Worried about the future? Let's Talk about preventing depression during your teens and twenties.

Let's Talk about staying positive and preventing depression as you get older. 

Depression is a common mental disorder that affects people of all ages, from all walks of life, in all countries.

Anatomy of Depression:

Stress when unmanaged causes imbalance at the mental, physical or emotional level. Some amount of Stress is needed for us to function and remain motivated to act and hence Stress is not the cause of our ills. Rather the cause is our inability to cope with a changing condition and managing the Stress. 

Sustained stress leads to elevated hormones such as Cortisol (the stress hormone) and reduced Serotonin and other neurotransmitters in the brain, such as Dopamine. Low level of both Serotonin and Dopamine are linked to Depression. When these chemical systems are working normally, they regulated biological processes like sleep, appetite, energy and sex drive and permit expression of normal moods and emotions. When the stress response fails to shut off and reset after a difficult situation has passed, the level of these chemicals remains in a state of imbalance in our body. Such imbalance can lead to depression in susceptible people causing diminished ability to think or concentrate on everyday tasks. 

Symptoms and Effects of Depression

The influence of chronic stress and adverse life events is the cause for the development of depression. Patient’s with major depression- both first episodes and recurrent- exhibit reduction in function of the hippocampus and medial temporal lobe. The most prominent effect of this is deficits in explicit memory and cognitive capacity. 

Depression causes mental anguish and can impact on people’s ability to carry out even the simplest everyday tasks, with sometimes devastating consequences for relationships with family and friends. Untreated depression can prevent people from working and participating in family and community life. At worst, depression can lead to suicide.

What Can be done - Lets's Act:

Overcoming the stigma often associated with depression will lead to more people getting help.

Talking with people you trust can be the first step towards recovery from depression.

Depression can be effectively prevented and treated. In some cases, anti-depressant medication is required but in a majority of cases Depression can be prevented and treated with a combination of these:

  1. Get your Stress Measured: Yes Stress can be measured clinically and also it can be diagnosed how you react to Stress and if your capacity to come back from a stressful situation is impaired.
  2. Counselling: Empty the mental pot. Talk to a Counsellor and seek professional help. Your local healthcare worker or doctor is a good place to start.
  3. Yoga therapy       
    • Guided meditation and relaxation: Inside out, let’s change the mood.
    • Breath training: Let’s diffuse the depression.
    • Bodywork: Stretch your body and energize your mind.      
  4. Ayurveda Therapies: Depression needs a lift. Evidence has pointed out that Therapeutic Massages using herbs and oils from Ayurveda works on improving Serotonin and Dopamine levels in the body.      
  5. Nutrition: Mood foods to nourish the mind.

Remember that with the right help, you can get better. Avoid or restrict alcohol intake and refrain from using illicit drugs; they can worsen depression. Keep up with activities that you used to enjoy when you were well. Stay connected. Keep in contact with family and friends. Accept that you might have depression and adjust your expectations. You may not be able to accomplish as much as you do usually. 

Important: If you feel suicidal, contact someone for help immediately.