Inasmuch as data shows that most people suffering from depression never kill themselves, when left untreated, depression can enhance chances of possible suicide. Depressed individuals can harbor suicidal thoughts whether or not they intend to turn these thoughts into action. When severely depressed, people lack sufficient energy to harm themselves, but when their depression lifts, chances of them attempting suicide are high because of the regained energy.
The good news is that depression and its related symptoms can respond to proper treatment and where early intervention is sought, the depressive illness can be nipped in the bud. Any concerns of suicidal risk should be taken seriously and a qualified professional should be notified to help evaluate the condition.
Statistics on Depression and Suicide
It is estimated that close to 15% of clinically depressed people commit suicide.
In 1997, suicide was recognized as the eighth leading cause of death in the U.S. Slightly over 30,500 people died through suicide in that year alone.
In 1996, the number of suicide attempts was estimated at 500,000.
Research also reveals that for every 8 to 25 attempted suicides, there is one completion. The ratio of attempted suicide is higher in youth and women while lower in men and the elderly.
In light of the above grave statistics, treatment should be prioritized in depressed individuals as a way to curb both attempted and successful suicides. The point at which you should seek treatment for depression is when you notice that your depression case is preventing you from living the life you desire.
Exploring Depression Treatment Options
Unlike other medical conditions, depression doesn’t affect two people in the exact same way. What this means is that treatment needs to be customized because there is no one-size-fits-all. The medical practitioner first of all examines you to learn as much as he possibly can about your depression case and whether your symptoms are rooted in an underlying medical condition. Where this is the case, the underlying condition is prioritized in treatment. The severity of your depression is also an important factor and the more severe the condition is, the more intensive the treatment ought to be.
Finding the right treatment may take quite some time with instances of trial and error. Treatment is most often than not a multipronged approach which doesn’t just rely on medication, but also other treatments such as exercise and therapy. Among the other non-medical treatments for depression include:
Social Support – This is not necessarily a treatment, but cultivating positive social connections can protect you from sliding into depression. Family members and friends are the first line of defense in this.
Good Nutrition – Eating well is critical not only to your physical, but also mental health. Having a balanced diet can boost your energy and minimize mood swings. Sugar crashes can drain and push you towards depression.
Stress Reduction – Excessive amounts of stress can exacerbate depression and increase your risk for future depression. To stop this, initiate changes in your life that help you to identify, manage, and reduce stress.
Therapy for Depression Treatment
Where the underlying cause for your depression symptoms is not medical, you need to find a mental health specialist for further examination. There are various types of therapy you can undergo depending on the areas being addressed. There is psychotherapy which is an effective treatment that gives you skill and insight on how to identify and prevent depression in future. There is also cognitive behavioral therapy, psychodynamic therapy, and interpersonal therapy. For the best results, medical practitioners combine one or two approaches in addressing depression conditions.
Remember it is possible to pull through depression and live a normal life again.