Exercise, bright light and smoke cessation are all DIY-ways on how to beat depression.

How to beat depression

How to beat depression

As this article has already established, depression is not something that can just go away by itself without effort. Doctors have, however, given several tips on how to beat depression naturally. That is, trying to do it on your own before spending time and money on a professional treatment program.

 

Things you can do

You may have been told these tips over and over and over, but that’s because it’s been proven to work. So before you seek professional help, try the following:

  • Physical exercise that includes high pulse and lots of sweat has been proven to work on mild depressions and have a moderate effect on symptoms.[1] And by the way, walking up and down the stairs in your house does not count. Even if you’re out breath from it.
  • Stop smoking. In a scientific study from 2014, researchers concluded: “Smoking cessation is associated with reduced depression, anxiety, and stress and improved positive mood and quality of life compared with continuing to smoke.”[2] It might be very difficult to stop smoking, but so is physical exercise. Right?
  • Change work routine. A lot of people call in sick because they feel depressed. Regardless of how your boss views this, it is in fact a very legitimate reason. Depression is a disease the same way that the flue is. And it might even be just as contagious. So, if you have little or no desire to go to work in the morning, change your work routine. An empirical study involving almost 6,000 patients found that changes at one’s workplace, be it assigned tasks, co-workers, timetables or something else, makes a lot people, who think they suffer from depression, less likely to call in sick.[3]
  • Other activities that have shown positive results when tested are exposure to bright light (think about it – we are more happy during the summer and more likely to feel depressed during the winter, right?), meditation, listening to calm music or even skipping a night’s sleep

So, try those simple steps first to see if it works. If it doesn’t I’ve written another article that deals with more serious depression treatments that involve medication and therapy.

 

References

[1] “Management of depression in primary and secondary care”. National Clinical Practice Guideline Number 23. National Institute for Health and Clinical Excellence. 2007. See also this article for further evidence

[2] https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC3923980/

[3] http://onlinelibrary.wiley.com/doi/10.1002/14651858.CD006237.pub3/abstract?systemMessage=Wiley+Online+Library+and+related+systems+will+have+3+hours+of+downtime+on+Saturday+12th+September+2015+from+10%3A00-13%3A00+BST+%2F+05%3A00-08%3A00+EDT+%2F+17%3A00-20%3A00+SGT+for+essential+maintenance.++Apologies+for+the+inconvenience.

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