another common belief is that "If I am not the best, I am no good." This highly competitive attitude is based on the idea that the best is perfect and anything less than the best is the worst. It is also, like failure and success, devoid of gradations. It is externally oriented as the best is determined by comparison with others rather than internal standards of excellence. However, even internal standards can be highly unrealistic having been internalized as a child from overly demanding parents. It's ironic that striving to be the best can cause increased stress and anxiety that reduces the chances of performing well, let alone at one's best. And, by taking a more casual approach, there is less tension and pressure, and performance tends to be better. It's a lot easier to be your best when you don't have to be your best for fear of being the worst-and perhaps even being punished.

Personal satisfaction and happiness can come from successes and achievements that in turn come from effective performance and intelligent behavior. But, there is no evidence whatsoever that "perfection" equates to real satisfaction or genuine happiness; but there is evidence to suggest that striving for perfection causes excessive stress, pressure and tension that then gives rise to anxiety, depression, psychosomatic symptoms and a general dissatisfaction and unhappiness. That is the imperfection of perfection. Why not learn to be less than perfect; you'll be happier and healthier.

Thirteen Signs of Clinical Depression

Clinical depression is the same as the terms "major depressive disorder" and "unipolar depression." This condition is accompanied by an intense feeling of sadness, melancholy or despair. Such condition of the person results in self-isolation and disruption of the person's daily activities. The signs of clinical depression must be identified early.

This condition is different and more serious than mere anxiety depression that we normally experience from time to time. Having a progressive clinical depression could lead to substance abuse such as drugs and alcohol and self-harm. Worst cases could lead to suicidal ideation.

It's Normal To Get Depressed And Anxious

Depression and anxiety are normal reactions of the human brain and its way of meeting stressing situations head on. It's human's defense mechanism. Nonetheless, a person must know how to bounce back from a cycle of depression and anxiety quickly. It must not take longer than a few days and without help from any types of medications for anxiety and depression.

How To Spot Clinical Depression

If the person has an intense sadness that stems from reasons that happened in the past two months or longer, or is having a melancholic feeling and despair for no apparent reason, it will be best to watch out for the other signs of clinical depression.

Shown here are thirteen signs of clinical depression. If the person experiences a combination of these signs for more than two weeks, it is better to address the situation. Seek professional psychiatric or medical help. Clinical depression can be more easily treated at the earlier stages.

  • The concentration of a person with clinical depression is impaired.

  • A clinically depressed person is unable to feel pleasure. Even the things that used to please him before seem to have no effect once he is into depression.

  • The sleep of a depressed person is disturbed. Once he wakes up in the middle of the night, he finds it hard to fall back to sleep again.

  • A depressed person has no appetite for food. Even favorite foods seem to be tasteless.

  • The depressed person still feels tired even after sleeping for long hours.

  • There is an intense feeling of guilt, hopelessness and helplessness in a depressed person. There is an event that happens in the past that seems to nag the person and caused him not to forgive himself or to feel extremely hopeless.

  • At work, the depressed person seems to decline in productivity. He no longer delivers the way he used to.

  • There is a remarkable change in the personality of the person that other people might find weird.

  • Some people with depression experience extreme promiscuity.

  • Others tend to isolate themselves, as if building a world of their own.

  • Others resort to substance abuse such as alcohol and drugs.

  • A sign of clinical depression in the worst stage is a small voice that continuously nags the person, providing negative thoughts. This small voice is created by the person's continuous self-critical thoughts until it gained momentum and became independent. The person will no longer be able to control it once it has the momentum. It is the reason that causes the person to commit homicidal acts and suicide.

  • Some depressed persons want to commit suicide.

Clinical depression is a progressive mental disease. The ability to spot the earlier symptoms of clinical depression and having the proper medical and psychological treatment will prevent the onset of the more serious signs. If the person reaches the latter signs as mentioned above, hospitalization might be necessary to keep him from inflicting self-injuries.

How To Treat Clinical Depression

If you have signs clinical depression, a psychiatrist will conduct different types of tests to know if what you are feeling is just a simple case of normal blues. There are written tests and interviews. After a few visits to a psychiatrist's clinic, he will then know if you have clinical depression or other types of mood disorder. Clinical or major depression requires medications. A psychiatrist may also recommend hospital confinement, especially if the manic behavior is already in an advanced stage.

Risks VS Rewards - Quitting Your Day Job to Become an Entrepreneur

Do you dread going to work? Feel like you were made to something else with your life other than working for "the man?" Or is your hobby starting to pay you more than your day job? If you answered "yes" to any of these questions, then it's time to move on and follow your purpose. But first, we must identify the risks and rewards of quitting your day job and becoming an entrepreneur. Finally, we will learn 10 key strategies for implementing your purpose because although entrepreneurship may be calling you, are you really ready for it?

Okay! Let's be real, here. There are risks to quitting one's job, but many are just plain myths that need debunking because they are preventing you from following your purpose. Here are the top five myths to reasons why not to quit your day job:

o I will have no Health Insurance

o I will lose or not have Retirement Funds

o I will be homeless

o I need thousands of dollars to start my business and to survive

o There is no security in entrepreneurship

Now here is reality. First, you can purchase private health insurance that may cost more, but it's better to be safe than sorry. Google health insurance options online such as or call your local insurance agency such as Nationwide Insurance. Second, you can rollover your 401(k) plans or others into a ROTH IRA. Talk to your financial advisor/planner for more information as they are a resource that everyone should use to help make sound financial decisions like quitting one's job. Third, your home can be protected through insurance and other special programs. Again, speak with your financial advisor/planner to learn about your options. Fourth and most pivotal to your success, is plan, plan, plan, budget, budget and here, again, is where your financial advisor/planner will come in handy. Are you beginning to see a pattern here? Visit your local Small Business Administration technology center or go to their website at They can provide you with a plethora of information on funding options and more. Finally, tomorrow is not promised to anyone. If you plan smartly and be clear about your objectives, quitting your job will not lead you to the unemployment line.

Now, as previously stated, you must plan smartly and be clear about your objectives. Quitting your day job is a big step, and one must not become caught up in the myths about the rewards of being your own boss. So, here are some myths about the rewards of quitting your day job.

o I don't have to answer to anyone

o I can set my own hours and work when I want

o I have an idea that is going to make millions

o I can go on vacation when I want to

Stop right there! If these are the reasons you want to quit your day job, you and your family are in trouble. The reality to entrepreneurship is that you do have to answer to someone - YOUR CUSTOMERS/CLIENTS. Entrepreneurship is not an 8 hour job, but a 24 hour job. Most businesses, depending on the industry, do not see a profit for the first 2-5 years. And can you say TAXES, EMPLOYEES, MARKETING and RENT/LEASE FEES? Finally, who's going to cover the shop when you are on vacation? Many entrepreneurs have not made that leap to business owner where the company can now function without the owner/founder's presence. You are the sales clerk, janitor, cashier, secretary and CEO until the business has "arrived."

The bottom line is that the decision to quit one's job is very personal and subjective. It is not something that can necessarily be predicted as being the right thing or the wrong thing to do at the time of the decision-making process. But is something that can work to you and your family's advantage if it fits in line with your purpose and with careful planning.
So, are you ready to turn in your resignation? Wait! I want to leave you with 10 key strategies for implementing your purpose before you take that leap of faith into entrepreneurship.

10 Key Strategies to Implementing Your Purpose

1. Create a list of the things you are good at and enjoy doing: What is your calling? Write down your vision

2. Create a list of pros and cons about your current job: Be real and not just make up excuses here. Perhaps you will find that you might not need to leave the job just yet, but can leverage a raise or a newly created position tailor-made for you.

3. Plan a long-term and short-term list of goals that relate to 1 & 2: Speak with a counselor at a local women's business center to help with this.

4. Tell your Crying Angel Network or your business consultant/coach your ideas and goals: Get a fresh perspective from someone who is not your family or circle.

5. Before quit job, see if you can negotiate a part-time deal: Don't leave until all avenues have been exhausted - keep a part-time job until income from purpose super cedes or matches income from job.

6. Research access to capital: Capital can come in many different forms such as friends, family, loans, and savings. Bottom line: you must have a money plan.

7. Live within your means: You should start a budget and have been living by it at least 3 months before quit your job, if possible. If not, call your financial advisor/planner immediately.

8. Network, Network, Network: You can use the traditional (i.e., BNI groups, workshops & seminars) and/or non-traditional (i.e., post office, birthday parties, grocery store), but you must learn how to network and use your net to work for you.

9. Talk to your spouse before you jump into the water: Get their support or understanding, if not both, because this decision will impact them for a long time to come. They need to know where they stand in all of this because they will be making sacrifices with you. This is not about just you.

10. Keep a sense of humor because you are going to need it: That's right! Laughter is the remedy for insanity and depression, so keep laughing and enjoy the journey.

One of my favorite inspirational quotes says, "Ambition knows no obstacles" (Chinese Proverb). I want to add to that that ambition is a curse without careful planning. That is not to say that you will be able to plan everything out, but when the bumps come up - and they will - you, your company and your family will be better equipped to handle them.

Powerful James Allen As A Man Thinketh Quotes

Some As A Man Thinketh quotes by James Allen can save you money and suffering. Many of his quotes are deceptively simple but have a powerful effect when put into practice. There is one that comes to mind every time I see an ad for antidepressants "There is no physician like cheerful thought for dissipation the ills of the body." What a silly idea you may say but it is true.

The fact that drug companies are willing to place high dollar full page ads in newspapers and spots on TV indicate many people are not following James Allen's sage advice. What fascinates is that many people are willing to suffer maladies caused by drugs taken to cure depression when they already possess the remedy.

A drug vendor stated in an ad that their antidepressant medicine's most common side effects include disturbance in speech, fatigue, dizziness, constipation, dry mouth, drowsiness, stuffy nose, upset stomach, weight gain and increased appetite. In addition to those common side effects the reader was cautioned to be on the lookout for high fever, stiff muscles, confusion, sweating, changes in pulse, heart rate or blood pressure, muscle pain, weakness and even death. Readers were also cautioned not to forget the risk of suicidal tendencies and loss of control of the face, tongue or other body parts. And last but not least caution was advised before operating machinery or driving after taking the medicine.

It is a shame that many people will spend money and suffer the harsh side effects of drugs to cure depression when they have the remedy right there in their own minds.

If a person could wipe out the negatives from their mind and only allow positive thoughts of happiness, success and motivation to come in a positive change in attitude followed by a favorable change in circumstances would result. The analogy of the farmer reaping the harvest of whatever seeds he planted in his fields applies to the mind. Whatever ideas are planted in the mind will produce like fruit in thought, actions and results.

Constantly thinking doom and gloom will cause depression. If you sit around and think of things like I am probably going to lose my job, I may go bankrupt, I'm getting sick, my 401k plan is going in the tank, I'm gaining weight and my children are going to use drugs you will be depressed. These are the seeds of negativity that will cause havoc in your mind and bring wretchedness to life whether rich or poor.

Each person is the doorkeeper of their mind and control what thoughts are allowed to enter. It is very easy to let negative thoughts come in. They are everywhere because negativity sells. We are bombarded with bad news from every direction, the news on TV, negative people and institutions to name a few.

With a little practice it becomes easy to lock out the negative thoughts and only allow positive thoughts into your mind. Doing this will help you live a better life and save money by not having to buy antidepressant drugs.

Wednesday, November 27, 2013

Are You at Risk of Postpartum Depression? How Fish Oil Could Banish Those Negative Feelings

Are you at risk of, or experiencing, postpartum depression? Would you like a more natural alternative to drug therapies? Chances are your diet is lacking in essential fatty acids and eating more fish or taking fish oil supplements could make all the difference.

First, let's clarify what we mean by postpartum depression, or postnatal depression. This is a form of clinical depression, usually lasting for several months. It's characterised by feelings of sadness, anxiety and irritableness, fatigue, insomnia, appetite changes, reduced libido and crying episodes. It shouldn't be confused with maternity blues or 'baby blues', which generally last only a few hours or days.

But whether you're experiencing postpartum depression or a dose of the baby blues, it seems that fish oil could be the key to alleviating both conditions.

It's not the oil itself but the omega 3 fatty acids in oily fish that can help to improve mood and behaviour.

It has been well known for some time that fatty acids are essential for the healthy formation of the brain's nerve cell membranes and membrane fluidity. Because nerve cell function depends on proper membrane functioning and membrane fluidity, any changes can have a negative effect on behavior, mood and mental function.

A 1998 report in the Journal of Affective Disorders found that patients with depression had significantly lower levels of omega 3s in their red blood cell membranes.

It seems that omega 3 makes it easier for serotonin - the chemical that carries messages from one brain cell to another - to pass through cell membranes. Increasing the fatty acid levels has a direct effect on increasing serotonin levels and the more serotonin, the better a person's mood and behaviour.

People with bipolar disorder can also benefit from increased omega 3s as their mood swings can be significantly smoothed out. Anyone taking antidepressants for postpartum depression should also consider boosting their intake, as studies show that the effectiveness of this medication can be improved.

To reinforce the connection between a good intake of omega 3s and reduced postpartum depression, people from cultures that consume a lot of these essential fatty acids have significantly lower rates of depression.

Fish or fish oil supplements?

In recent times, most of us have tried to reduce our consumption of fats in the interests of good heart health and our waistlines. But it seems that we may have gone a little too far.

Grass-fed beef and eggs are both good sources of omega 3 fatty acids but we have turned away from these saturated fat foods in favour of polyunsaturated plant fats, such as corn, soybean and sunflower oils.

Although these plant-based oils can help reduce bad saturated fats in our diet, they are low in omega 3s.

The best source of fatty acids is fish oil. This is because it contains the two main fatty acids, DHA and EPA. You can also get omega 3s from plants such as flaxseeds and walnuts but they don't contain both EPA and DHA. Instead, they contain ALA, another type of fatty acid, which your body can convert to EPA and DHA. Unfortunately, the conversion process isn't very efficient and you need about 11 grams of ALA just to get one gram of DHA.

So oily fish is the best source of omega 3s for postpartum depression.

But there is a downside to consuming more oily fish. Often, these fish are farmed or caught in waters that contain high levels of mercury and other heavy metals, as well as PCBs and dioxins. These substances can seriously damage your health over time and so many people turn to fish oil supplements instead.

A good quality supplement will be molecularly distilled to remove any trace of contaminants. It should also be fresh - check the manufacturer's certificate of analysis (COA) on their website to make sure they test their product's oxidation levels. An oxidised product will be full of free radicals, which damage cells and undo all the benefits of taking the oil.

So there's no need to put up with the symptoms of postpartum depression, or the baby blues, when help could be at hand in the form of simple fish oil supplements. If you would like more information about omega 3 and its many benefits, or about the supplements I use daily myself, please visit my website.

The Real Reasons Doctors Don't Check Antibody Levels in Hypothyroid Patients

Logic dictates that if the most common cause of hypothyroidism is from an autoimmune mechanism, then the first test ran on all newly diagnosed hypothyroid patients would be a thyroid antibody test. Well logic doesn't always reign supreme and in many cases Hashimoto's Autoimmune thyroid patients go undiagnosed and just given the standard thyroid replacement treatment. I am going to explore the most likely reasons this occurs.

The first and foremost reason most thyroid patients will never have their antibody levels checked is because the treatment protocol does not change based on the mechanism. Most doctors are going to give you synthetic thyroid replacement hormones, intermittently check your TSH, and call it a day. If you continue to suffer with the same symptoms as before they will be attributed to some other ailment, usually depression or anxiety, and be treated accordingly.

The second reason for the failure to order antibody tests, is a branch off of the first reason. Since the treatment is not going to be dictated based off the antibody results (although it should), then running the test becomes "medical waste" in the eyes of the insurance companies. The payment for a test that will not alter the course of treatment is in a way wasteful, but the real waste is in ignoring the underlying cause of the problem and leaving the patient to suffer. Many times patients are mocked and scorned for suggesting a test or treatment that is a bit outside of the tight little box Hashimoto's patients are placed in.

Having no alternative treatment plan for Autoimmune thyroid, and the resultant medical waste of a test ordered but that has no bearing on the patients treatment are the two main reasons many Hashimoto's patients go undiagnosed and ignored in the system.

Determining that hypothyroidism is from an immune mechanism, IS important, and should absolutely be managed in more comprehensive way, not only including some type of replacement hormone, but it should also include management of the immune systems destruction of the gland itself. A more comprehensive approach gives the patient a better chance to feel and function normally.

Clinical Depression: Not Just The Blues

Is Clinical Depression Just Sadness?

Sometimes people get the blues. There is usually the a feeling of misery, anergia, intolerance to sounds, thinking process that's extraordinarily slow, anxiety, closing other people out and desires to stay in your bed, but in spite of these she or he still continues with the normal schedule even if everyone notices the frustration of the person. During this time period we can hear her / him say "I'm depressed" however this would only continue for just a few days. Periods such as these would be the time when an individual can experience a down time which is a quite typical condition. This is just plainly having a unhealthy day but not depression.

Clinical depression can last for 2 weeks or more with conditions like sleeping more than 10 hours on a daily basis or under four hours, feelings of worthlessness or shame, irritability, sudden mood changes, weight reduction, changes in hunger and repeating thought processes of committing suicide or dying. These symptoms must be found day to day in two weeks which affects her or his social routines and interactions. People who are at risk for this condition are usually those that have low self-esteem, has concern with failing, unsuccessful romantic relationships, money worries, re-entry to organizations like school or work. Through these times anxiety levels will likely be high, without an outlet and appropriate support system the situation could be damaging. Constant monitoring and psychological guidance will be a wonderful help.

Other Ways to Treat Clinical Depression Symptoms

They say hormonal changes in people who have disorders in their endocrine system and folks that have lacking neurotransmitters like serotonin and norepinephrine are also in danger of clinical depression. Individuals who have increased Hypothyroid Stimulating Hormone is suffering from Hyperthyroidism. People who have this are usually irritable, sensitive to heat and noise and prone to depressive disorders unless given medications in order to control the activity of the hypothyroid thereby, depression can also be managed.

Serotonin which is a precursor of tryptophan is responsible for sleep, state of mind and appetite. Therefore most milk drinkers are generally jolly folks due to the fact tryptophan is present inside milk. Norepinephrine on the other hand is actually both a hormone as well as a neurotransmitter. It's usually known as the stress hormone. Once the body's in anxiety the brain produces Norephinephrine. Both Serotonin and Norepinephrine are employed to handle mood issues. People who lack these chemicals may take a hit from clinical depression. A very sensitive state of mind that could lead to a loss of a loved one.

Health Insurance - Treatment for Manic Depression

Lithium is a well known medication used by doctors to treat manic depression and mood disorder symptoms in hopes of lessening the severity of symptoms or even preventing them altogether. Patients who take lithium must take the prescribed dosage with regularity and not miss a dose for optimal performance and well being. The doctor should be contacted in the event that those taking Lithium have problems such as fainting, vomiting, extreme thirst or begin to show signs of hallucinations. Health insurance plans with prescription drug coverage should help in the purchase of this medication.

The most common side effects reported by patients taking Lithium are nausea, weakness and a sort of clumsiness, all in the mildly annoying range of severity. Even so, if a patient taking Lithium experiences changes or new side effects then it is a good idea to let the doctor know to ensure the well being of the patient. Different medications affect people in different ways and until it is known how the patient responds to Lithium, it is wise to tell the doctor of any new events. Patients with health insurance policies in places will likely be able to afford this medication if the doctor prescribes it to them.

Insurance companies are growing and changing day by day to better meet the needs of the consumers they serve. Prescription medications such as Lithium are typically affordable with the assistance of the health insurance policy that is in place to cover the patient and family. Health insurance plans will typically pay up to around 80 percent of prescription drug costs, leaving a small percentage for the consumer to pick up. This enables many people to afford prescription medications such as Lithium that they might not have been able to pay for otherwise.

Lithium is one of many medications used in the treatment of a variety of mood disorders and manic depression symptoms. The hope is that Lithium will lessen the severity of the symptoms and also prevent attacks or symptoms from happening in the first place. Health insurance companies have made great strides in recent years with their coverage of medications meant to treat mental health issues. As recently as ten years ago this was not a common practice, in fact most of all mental health claims would be flatly denied not too long ago. Now health insurance companies recognize the needs and are working to help improve the quality of life for patients taking such medications as Lithium.

If you need assistance in locating coverage that covers Lithium, please visit our website at and provide your contact information so we may respond to your request.

How Can I Beat Depression - 3 Positive Steps For Curing Depression - 5 Side-Effects From Medication

Thousands if not millions of people throughout the world suffer from bouts of depression at some stage in their life whether it be mild or severe. These sufferers are constantly asking the question "how can I beat depression". Unfortunately this is easier said than done particularly for the more severe sufferer's who will require professional help.

The key is to recognise the symptoms of depression for what they are and do something about them. If you are constantly irritable, feeling down, depressed or hopeless, preferring to be a loner, feeling sad and miserable most days then you are probably showing the first signs of depression.

Recognise these signs for what they are and seek professional help. Don't shrug them off as nothing because they can and will get worse if you don't do anything about them. Get yourself diagnosed, play it safe let the doctor tell you what he or she thinks is going on. They are the qualified experts and can definitely help you out with your depression once they do an assessment and have a better understanding of what may be happening to you.

You may or may not be aware but there are many types of depression and all require various types of treatments, including different medications that your doctor can prescribe. Fortunately most types of depressions that people suffer from can now be cured through therapy and medication especially when diagnosed early.

3 Positive Steps To Answering Your Question: "How Can I Beat Depression"

1.Behavior therapists can offer patients some great one on one sessions that are incredibly beneficial. This is just one treatment that has proven extremely helpful producing positive results. These sessions have been known to get patients slowly but surely back on the road to a full recovery within a very short time frame.

2.Get yourself to a reputable doctor to give you a diagnosis on which type of depression you may be suffering from. You need to be sure what you're actually dealing with because there are so many different types of medications available. Make sure that you get prescribed the medication most appropriate to the condition you are suffering from.

3. Anti-depressant medications are now widely available on the market today to help treat those suffering from depressive disorders. Your doctor may prescribe medications that may have various side affects, you will need to monitor these side affects very carefully and keep him informed. If they are having a negative effect let him know immediately.

If you do put the question to your doctor, how can I beat depression? no doubt depending on your needs, he or she may prescribe a variety of depression medications as a more effective means to helping cure your depression. There may be some trialing of different medications under strict observation before you get the right mix.

Your trialing and observations may lead to an increase or decrease in medication use depending on the doctors assessment. However, when it comes to taking these medications, patients are advised to adhere strictly to the doctors recommendations. Doctor's will also advise never to mix medications or change the dosages without consulting them first.

5 Most on side-effects from prescribed medications

1. Sleeplessness: This side-effect maybe experienced by the user usually within the first few weeks of taking medication. Lowering the dosage or changing the time taken may help reduce this side-effect. The introduction of new drugs into your system may definitely cause you to have sleepless nights but this should only be temporary.

2. Nausea, Dizziness & Headaches are quite common also with new drugs initially, monitor these and if they persist contact your doctor.

3. Dryness of the mouth and throat: Keep some fresh drinking water in a bottle with you at all times so you can have something to drink whenever your mouth feels dry. Chewing gum may also help.

4. Double vision: this again is only a temporary side-effect, as mentioned the body may take to adjust to new drugs but again if the problem persists consult your doctor.

5. Irregular bowel motions: try eating and taking in a lot of fiber to help aid your digestion together with regular exercise

Sedatives or anti-anxiety prescriptions should never be taken as a substitute for depression medications even though these drugs are often prescribed along with depression medications. They may help calm your nerves and that's it, they will not cure your depression and is the reason you will still need to take your depression medication.

5 Signs of Depression You Should Look Out For

Depression isn't just a bad feeling. It's also a problem with how a person functions.

Often I tell my patients that I don't think depression is the correct term to use - perhaps serotonin deficiency syndrome would be more accurate, or neurotransmitter imbalance syndrome. Since depression is frequently a chemical imbalance, it makes sense to call it by a chemical name. Using such a term also avoids the guilt and shame many people experience when diagnosed with a mental illness.

Apart from feeling unhappy and miserable, be on the alert for these 5 signs of depression:

1. Change in sleep pattern. Some people suffering from depression sleep more than usual. Others sleep too little. Insomnia can involve difficulty falling asleep, difficulty staying asleep, or both. One common pattern is awakening much earlier than you want to, say at 3 or 4 a.m., then being unable to return to sleep. Regardless of whether a depressed patient is getting too much sleep or too little, either way they don't feel rested and refreshed in the morning.

2. Change in appetite or weight. Both appetite and weight can either increase or decrease in association with depression. In general it seems heavier people tend to eat more when depressed, whereas thinner people tend to eat less. However, when depression gets bad enough, even overweight patients lose their appetite. Another sign of depression is weight loss without necessarily noticing that appetite has decreased. This is true of the elderly and children more so than people in between, but it can occur at any age. In general, whether eating too little or too much, depressed patients report little satisfaction from whatever they do eat.

3. Change in activity. Most patients suffering from clinical depression exhibit a change in activity or interest in activities. Typically this is a decrease. They lose interest in work, hobbies, friends, relationships. Occasionally a person will become more active, particularly someone suffering from bipolar depression. Also, just as some people get angry and irritable when drinking alcohol, an increase in physical aggressiveness may occur. On the whole, though, decreased activity is much more common.

4. Trouble with memory or thinking. This is especially common in elderly individuals who suffer from depression, and may be confused with other conditions such as Alzheimer's disease, hypothyroidism, B12 deficiency, or even stroke. Depression is common in the elderly, and should always be considered in someone who doesn't seem to be thinking as straight as they once were.

5. Vague physical symptoms. When doctors encounter symptoms they cannot explain or symptoms that don't resolve with normal therapies, the real problem may be depression. Because patients are not feeling well they may forget to mention other symptoms such as unhappiness. It helps to bring a close friend or relative along who can give a more objective view. If you're suffering from vague physical symptoms and your doctor doesn't consider depression, bring it up yourself. You might be doing yourself a big favor.

If you see yourself in this list of symptoms, make an appointment with your doctor. There are many safe and effective treatments to help you both feel and function like your normal self.

Copyright 2010 Cynthia J. Koelker, M.D.

Overcome Depression - Manage Increased Appetite Caused By Anti Depressant Medication

Depression is one of the major mental health problems in the world. Treatment, therapy and medication for it are at an all time high. Anti-depressants are now more widely used than ever. These medical drugs are usually prescribed by medical professionals to relieve the usual symptoms of depression such as prolonged feelings of helplessness, gloominess, apathy, and decreased energy. While effective at first, remember that these are usually not long-term solutions. Unpleasant and sometimes dangerous side effects could sometimes come along with prolonged use of anti-depressants. One should learn the risks that come along with taking these drugs.

One of the main reasons why people stop continuing their treatment is the nasty side-effects that come along with anti-depressants. Some side-effects last only for a short time, just a few weeks or so; while some effects may not go away. Anti-depressants have a whole slew of bad side-effects like nausea, fatigue, insomnia, decreased libido, erectile dysfunction, blurred vision, anxiety, and constipation. This article focuses on a hated side effect of anti-depressants: increased appetite.

Certain anti-depressant drugs like Buproprion (Wellbutrin) and SSRIs (Selective Serotonin Reuptake Inhibitors) are known to increase appetite. These chemicals will cause a lot of people taking these drugs to gain a whole lot of weight, which may further decrease the effectiveness of their treatment. To offset this side-effect, patients are advised to exercise at least an hour a day, and to eat healthy food. Cutting back on sugar and other sweet foods is also strongly advised.

There has been some speculative research that anti-depressants may not be as effective as they are advertised. SSRIs, the most prescribed anti-depressant drug, has recently come under fire for reportedly having very dangerous side-effects. They may decrease bone mass in older adults and have serious withdrawal symptoms.

In the end, one should be able to weigh the risks of these side-effects against the benefits of the cure and treatment of the disease that they are supposed to be treating. Side-effects are only one problem. One should not depend on drugs alone, but should also access other help and support such as counselling, therapy and alternative medicine such as hypnotherapy to overcome their depression.

If you or someone you know is experiencing symptoms of depression it is very important to access help and support immediately to start the recovery process. There is undoubtedly a lot of different kinds of treatments for depression which are effective from the more traditional to the alternative. Just remember that it is possible to start the journey to recovery so don't delay, get the help and support that is needed.

Tuesday, November 26, 2013

Five Important Facts About Depression: The Silent Killer

Ever felt down in the dumps for a prolonged period of time? Feeling sinking farther and farther into the murky blues, like weighed down by a tremendous anchor? Feeling like nothing in the world can keep you afloat? Or that you are the world class good-for-nothing bum and an absolute waste of space? Well then I reckon it's the time to read this article and analyze yourself, for you exhibit the classic symptoms of depression.

In layman's terms, depression is a deep sinking feeling commonly associated with sadness. People suffering from depression define it as sadness, hopelessness and dejection. The feeling of despondency refuses to fade away and often cannot be attributed to a triggering factor. Depression manifests itself in a wide range of symptoms which commonly includes sleep disturbances (commonly referred to as hypo-somnia or insomnia), appetite disturbances, low mood, hopelessness and lethargy; none of which can be discarded simply at will. These symptoms persist for the minimum period of two weeks at length. You might associate it with the normal 'healthy' depression that you experience as a result of a distressing experience but once this bone-chilling sadness begins to interfere recurrently with your normal routine or diversely influences your psycho-motor skills, well it's time to be serious and face the reality: you have depression.

The first fact you need to realize is that depression is a real illness, a full-blown disorder. Simply put, our brain contains chemicals that are responsible for our moods. Depression disorder is caused by their unprompted imbalance in the brain. Sometimes a person may suffer due to a severe loss but clinical depression is simply a spontaneous malfunctioning in the brain. Thus a person is helpless in respect to this disorder, so you should not conclude that you are somehow responsible for it.

Secondly depression does not only affect the brain but often displays itself physically. It creates and augments all sorts of body aches and pains. These include chronic joint pain, limb pain, back pain, chest pain and headaches. The person feels inexplicable fatigue and weakness and droopy self esteem. Because these symptoms crop up with many conditions, many people never get help, because very few people are able to identify that these are symptoms of depression.

Thirdly, depression deranges your ability to concentrate, analyze and think. Thus people find it hard to focus or make a decision. Their cognitive functions are severely disturbed and they might find it hard to learn or recall events or details.

Fourthly, depression causes a persistent irritability and peevishness and consequently, social impairment. The patient is easily inflamed by the slightest provocation from the family or friends, or can be very touchy about trifling matters. Thus he suddenly finds himself wishing to isolate himself from everybody or hiding his inner feelings from the others. However this self-imposed isolation is the most dangerous of all.

This self imposed isolation is dangerous because the patient often entertains self-destructive thoughts, which leads us to the last truth: suicide. This is the biggest damage depression can cause. The patient has recurrent ideas, thoughts or even daydreams about death, as his life seems to stretch hopeless before him regardless of the fact that he is reasonably well-settled. He thinks about suicide, including the suicide plan, the attempt and the life after. The fact remains that he does not conjure this up by himself; these thoughts are generated by themselves. Thus if the patient shows the slightest indication towards suicide, he should be taken to a hospital and treated by a professional at once, as well monitored vigilantly.

Depression may conceal itself tenfold and strike very subtly, thus one needs to be heedful. Hope this article helps you protect you and your loved ones from this devious killer.

Depression Definition and the Different Types

According to the World Health Organization (WHO), depression is the fourth leading cause of disability and is affecting about 121 million people from across the globe. It can affect persons of all races, ages, and genders.

Depression Definition

Depression refers to an array of abnormal variation in the mood of a person. It is a condition that involves the chemicals in the brain. Depression is more than just a feeling of being sad or blue. A person who is depressed usually shows feelings of guilt, loss of pleasure or interest, depressed mood, low self worth, loss of appetite, and low energy.

The Different Types of Depression

Here are the several types or forms of depressive disorder and their corresponding depression definition:

* Major depression disorder. Major depressive disorder is also called as major depression. This form of depression is characterized by a group of symptoms that intervene with an individual's study, sleep, work, activity, and relationship with others. This form of depression is disabling and usually affects the person's normal functioning.

* Dysthymic disorder. Dysthymic disorder, or otherwise known as dysthymia, is characterized by less severe symptoms that may not be disabling to a person but can prevent him or her from feeling well or functioning normally. This type of depression usually affects an individual for two years or more. People who are affected with this type of depression may also experience one or more episodes of major depression at some point of their lives.

* Psychotic depression. This is the type of depression that occurs together with a psychosis. A person with psychotic depression experiences delusions and hallucinations.

* Postpartum depression. Postpartum depression can be found in some women who just gave birth. This is common within a month after delivery, although not all women experience postpartum depression. Approximately 10-15% of women who just gave birth experience this type of depression.

* Seasonal affective disorder or SAD. From the term it self, this type of disorder only occurs in a certain season, usually during winter, when there is lesser sunlight. During summer and spring, the depression usually subsides. Usual treatment for this type of depression is light therapy. However, in some cases, psychotherapy and antidepressant medications are needed since not all people respond light therapy.

* Bipolar disorder. Bipolar disorder is previously termed as manic depression. This disorder is characterized by alternating periods of extremely elevated mood (mania) and depressed mood.

Knowing the types and the different depression definitions is not enough to stop depression. For you want to live a normal life again that is free from the harmful effects of depression, you should look for the right treatment which is 100% safe to use, fast acting, and of course, with permanent effects that can cure all these forms of depression listed above. Natural cures for depression are said to contain all these properties. Also, from the word natural, you don't have to worry about the side effects because you are sure that they are made from natural ingredients.