Five self-care tips to combat depression

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Five self-care tips to combat depression

Depression is a mental disorder experienced by a lot of people these days. Of course, the intensity may differ and the disorder is a debilitating one. At times it lasts for few months or years at a stretch. It is important to be able to recognise the symptoms, especially if they persist for more than two weeks.

Treatment may vary depending on every individual’s unique situation. But a few self-care practices can go a long way in mitigating the trauma that accompanies the disorder.

Exercising
Physical activity, whether moderate or intense, engages different parts of the brain. Exercising also helps to keep the mind alert and away from the negative thoughts or ideas that may cause distress. A brisk walk, a jog or cycling around the neighbourhood is enough to help you feel refreshed by releasing endorphins in the brain and other feel-good chemicals.

Try staying active
Those suffering from depression usually complain of low energy levels. Even if it feels like too much effort, push yourself to do activities that you enjoy doing. If you enjoy sketching or painting, pick a pencil or your paint brush and just get started. Simply reconnecting with these activities will help you feel lighter.

Get adequate sleep
Make sure you get enough sleep, at least 8 hours every night. If you have trouble sleeping, make sure to remove all distractions that may be present around you. This means, stay away from electronics an hour before bedtime so that your mind can relax and unwind easily. You can also choose to read or write in order to relax your mind after a long, tiring day. Meditation or breathing exercises are effective and will help you to sleep without much trouble.

Eat healthy
The food we eat has far-reaching effects on our health and general well-being. This also includes the mind, especially for those who are depressed. Excess consumption of processed foods, unbalanced meals leave you feeling sluggish and heavy. Healthy, balanced meals with ample fruits and veggies will certainly help you to boost your mood. Staying hydrated is equally important as it helps to regulate different body functions and energy levels in general.

Engage with others
Depression can make you want to withdraw from social interaction. But this only serves to isolate you and makes the situation worse than it already is. So you should call your friend and go for a walk, meet a couple of friends. You can also join a club or a sports group – anything that requires some dedication on your part to engage in shared activity.

Apart from practising self-care, taking help of a professional is essential, to help you to go through your journey to recovery. It is also important to get support from your close family and friends.

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