Feeling down? Battling a bout of depression? You’re hardly alone. Gloom is spreading across our nation.
The holidays are over. We’re in month 10 of a global pandemic. And now we’re smack dab in the middle of the coldest, darkest time of year.
You’d almost have to question anyone who’s NOT down in the dumps right now.
But you DON’T have to suffer in silence anymore.
You can beat the blues right now and all year long. And you can do it without the often-ineffective brain-twisting meds too many doctors prescribe too quickly, too often, and for far too many patients.
The trick is in knowing the TRUE cause of your depression. And then matching it to the RIGHT solution.
Why you’re so darn down right now
You’ve probably seen some headlines recently about so-called “Blue Monday.” This year it falls on Jan.18, and the claim is that it’s the most depressing day of the year.
But here’s the truth. You can tune it right out. Because Blue Monday is a media creation more than anything else. You’re no more likely to be depressed on Jan. 18th than you are on Jan. 5th or 10th or Feb. 1st, for that matter.
But what IS true is that this time of year is often a tough one, for all those reasons I mentioned earlier and then some. And that, my friend, is the trick when it comes to depression. Finding the reason.
The best possible treatment will depend on nailing down the specific cause of your blues. And unfortunately, it’s something far too many doctors routinely miss (or ignore) when they dash off a prescription for a heavy-duty depression drug such as fluoxetine or Prozac.
IDENTIFY and RELIEVE your depression NATURALLY
Fortunately, there’s a way to do what your doc can’t (or maybe WON’T). And that’s pinpoint WHY you’re down, and then match it to the TRUE solution.
Your depression likely falls into one of three main categories. Which one is yours?
1. SEASONAL DEPRESSION:
This common form of midwinter blues is caused by not getting enough sunlight this time of year.
The best solution for this type of depression is a lightbox, which you can find for $25-$40. For most folks sitting under it while reading a book, doing a crossword puzzle, or scrolling Facebook for about half an hour a day does the trick. But depending on your case, you might need to spend a bit more time exposed to the light, so check with your doc for more personalized guidance.
2. PANDEMIC STRESS:
Many of us are battling an extra level of misery after 10 months of lockdowns and shutdowns due to the pandemic. Even folks who have never been prone to depression might find themselves battling it now.
If you’re feeling it yourself, try some calming therapies such as a soothing herbal tea like chamomile and depression battling herbal supplements such as rhodiola and ashwagandha. Or perhaps try a free guided meditation app on your phone. Don’t worry. There’s no weird incense burning or chanting required. An instructor will simply help you learn how to focus on calming breathing and thoughts.
But most importantly, as long as the weather allows, get outside each day. A walk will provide exercise, sunlight, fresh air, and ultimately a greater sense of well-being. It’s the best solution to help fight the cooped-up feeling of pandemic shutdowns and the depression that can go with it.
3. GENERAL DEPRESSION:
This wasn’t a normal holiday season by any measure. Many of us didn’t get to spend any time with loved ones.
The closest I came to my own parents was standing outside in subzero temperatures and waving at them as they watched from a window. So trust me, I get it.
If you were already suffering from some degree of depression, these empty holidays certainly didn’t help. But even if you were fine before, you might be feeling pretty down right now.
In many cases, there are natural therapies that can work as well as common antidepressant drugs but without the side effects. And they are often an affordable and effective first… and sometimes last… step.
Curcumin, for example, is about as effective as the fluoxetine I mentioned earlier. Other proven non-drug options include 5htp and SAMe.
The most important thing to know about depression is that while it’s certainly COMMON, especially now, it’s never NORMAL. In other words, don’t accept it.
If none of these tips work for you, speak to a naturopathic doctor who can run some tests to help figure out what’s really going on. Once he pinpoints exactly what’s behind your depression, he can then work with you to turn it around so you can finally feel like yourself again.