I was diagnosed with type 2 diabetes five years ago, and I've had to make considerable changes to my lifestyle to maintain my health since I was diagnosed. I started this blog to share my experience of coming to terms with having type 2 diabetes and what I've learned on my personal journey. I share details of the lifestyle changes I've made, including giving up smoking and eating more wholefoods, and my personal experience of using alternative treatments, such as acupuncture and herbal medicine. I also post about new treatments that are becoming available for type 2 diabetes. I hope you find my blog useful and informative.
If you have suffered from bouts of depression in the past, you might be concerned about the possibility of a relapse occurring in the future. Here are two steps you can take to reduce the chances of this happening:
Regular exercise has been shown to help people to manage the symptoms of mild to moderate depression. There are several reasons for this. Firstly, vigorous exercise releases chemicals called endorphins; these are hormones which are known to improve a person's mood.
Secondly, when done in a social setting (such as a hiking group or an aerobics class), exercise also provides people with social interaction, which can also help to improve both their mood and overall outlook.
Thirdly, exercise also serves as a distraction; so if, for instance, you find yourself ruminating on negative thoughts, going to a local yoga class for an hour or two could help to take the focus away from these unhelpful thinking patterns, before they begin to trigger a relapse.
Last but not least, establishing a consistent exercise routine can also give you a sense of purpose and achievement; you can set and accomplish goals (such as training for a half-marathon, for example). This, in turn, can boost your mood and your self-confidence, and thus lower your chances of developing another bout of depression.
Talk things out with a psychologist
Many people who suffer from depression mistakenly assume that they should not see a psychologist unless their mental health begins to rapidly deteriorate. In reality, seeing a psychologist when you're in relatively good spirits is an effective way to prevent relapses from occurring.
Psychologists are trained to recognise the earliest signs of depression; signs which you yourself may not be able to clearly identify. Going for therapy sessions on a regular basis could help your psychologist to detect and address the first indications of a relapse before your mood start to spiral downwards and a depressive episode becomes inevitable.
Furthermore, if you do notice that your depression seems to be returning, a psychologist can provide you with the advice and tools that you need to prevent the situation from escalating. If for example, you're struggling with a difficult situation at work or at home which is triggering your depression, they can teach you healthy ways to cope with your circumstances, so that they do not result in a full-blown relapse. They can also offer a safe space in which to express intense emotions you may not want (or be able) to express at the workplace or at home.Share