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Battling Depression - Part 1

September 29 2014

To quote a character from the Harry Potter Series, Remus Lupin, Dementors are"...among the foulest creatures to walk this earth. They infest the darkest, filthiest places, they glory in decay and despair, they drain peace, hope and happiness around them...Get too near a Dementor and every good feeling, every happy memory will be sucked out of you." If Remus Lupin were a physician, he could well have been talking about depression.

Although sadness is very much part of a normal life, with its ups and downs; being sad for a long time, regardless of the situations around, is what is known as depression. When a person is depressed, she is in a state of prolonged sadness. Depressions can be of different types, medically speaking, but they are a disorder of a mind and they have to be acknowledged and treated as would any physical injury or disorder, without any sense of shame.

Seek friendly relationships

Don't be lonely. Turn to your trusted friends and relatives. They might not be able to get you out of your depressed state of mind all by themselves. But the feeling, that you are not alone in your time of crisis and you will be helped and supported, gives you a major boost.

Get some exercise - Any physical activity releases "happy hormones" in your body. They invigorate the mind and make you feel good. No strenuous workouts are required. Just a brisk walk in the park daily can do wonders. Practice yoga. Pranayaams, or breathing exercises, work like miracles.

Recent reports from National Crime Records Bureau (NCRB), India suggest:
15 suicides are committed per hour
371 suicides committed per day Approximately 37% victims commit suicide by hanging Approximately 29% victims commit suicide by consuming poison

Challenge your brain - Set a daily routine. Don't let the days go by just like that. Learn something new, maybe a language or origami or even cooking. When you are learning new things, the brain releases powerful chemicals that can create wondrous self-confident feelings. Don't expect yourself to be perfect. Cut yourself some slack. Set small, achievable daily targets and then move on to bigger ones.

Eat right - Healthy eating is absolutely vital during depressions. Overeating and resorting to junk foods can compound the problem and can create new ones. Foods rich in the B vitamins, Vitamin D, antioxidants, magnesium and folic acid are known to be naturally antidepressant. Eat complex carbohydrates (whole wheat bread, oats, and baked potatoes) and absolutely avoid refined flours and cut down drastically on your sugar intake.

Facts Out of the Blue
Research shows depression can enhance analytical thinking and make one more focussed.

Get a good sleep - Understand that the brain is also an organ which requires professional, medical care when it is not functioning properly.

Get a good sleep - Understand that the brain is also an organ which requires professional, medical care when it is not functioning properly.

AASRA - a crisis intervention center based out of Mumbai provides help to those who are depressed.
The 24x7 Helpline: 91-22-27546669

Finally, the human will is, arguably, the strongest entity in Creation. The will to come out of depression is by far the best way to battle it. Rest assured, the will wins, if it is fuelled by determined efforts. If a lowly cell, through Evolution, can make it thus far into becoming what a human body is today, depression really doesn't stand a chance.

Read about more practical methods of overcoming depression in our next article.

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