Preventing Suicide through Treatment of Depression

Screenshot 2016-06-25 at 6.44.09 PMInasmuch 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.

Controlling and Managing Depression for a Fulfilling Life

In Crisis?

Depression is a mental disorder that makes people experience loss of interest or pleasure, low self-worth, low energy, poor concentration, and feelings of guilt. Oftentimes, people confuse depression with feelings of sadness and unhappiness which occur to everyone at one point or the other. People experiencing depression tend to have intense emotions of hopelessness, anxiety, negativity, and helplessness. These feelings stay with them for much longer times thus aggravating the situation.

Depression can affect anyone even the successful and famous people who have everything going on well for them. Some people suffer depression once and never again while to some it tends to recur.

 

Depressed Lone Woman

Signs and Symptoms of Depression

Depression shares a number of signs and symptoms with other conditions, however, below are some of those that are commonly associated with the mental disorder.

  • Loss of energy and tiredness
  • Persistent sadness
  • Loss of self-esteem and confidence
  • Poor concentration
  • Loss of meaning in things that are interesting and pleasurable
  • Feelings of anxiety
  • Avoiding people even family and close friends
  • Loss of appetite
  • Helplessness and hopelessness
  • Suicidal thoughts and self-harm

What Causes Depression

Depression may happen all of a sudden due to physical illnesses or childhood experiences as well as other issues such as unemployment, family problems, bereavement, and other life changing events. Chronic illnesses such as cardiac diseases, cancer, back pains, pituitary damage among others can also cause depression. At times, identifying the cause of depression may not be easy because at times the reason is not clear.

The Various Types of Depression

Below are some of the various forms of depression that commonly affect people and have been categorized by medics.

Mild Depression

This type of depression has a limited effect on your day to day life. You may experience difficulties in concentrating at work or even in motivating yourself to do some of the things which you normally enjoy.

Major Depression

This depression interferes with your daily life. It may affect your sleeping, eating, and other every day activities. Some people experience a single episode of major depression while others experience recurring episodes throughput their lifetime. This form of depression can lead to hospitalization.

Bipolar Disorder

 This is commonly characterized by mood swings which can be extreme. On one end, the person may feel indestructible and elated while on the other they may experience desperation and suicidal feelings. Bipolar disorder symptoms can be very severe to the extent that the affected people lose sense of their world and start doing things that are odd and illogical.

Other types of depression include postpartum depression which is also called “baby blues” and seasonal affective disorder which is commonly associated with the beginning of winter and may last until spring.

Getting Help with Depression

Counseling, psychotherapy work, and talking therapies such as cognitive behavioral therapy can help you with depression. Counseling gives you a chance with a specialist to talk out the everyday issues in a bid to help eliminate depressive factors. Cognitive therapy addresses your thought patterns and teaches you to identify and reverse negative thoughts. The general practitioner may also recommend antidepressants and other medication particularly in instances where your depression is mild.

Understanding and Addressing Anxiety & Panic Disorders

Anxiety and Stress and its Destructive Qualities

Anxiety and Stress and its Destructive Qualities

 

Feelings of anxiety are common and they affect every one of us at one time or the other. It is considered a normal emotion and a majority of people experience nervousness and anxiety at work, before taking tests or when making important decisions in their lives. However, you must be careful not to confuse nervousness with anxiety disorders because the latter can cause distress and interfere with your normal life functions. Anxiety disorder is a mental illness characterized by fear and worry, which can be overwhelming and at times disabling. Learning how to manage these feelings through treatment can enable you to live a fulfilling life.

Types of Anxiety Disorders

There are a number of anxiety disorders some of which include:

Panic Disorder – People suffering from this condition experience feelings of terror that tend to strike repeatedly and suddenly without a preamble. Other symptoms include sweating, palpitations, chest pains, and feelings of choking.

Social Anxiety Disorder – This is also referred to as social phobia and involves overwhelming instances of self-consciousness and worry about day to day situations. The worry is often centered around the fear of being judged by other people or behaving in a manner likely to cause embarrassment or ridicule.

Specific Phobias – This refers to intense fears of a particular situation or object such as fear of heights or flying. The level of fear is normally inappropriate to the situation and when it persists, can cause you to avoid every day situations.

Symptoms of Anxiety Disorders

Just as there are different types of anxiety disorders, so are the symptoms. That being said, there are general symptoms that can indicate the existence or risk of anxiety disorders. Some of these signs include:

Sleeping problems

Sweaty feet and hands

Shortness of breath

Palpitations

Dry mouth

Muscle tension

Dizziness

Nausea

Tingling or numbness in the hands and feet

The Causes of Anxiety Disorders

The main cause of anxiety disorders is largely unknown, but scientists are still doing research to determine the combination of factors that result into anxiety disorders. Up until now, we know that anxiety disorders are linked to environmental stress and changes in the brain. The mind contains circuits that regulate emotions including fear. Where these circuits are interfered with, anxiety may result.

For instance, severe or long lasting stress can change the manner in which nerve cells transmit information from one part of the brain to the other and this can cause anxiety. A few studies have managed to trace anxiety disorders along family lines which have brought into the open the possibility of genetic transmission and inheritance.

Diagnosis and Treatment of Anxiety Disorders

When you exhibit symptoms of anxiety disorders, the doctor may evaluate your situation by asking questions touching on your medical history as well as perform a physical examination. There are various tests other than lab tests that specialists resort to in a bid to diagnose anxiety disorders.

Psychiatrists and psychologists are better placed to evaluate your condition using assessment tools and interviews. The intensity of your condition and the duration of the symptoms are a pointer upon which the medical practitioner basis his or her diagnosis.

The treatment approach to be used for anxiety disorders depends on the type of disorder you are suffering from. The practitioner may recommend therapies such as psychotherapy, cognitive behavioral therapy, or even drugs. Psychotherapy is a type of counseling which helps in addressing the emotional response to mental conditions. The health professionals will take you through a number of strategies that will help you understand and deal with your disorder.

Though anxiety disorders cannot be prevented, there are things you can do to lessen or control the symptoms such as reduction in consumption of certain foods and drinks such as chocolate, energy drinks, coffee, cola, and tea. Ensure you seek counseling and support if you have any reason to believe your anxiety is overboard.

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