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  • Sam DiFranco

Lifestyle changes: An essential part of depression treatment At Star Point Counseling Center in Tamp

Lifestyle changes are simple but powerful tools in the treatment of depression. Sometimes they might be all you need. Even if you need other treatment as well, making the right lifestyle changes can help lift depression in Tampa FL, and Brandon FL, faster—and prevent it from coming back.

Lifestyle changes to treat depression

Exercise. Regular exercise can be as effective at treating depression in Tampa FL, and Brandon FL, as medication. Not only does exercise boost serotonin, endorphins, and other feel-good brain chemicals, it triggers the growth of new brain cells and connections, just like antidepressants do. Best of all, you don’t have to train for a marathon in order to reap the benefits. Even a half-hour daily walk can make a big difference. For maximum results, aim for 30 to 60 minutes of aerobic activity on most days.

Social support. Strong social networks reduce isolation, a key risk factor for depression in Tampa FL, and Brandon FL. Keep in regular contact with friends and family, or consider joining a class or group. Volunteering is a wonderful way to get social support and help others while also helping yourself.

Nutrition. Eating well is important for both your physical and mental health. Eating small, well-balanced meals throughout the day will help you keep your energy up and minimize mood swings. While you may be drawn to sugary foods for the quick boost they provide, complex carbohydrates are a better choice. They’ll get you going without the all-too-soon sugar crash.

Sleep. Sleep has a strong effect on mood. When you don’t get enough sleep, your depression in Tampa FL, and Brandon FL, symptoms will be worse. Sleep deprivation exacerbates irritability, moodiness, sadness, and fatigue. Make sure you’re getting enough sleep each night. Very few people do well on less than seven hours a night. Aim for somewhere between seven to nine hours each night.

Stress reduction. Make changes in your life to help manage and reduce stress. Too much stress exacerbates depression and puts you at risk for future depression. Take the aspects of your life that stress you out, such as work overload or unsupportive relationships, and find ways to minimize their impact.

Ruling out medical causes of depression

If you suspect that you may be depressed, and lifestyle changes haven’t worked, make an appointment to see your primary care doctor for a thorough checkup. If your depression is the result of medical causes, therapy at Star Point Counseling Center in Tampa FL, and Brandon FL, and antidepressants will do little to help. The depression won’t lift until the underlying health problem is identified and treated.

Your doctor will check for medical conditions that mimic depression, and also make sure you are not taking medications that can cause depression in Tampa FL, and Brandon FL, as a side effect. Many medical conditions and medications can cause symptoms of depression, including sadness, fatigue, and the loss of pleasure. Hypothyroidism, or underactive thyroid, is a particularly common mood buster, especially in women. Older adults, or anyone who takes many different medications each day, are at risk for drug interactions that cause symptoms of depression. The more medications you are taking, the greater the risk for drug interactions.

Starpointcounselingbrandon.com

Starpointcounselingtampa.com

Affordablecounselingbrandon.com

813-244-1251

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