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602796 tn?1219873465

Could a more active lifestyle help cure depression?


People don't understand that there are so many contributing factors for depression.

*Boredom (This one is a popular reason)
*Finances
*Negative environment/people
*Relationship Issues
*Etc.

First, the key to battling depression is to find out what is causing the problem.

*If you're bored, then start finding something to occupy your time.
*If finances are giving you a struggle, then find a way to alleviate the stress!
*If there is a negative environment factors or people, then change it.
*If there are relationship issues, then do all you can to find a happy median.

You as a person are in charge of your own life!!  We all are!

And we all could choose to be happy and upbeat. or
Be in a shi**y mood,  which honestly gets nothing done.
Sitting around doing nothing, gets nothing accomplished.

So....
Becoming much more physically active, definently helps out!
Whether you're jogging, bicycling, yoga, hiking, etc.
Any physical activity helps the body and the mind!!

Your mind begins to work faster, increasing blood flow
which also increases those chemicals that are key to
making you happy.  Whether its dopamine or any other
happy juice.  Plus you get a body workout, aiding your
self esteem physically.  Sometimes people don't know
these things and must be taught how to fix their lives!!

Support from friends is always a plus, in all senses.

Life is a gift, and should be treated this way!!
14 Responses
Avatar universal
Only one problem with that that plan.

What about the 30% of Clinical depression sufferers, that are so overtaken by this condition that doing those things simply is not possible?

I agree, that in some cases, with some mild forms of mild to moderate depression, that working to get active helps. No question about that.

But, your forgetting about the small percentage of sufferers that have severe Refractory Non-situational depression. Many of these people are medication resistant.
Their symptoms are off the chart dibilitating. So much so that trying to get active just doesn't work.

I know from your stand point it's hard to imagine a type of severe depression that is so powerful and so out of control that it simply leaves you non-functional in every aspect.

I know you won't ever beleive it, but there are severe forms of depression that exist because the brain is not functioning or firing properly. There is actual neurological malfunction in the brain. You can't wish it away, you can't exersise it away, you can't talk therapy it away, and meds are of little help.

I was struck down with this condition at 23, I was an athlete at the time and was in top psysical condition. My life was calm and not turbulent, my childhood was very normal and non-tramatic. I was outgoing (life of the party) had tons of friends. With this kind of depression all that matters not.

A good portion of the people on this forum can not find relief from their condition thru "Natural" forms of therapy. Trust me I know a ton that have tried and failed, including myself.

I still do some pretty serious cardio 4 times a week. Does it help? I agree that I feel a bit more relaxed after, but it changes nothing for the severe symptoms of my depression.

I know it's hard for you and others to understand a level of cronic depression so severe that very little effects it, but I tell you it is true in many people. Myself being one.

Everything you mentioned above has been tried by myself and thousands of other people with severe Uni-polar and Bi-polar depression and I can tell you with absolute scientific certainty that your plan usually only works or help those with less severe forms of clinical depression.
602796 tn?1219873465
Despite the many forms of clinically diagnosed depression...
Physical activity is always good for your body, if it cures
the depression then what a plus!  It'll at least help you become physically healthy.

Making a change is always something that helps!  

*Change up your daily routine
*Meet some new people
*Start a home project
*Travel to new places
*Check out some new restaurants
*Google some things to do in your city

Getting away from the negative!
And starting to LEARN WHAT HEALS YOU!

Starting to do the things that you've aways wanted to accomplish!!!

Try this, for one week straight.....

Take note of everytime you smile & laugh.
Then start to analyze what makes you happy?
Then continue to surround yourself with these things.

Whether its...

*Talking to someone you know
*Watching a comedy sitcom
*Reading novels
*Jogging at the park
*Helping others
*Etc.

People shouldn't forget how lucky they are!
Don't forget there are plenty of bedridden,
& coma patients that would gladly switch
places with a depressed person.
Just to start living life again.

You could either let depression control you?

Or

You could be strong enough...And take control to beat the depression!!

The choice is up to you....
Avatar universal
I have just read your other posts - You are a wannabe doctor or a complete and utter crackpot wind-up merchant.

You are the sort who tries to convince people who cannot get better that they can get better but you are not there pick up the pieces when their world comes tumbling down around their ears because your ridiculous suggestions are utter s***.

I shall rephrase what i said earlier to - GET LOST
Avatar universal
Well, it's like I always say..... If you haven't been there and experienced Severe Depression in it's worst manifestation, then you can never know or understand. I know that you think you know CDQ81, but trust me, you really don't understand.

I'm not saying that as a bad thing, It's normal for you not to understand. I know for sure if I was not suffering from this cronic condition, then I would not understand either.

It's kind of like trying to get a blind from birth person to understand color. It just can't be done.

Even my Psychiatrist admits to me the following: "I honestly have no real understanding of how it feels to suffer from cronic severe depression."

He is an expert at treating it, and he is very educated about mental health, but even he admits that he doesn't understand exactly how it feels.

Ok CDQ81, let me try to see if I can explain to you exactly what the most severe form of cronic depression feels like at it's worst. Here we go......

Close your eyes and imagine that you just found out that your spouce and children were killed in a car accident. Now also imagine on that same day that you also lost your house and were fired from you job. (Stay with me here) Now imagine in your head, just after finding out all that news, how absolutly devistated, upset, physically trembling, mind raging with utter loss and hoplessness and flooding with emotion and dispair your head and body would be at that very moment. (Stay with me now)

Now take all of that happining in one day and imagine what your head and body would feel like. THAT is exactly the way it feels to suffer from severe depression and you feel just like that for no reason what so ever. Can you imagine that much sadness and dispair and feeling it ALL THE TIME for no outwardly real reason at all?

Could you go to the Gym and work out after finding out that your spouse and child were just killed? Hell no you couldn't, even if you wanted to, the intense sadness and emotion would be way to heavy a burden to just go to the Gym and work out. Severe depression sufferers feel that same intensity of emotion all the time and for no reason.

Now knowing what I told you, can you understand why it might be hard for people with this disease to just "go to the Gym."

It is Hell, and obviously one in which you have not visited.

602796 tn?1219873465
You are entertaining aren't you totallywild.

You know people are here to just share their personal experiences.
We are all trying to help eachother out. And yet....

Its pretty sad when people can't share their experiences or opinion,
without criticism from others who just want to bring people down!

Perhaps that is why you continue to stay in that depressed mood,
because you just want to bring people down!

602796 tn?1219873465

I really do wish someone is able to help you out.

Because happiness is a great thing and you deserve
to at least try to experience that in life.

Otherwise you are truly missing out!!
602796 tn?1219873465

After reading the rest of the posts....

I pray that NOBODY would have to experience such a thing.
Avatar universal
I agree with your ideas to help with depression in people who are not totally incapacitated by the "so called" disease. Totallywild has no idea what he is talking about and I don't believe you are a wannabe  doctor. I think your suggestions are great for people who are depressed and ARE able to help themselves. I myself get depressed and get in those moods where nothing would seem to help. But it's a matter of pushing yourself and just getting out there and trying the things you mentioned. Excerise is a great mood booster and doing it on a regular basis helps greatly. I think your suggestions are great. I think a lot of people would benefit from them if they would stop the "woe is me" attitude that I read here on the posts. Don't let these wannabe doctors here bother you. And you're right. We are here to share our own experiences and hopefully without criticism.
Avatar universal
To: CDQ81

I am so glad I amused you.

Were you sharing a personal experience CDQ81?  Gee, I thought you were spouting about how depressed people can make themselves better.  As Hensley has tried to point out, there are different forms of depression but you are obviously too narrowminded to acknowledge that.  I agree that some forms of depression can be helped with your suggestions, but not severe depression.

You assume that I have never been happy and that I remain in a depressed state.  I haven't said I even am depressed!!!  I am not depressed, I am in fact quite happy right now and it had nothing to do with exercise - I got rid of a man who tried to ruin my life - bit of a preacher like you in fact!

To: Artistguy

I do know what I am talking about, the question is do you!!!!!

It is me that is sat here laughing now at you 2 guys because you are either completely and utterly naive and gullible enough to believe your own s**t or you really are trying to wind folk up.

Avatar universal
Your description of depression is that of being "clinically depressed" I have been clinically depressed twice in my life.  There is not a thing I or anyone else could have done to get me to a gym. I had suffered trauma and loss, not financial problems or boredom. It's a feeling that for me that was indescribable.  My daughter who suffered a head injury 6 years ago and was not expected to recover and did, is experiencing a clinical depression currently.  I saw and felt that feeling in her today of "nothingness" you can't move, you are at the lowest point feeling there is no way out.  She is the most physically active, creative person you will ever meet.  She has stopped everything.  Until she gets through this she won't be going to the gym or creating art that she normally does.  And thank you for sharing your opinions here. I was looking for something this evening that would help me deal with this.  It was hard seeing my beautiful daughter who survived a horrible accident, they didn't expect her to walk, talk or function in life.  She looks completely normal.  All you would notice is she has short term memory issues.  But they also said she would suffer with depression.  Well they were right, she is suffering.   She is not bored, this is a person who doesn't know the meaning of being bored between her work, her art, riding bikes, her friends, her dance team and she surrounds herself with the people she loves to be with.  She is debt free, always has been.  At the moment she has NO choice trust me. So thank you again.   I respect everyones comments however narrow they might be and the fact that they made me feel worse about my daughter and made me decide not to tell her about this website. I don't want her to feel worse about how she is feeling.
Avatar universal
Well, someone is trying to solve the problem and they apparently know nothing about it.

Surprisingly some of the things he says are valid, bit like shooting a load of buckshot at a dart board really. Some of it's gotta score, right.

Of course exercise is a valid form of self healing, I think this is common knowledge amongst all, sufferers and non sufferers.

What the non sufferers don't get is that deep depression defies physical exercise. It takes hours to just think about getting out of bed some days, let alone EXERCISE.

Yet it is a vald form of help. So you'd think someone full of ideas might ask the question "If this is well known, why don't people do it?" before they try shoving that down our throats. Apparently not.

I do love the issue of lack of income/finance. Easy!! Just find a source of income. Yay!! Problem solved. Mind you getting out of the house is impossible but let's do it!! Maybe become a spammer might do the trick.

If you're bored, find something to do. SIlly person. We're not bored, we have something to do, think about negative stuff all day and night, it really fills up your day mate, give it a try. Or suicide, that does fill your life with excitement I can tell you.

Relationship problems? Fix them. Yay, another problem solved.

What a load of output from the rear end of male cattle my friend.

Just one question for you though. You've told us how to fix things. Go hiking, ride a bicycle etc, find more money, improve relationships, all too easy.

But you haven't told us how to fix the Etc. at the bottom of your list. Could I ask how to fix that please?

You see that Etc includes little things such as childhood sexual and physical abuse over an extended period, death of loved ones and chronic pain. They are some of the Etc's you have made no comment on.

Your advice dear guru?
Avatar universal
What an angry & disheartening procession of posts! In places, rude, sarcastic &, arguably, abusive. Is this what peer support means - everyone is offended by the opinions of everybody else?
As I undestand it, everybody's subjective experience of depression varies & 'depression' is a word coined to describe a cluster of emotions described & behaviours shown, commonly, by people experiencing despair. Refractory / endogenous, unipolar / bipolar, chronic / acute, etcetera, are components of theories used to try to make sense of these presentations. However, as far as I'm aware, no single physiological or psychological process has been identified to explain satisfactorily why some of us 'become depressed'.
Clearly, different strategies help different people & that's okay. It's helpful to share these things, but they won't be a panacea - that doesn't exist. Nevertheless, it can help to try things that have been useful to thers.
People using this site are often very vulnerable. Maybe we should stop & think before releasing a torrent of vitriol.
P.S. No, I'm certainly not a 'wannabe doctor'.
Avatar universal
Perhaps it may help you in understanding why a few people here felt that your advice, while no doubt well meant, was a bit off the mark, if I give you some insight into what happened with me when depression hit.

For roughly 12 years I've had chronic thoracic (upper back) and neck and shoulder pain, which started up straight after surgery on my stomach. To this day noone knows what happened to trigger it, least of all me as I was unconscious at the time :-)

Anyway, for the first several years I came to an approximate understanding of how to pace my work at the office and how to use some pain suppression medication to get through a working week. Nothing's perfect in life but it meant I had some social life and in fact was reasonably happy. My workplace knew the score about my chronic pain and medication before I joined them, and they were quite happy with my performance for several years.

Then I started work offsite, on a client project in what was for me an extremely stressful work environment, one in which I had little control but significant responsibility. Due to the fact that I was working offsite under unreasonable conditions - short staffed, lots of third party politics, shoot the messenger behaviour, large staff turnover, too many roles causing interference with each other, and the client's refusal to honour the understanding relating to my chronic pain - I eventually burnt out in 2006, just before successful completion of the project.

After some rec leave and sick leave under doctor's orders, I moved back to my usual office.

By the end of 2006 I had to stop work completely because I simply couldn't remember anything technical, couldn't string two sentences together in a report, and was completely drained. Some days it could take an hour or so to get from bed to standing, then I would get stuck part way through the shower and have to sit down. If I made it to getting dressed I dared not sit down to eat breakfast because I could get stuck in the chair. Now the interesting thing is that I had no sad or gloomy feelings, no little voice saying how hopeless I am, or any of the other stuff that goes with what is often considered to be depression. I was simply blank and having trouble with whatever part of the process connects a simple decision - eg, get out of chair - to the actual physical initiation of motion. This is called psychomotor retardation, and let me tell you that it has nothing to do with lack of will in the metaphysical sense. It is a distinctly neurological failure. Stress had also left me with a feeling of being overwhelmed if too much motion - walking in a crowded place for instance - happened around me.

Before dismissing motor retardation as "all in the mind", remember that Parkinson's disease sufferers often get "frozen in position" until some movement in their field of vision, or help from a carer, snaps them out of it. Noone seriously thinks it is just a lack of willpower in the case of a Parkinson's sufferer.

The bottom line is that what is referred to as depression is in fact a vast array of symptoms of abnormal brain functioning, only some of which might feel like a dark, sad mood. Depression is a poor descriptor for this condition because in those who've been lucky enough not to have it or to at most have had "only" a mild version (and that is bad enough, don't get me wrong), it sounds like depression is all about sadness, when in fact it can be a whole lot more complex than that.

I do agree that if it is possible to do some exercise, especially with a friend or sympathetic family member, it is on balance worth trying. However, for someone in the moderate to severe cases the first step is usually to use medication to get them out of psychomotor retardation - or in some cases, the exact opposite symptom. Once a person can move freely, and only then, is it even feasible to consider whether they can engage in some simple regular activities. Unfortunately it is also the time when temporarily the risk of suicide can go right up; possibly this is because movement is now possible, maybe something else causes the increase in risk.

In my case it took a couple of goes to get onto a medication that was effective, and even then some trials of different dosage was required. The medication interfered with my pain medication, pretty much blocking it completely. So, in going from clinical depression, (which is often called melancholic depression; see the BlackDog Institute web site via google, for instance), to an improvement, I suddenly found myself under severe pain. Of course that then compounded the difficulties of the recovery process.

I still don't work but have improved quite substantially. The memory problems and concentration have taken nearly three years to improve to the point that I can enjoy a novel. Every now and then I get flashes of creativity, something that was absent for an awful long time. There is still a long way to go though, so it is one day at a time and don't dwell on yesterday if it wasn't up to scratch.

Hope that helps put a bit more context to it. Plenty of other people get it much worse than this, and believe me, I feel for them.

Regards,

OtisDaMan

667078 tn?1316000935
I recently realized my depression has 5 parts that is why it is so hard to treat. This is just my experience.

1. A chemical imbalance from childhood

2. Dissociative personalities from years of abuse

3. Female hormonal problems

4. Brain damage from MS Lesions

5. Situational depression from chronic disease Bipolar, Asthma, Migraine (constantly). double vision, herniated disks,and MS. Disability, pain and mounting medical bills. I do not qualify for any government assistance.

What can I do about it

1. Medications, eating right, and exercise  as I can for the chemical imbalance.

2. Counseling for the personality disorder. Trying really hard to get better.

3. Track cycle for hormones.

4. Recognize this as real.

5. Journal, make myself get out with friends, accomplish small goals everyday so I feel useful since I no longer work.

I also have a list of things to do when  I get depressed.

My depression does not want to be helped. My depression does not want me to take medication. My depression does not want me to go out or call anyone. It wants me to spiral downward until I am looking into the abyss. Sometimes I need others to pull me back.

I have attempted suicide. I have been committed many times, but many years ago. I do not want to do it again. I do not ever want someone else calling the shots.

Everyone with depression is different. This is just my coping.

Alex


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