How Mindfulness Meditation Works Plus Natural Means of Fighting Depression Print Write e-mail
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Depression - Depression 2010
Written by Frank Mangano   
Sunday, 12 December 2010 16:52

An Introduction to Depressive Disorder

Depression has been a human emotional disorder since the beginning of recorded history. It is directly linked to a person’s ability to feel and react to external and internal stimulus. Clinical depression has also been portrayed in forms of art as far history can tell.

Today, depression is a highly managed disorder with various means available to counteract its onset and progression.

Symptoms of Depression

There are different theories that aim to explain the origin of depression. Medical experts will still argue regarding the symptoms that indicate a case of depressive disorder despite new developments in the field. But most of them will agree that depression results to an irritable or sad mood which exceeds the normal level of grief or sadness. The duration of the feeling of sadness and irritability is also longer than normal.

The first indications of a depressive disorder are the inception of negative thoughts and the demonstration of untoward behavior. Symptoms such as eating problems, sudden and excessive weight loss, sleeping disorders, low energy, decreased libido, body aches and crying spells are some of which most experts will agree upon as a strong indication of a depressive disorder. But the symptoms will tend to vary depending on the type of depression that a person has. A more serious level of depression will also demonstrate stronger and more alarming symptoms.

Traditional Approach to Depression

Depression is a serious health problem faced by different communities around the world. According to recent statistics, around 2 percent of preteens, 8 percent of teens and 10 percent of adults suffer from a certain type of depressive disorder.

The health risks brought by depression may be less apparent than it seems. Depressive disorder can co-exist with other mental problems. People who have been found to have high suicidal tendencies suffer from depression. Medical studies have also shown that depression can increase the risk of developing diabetes, chronic lung disease, hypertension, arthritis, and obesity. These facts make managing depression more important. Medical experts will usually advice individuals with serious depressive disorder to undergo psychiatric consultation. There are also other ways for people who want to fight and overcome depression the natural way.

Mindfulness Meditation against Depressive Disorder

A study conducted by a group of researchers from the Center for Addiction and Mental Health in Toronto, Canada showed that mindfulness meditation can produce comparative results in preventing depression relapse to traditional depression medications like antidepressants.

Cognitive therapy based on mindfulness meditation was applied by the researchers to a group of participants with depressive disorder. Their findings were published in the Archives of General Psychiatry. The study primarily compared the effects of mindfulness meditation over traditional pharmaceutical medication to different cases of depression.

The head of the Cognitive Behavior Therapy Clinic from the Clinical Research Department of the CAMH, Dr Zindel Segal, said that the growing popularity and occurrence of depressive disorder calls for the discovery of more choices for patients in order to fight and overcome their condition. He added that most patients stop taking their medications due to negative side-effects. Some of them also refuse to become dependent on pharmaceutical drugs in order to prevent a relapse.

The use of mindfulness-based cognitive therapy will not require the use of drugs and is purely natural. Mindfulness meditation treatment against depression is primarily intended to teach patients to manage their moods more effectively and sense the depression at an early stage. The treatment also consists of a lifestyle intervention plan in order to keep the patients as far away as possible from stimulants that may trigger a relapse and proper education on how they can maintain an environment conducive to a healthy emotional balance.

The people who were recruited for the study were asked to take their normal antidepressant medications until the symptoms receded. They were then randomly selected to undergo either the mindfulness meditation program, a placebo pill disguised as their common antidepressant medications or stay on their prescribed medications. The first group was asked to attend a series of 8 weekly group sessions where they practiced mindfulness meditation. And according to intermittent clinical examinations on each of the participant’s mental state, the effects of mindfulness meditation was no different to the results of taking antidepressant medications. Dr Zindel suggested that the study introduces a new approach to the treatment of depression by saying that sequential intervention, alternately using mindfulness meditation and antidepressant drugs, can keep patients on their treatment plan and reduce the risk of reoccurrence.

Benefits of Mindfulness Meditation

Mindfulness meditation is a form of meditation wherein the person is motivated to be more aware of what is happening now. The primary aim of mindfulness meditation is to make a person more aware of the present moment. This is practiced by sitting still in any peaceful environment and by feeling the sensations of the body and by being more conscious of each breath. The practice is expected to bring the person away from his projections of the future and prevent him from dwelling in the past. The practice is very simple and can be done any place where there is good ventilation and minimal noise.

Highlighted in the textbook-listed health benefits of mindfulness meditation is its effect in reducing depressive and anxiety disorder. By making the person more aware of the present moment and optimizing his control over his own emotions, he will become more capable of preventing depression relapse and sense the re-occurrence of the condition. Mindfulness meditation has also been found to be effective in avoiding relationship issues, and fighting sleeping problems and eating disorders.

Natural Ways to Prevent Depression

There are some things a person needs to maintain in order to avoid depressive disorder. The first two are to eat healthy and keep an active lifestyle. Good nutrition has a strong good influence over a person mood and energy levels. Exercising regularly significantly contributes to the maintenance of a healthy body. It is also an effective means of boosting one’s confidence level and an effective way to socialize.

Being too reticent with problems and personal worries can cause a negative effect to a person’s mental health. Talking to a trusted friend once in a while or whenever needed is a useful way to express yourself and to get some inputs from someone other than you.

Always keep a positive attitude and avoid dwelling on past troubles. This will only result to a feeling of being under the weather that may further develop into something worse and which will not help in solving the problem at all.

Sources
eurekalert.org
medicinenet.com
medicinenet.com
stress.about.com

  

 

Comments  

 
0 #1 Helen 2011-10-03 22:09
Icured my depression by taking B-100 vitamins PRAISING gOD AND FOCASING ON HIM AS i DO MY WORK yES A BRISK WALK HELPS. sTAY AWAY FROM BAD FOODS THAT MAKE YOUR BODY SICK. lIKE SWEET STUFF FRIED STUFF, REFINED FLOWERY STUFF CAKE BREAD, eAT GREEN SALADS, THEY MAKE YOU FEEL GOOD, SUNSHINE IS GOOD THINK ON GOOD THINGS. dO NOT DWELL ON PROBLEMS TELL THEM TO GO AWAY! tHAT IS THE BIGGEST HELP AND CALL A FRIEND TALK ABOUY GOOD PLEASENT THINGS
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