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5 Ways to Beat Depression

posted Dec 10, 2009, 10:53 AM by David Wright   [ updated Jan 14, 2010, 10:39 AM ]

    According to the National Institute for Mental Health the number 1 cause of disability in the world is depression. Depression affects nearly 1 in 10 Americans and can greatly reduce your pleasure, motivation, and energy level. Fortunately, there’s a lot you can do to help boost your mood.

  1. Start Talking. Psychotherapy with a licensed, experience mental health professional can help. How do you find one? Ask a trusted friend or contact your health plan, employee assistance program (EAP) or health care provider. Approaches such as cognitive-behavioral therapy (a short term, goal oriented treatment) are well supported by research.
  2. Consider Medication. Antidepressant medication can bring relief from the blues within a few weeks. Your health care professional can help you choose the one that’s best for you.
  3. Get Moving. Studies show 30 minutes of vigorous exercise three or more times a week can lift your spirits. Swimming, biking, jogging, dancing, or may sports can all do the trick.
  4. Join the Crowd. If you push yourself to socialize and resume your usual activities, the sense of pleasure may gradually return.
  5. Think Positive. If you catch yourself having a lot of negative thoughts, “Talk BACK” to them by writing down balanced, realistic responses. Practice saying these to yourself instead.

    These changes could be just the ticket you need to feeling better soon.