Dealing with depression: treatments to consider

The topic of mental health has become more and more important in today’s society, particularly as it is estimated that one in six adults now suffer with a mental health issue. Fortunately, over the years, knowledge about mental health issues has rapidly grown and the resources available to tackle them have been adapted to support those who are suffering.

Below is a list of treatments available in the UK when suffering from depression (please note, these are general treatments and not catered to a specific type or severity of depression).

Therapy

Most commonly known as Psychotherapy or Talking Therapy, therapy allows you to talk through your thoughts and emotions with a healthcare professional,who can help you to understand your feelings in a different way. Therapy allows you to open up and receive advice from someone who is unbiased, and also understands how your mind is working. If you want to know more about what therapy is and what kinds are available, you can check out this article all about it including helpful links for Brighton area.

Medication

Taking medication is generally treated for more moderate depression and can work wonders for some people. Medication is a great way to adjust the chemicals in your brain so you don't suffer with low moods and difficult thoughts. They help you to carry on with your normal routine and make sure your brain releases the right amount of chemicals for your body.

It is essential to talk through this decision with a healthcare professional - especially to hear about potential side-effects - and remember that you can always change tablets or dose if it’s not working for you. It’s also worth noting that most anti-depressants take a few weeks to kick in.

Healthy Living

A great way to combat depression without taking medication or therapy is to focus on your health. Exercise, healthy eating* and getting a good amount of sleep is mainly recommended for those with a milder form of depression. Keeping a routine helps you to focus on goals, self improvement and your overall physical health. It also encourages you to do new things, such as attend fitness classes or a cookery courses, and it’s also a great way to meet new people.

Making lifestyle changes isn’t always easy when you’re feeling low, which is why it is most effective for those suffering with a milder form of depression, but it is a good start on the path to recovery more generally. If you are suffering with a moderate/severe form of depression, don’t dismiss the effect that such changes can have for you - you can always combine treatments and include these lifestyle changes in your treatment plan.

*By healthy eating, we mean regular meals and moderation (ice cream is just as important as quinoa).

Support Groups

Depression can be very lonely and cause you to feel isolated. While the thought of a support group may bring an uncomfortable Alcoholics Anonymous set-up to mind, where everyone says their name and you all take turns in talking about your struggles. But after looking into it, there are so many positives.

With support groups, you meet with like-minded people willing to provide you with help and, more importantly, help from someone who understands. Support groups aren’t only for sitting and talking, but they also organise social activities to boost your mood and improve your wellbeing.

If you’re interested in finding a support group near you.. You can search on the Local Minds directory.

Alternative treatments

There are numerous alternative treatments out there that are said to provide relief if Western medicine is not quite cutting it for you. There is indeed evidence that some of these treatments have a positive effect in combating depression, however, not all have been proven to work. Whether they are viewed by the Western world as scientifically effective or not, there is no doubt that these alternative treatments aide relaxation and stress relief whilst improving your overall health and wellbeing.

Examples of these treatments include: acupuncture, guided imagery, chiropractic treatments, yoga, hypnosis, biofeedback, aromatherapy, relaxation, herbal remedies, massage, and many others. Again, these treatment can be most effective with treating a milder form of depression, however, they can always be combined with other treatments in your overall plan.

These are just five treatment options of several. What we would really like you to take away from this article is that, just because one treatment doesn't work for you doesn't mean that another resource won't be able to help you. There is no 'one size fits all' treatment
for depression - everyone is different, and therefore everyone requires different help.

The most important thing is to be as knowledgeable and aware of the treatment available, and tailor them to suit your needs.

Written by Imogen.