Depression and other mental health challenges are never one size fits all. Everyone has different brain chemistry, different life challenges, and different experiences of depression. This means that people will often have very different treatment methods that work for them. Some treatment options may work great for you, but don’t help someone else. Others options might not fit into your lifestyle but may work great for someone else. When it comes to treating depression, there is no wrong way to make your brain feel better. It’s your brain, your rules.
Medication to Treat Depression
For some people, especially those with ongoing symptoms, taking medication can be helpful in treating their depression. Sadly, there is a lot of stigma surrounding antidepressants. There are misconceptions that antidepressants are a “crutch” or only cause “artificial happiness.” However, antidepressants are a lot like glasses. While glasses give you the ability to see, medication give you the ability to be happy by adjusting the balance of neurotransmitters in your brain. There is no shame in needing a little help if your brain isn’t producing enough serotonin.
Mindfulness and Positivity to Make Your Brain Happy
Practicing mindfulness, meditation, and positive thinking can really help some people who struggle with depression. This study found that meditation can reduce stress, promote positive thinking, and improve depression. Using mantras such as “I am strong and I will recover” and “I am in charge of how I feel and I choose to feel happy” can also reduce depression. Other ways to practice positivity include volunteering for mental health and being active in the community.
Talk Therapy for Depression
Therapy can be used as a treatment on its own or be combined with another treatment option. Having someone to talk to can be hugely beneficial to improve your mental health. Sadly, there is a lot of stigma surrounding therapy and counseling. There are common misconceptions that there is something wrong with seeking counseling when you are going through tough times. However, there is nothing wrong with needing help. Talking to a therapist can be very beneficial because it often helps to just get it out. A therapist can also provide you with an outside perspective and can be a resource for new coping mechanisms. Remember that everyone needs help sometimes; just as people go to the doctor when their body is sick, you could go talk to a therapist when your brain is sick.
Alternative Treatments for Depression
Some people are uncomfortable or are unable to take medication for their mental health. They may find that alternative treatments like essential oils, scent therapy, and diet changes help improve their depression. For some people, things like light therapy, acupuncture, and supplements do the trick to improve their mental health. Just remember that there is no wrong way to handle your depression. Do whatever makes your brain happy and improves your life!