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How to Deal With the Depression: Basics and Beyond

How to Deal With the Depression

It is common to feel sad or blue when dealing with a specific stress, trauma, or a challenging situation, but depression is a much deeper issue. Even when symptoms are minor, this condition is serious. Unfortunately, many people have committed suicide or even homicide because of not getting the care needed. In this article we tried to provide all the required information so you can learn about the truths of mental depression and discover how to deal with the depression.


Of all mental health conditions that people face, depression is among those suffered the most, affecting the lives of millions of people all over the world. In fact, globally, more than 264 million people of all ages suffer from depression. (ref.: WHO Fact sheets on Depression). And, since the pandemic, percentage of people experiencing depression (and anxiety) symptoms had a manifold rise.

Depression affects not only the mind and behaviors, but also physical health, performance, and appearance. Depression of any type and level of intensity can wreak havoc on a person’s life with things like work, school, childcare, sleep, and even relationships.

However, it is true that this can be a very serious illness and that proper diagnosis and treatment are crucial, but it is important to know that not all forms of depression are debilitating or life-threatening.


Before we get to the question of how to deal with the depression, it would be beneficial to get a brief overview of this condition, its types as well as symptoms that most people experience. We also want to mention that in severe cases of depression, it is imperative that a person seeks medical attention.

In the following section we wanted to go back over some of the initial things a person should know when asking, “What is depression?”
 

What is Depression

The official definition of depression (According to MediLexicon’s Medical Dictionary) is as follows:
A mental state or chronic mental disorder characterized by feelings of sadness, loneliness, despair, low self-esteem, and self-reproach.
As a result of depression, a long list of symptoms develop, which range from minor to severe. People living with this condition generally share most symptoms although every person is unique and there are some noted differences between how depression affects men versus women.

Examples of key symptoms associated with depression include loss of appetite, disrupted sleep, poor concentration, irritability, a feeling of despair and hopelessness, isolation, and even thoughts of suicide.

  Read more: Depression: Definition, Causes, Signs, Relief and Self Help, Treatment: Fight Depression 

Depression Can Affect Anyone

While there are certain types of depression that develop within a specific age range, this illness knows no boundaries regarding who can experience symptoms. In addition to adults facing depression, this is something that changes the lives of teenagers and even very small children. Regardless of age, depression should always be taken serious, especially when small children are involved.

  Read more: Depression in Children and Teens: Symptoms, Causes & Treatment  

It is also important to understand that there are no boundaries as to the type of person who can become depressed. Because one of the primary causes for this illness is stress, a common misconception is that people who live in poverty, are unemployed, have a major illness, or are stressed by some other significant factor are at greater risk. In truth, depression can affect anyone, no matter status, income, health, or race.

Recognizing the problem

Daily living should never be an overwhelming experience. That does not mean a person will always have easy days, but when everyday things become too hard to handle, someone needs to notice.

A person with this mental condition, or perhaps a close friend or family member should see that treatment is needed when the individual has trouble working, going to school, sleeping, eating, laughing, loving, and simply living a normal, productive, and happy life. Seeing any of the symptoms mentioned below would be a red flag of alarm that something is wrong. 

When a person constantly feels that life is nothing more than a dark pit with no way out, has issues with anger, feels restless and unfulfilled, or sees no hope for the future, more than likely the problem is depression. The emptiness that goes along with depression is something that no person should experience on any level.

Getting help for depression is not something a person can just push aside. The reason is that this condition will continue to worsen over time and to the point of the illness becoming quite dangerous.

Rather than cave into the symptoms that go along with this mental disorder, people need to know that help is available. While frightening, the good news is that there are many great options when it comes to treatment for depression.

Additional Symptoms

Along with the things mentioned above, the following are some of the other symptoms a person would likely experience. Again, if one or more of these symptoms are noted, seeking the right treatment for depression becomes a priority.

· Helplessness – With this, a person would see no future, feeling as if nothing will make things better.

· No Interest – Another symptom would be someone no longer enjoying activities from the past. This could be participating in a sport or physical activity, having a particular hobby, intimacy with a loved one, getting together with family and friends, and so on.

· Little or No Energy – Someone that struggles with constant fatigue, moves around slowly, and is always feeling drained could easily be having an issue with depression.

· Weight Gain or Loss – Weight gain or loss of 5% or more of a person’s overall weight would be yet another sign of depression being a problem.

· Self-Loathing – It is common for a sufferer of depression to be overly critical of self, always feeling at fault or guilty when things go wrong.

· Trouble Concentration & Decision-making – It is also a well-known fact that depression can rob a person’s mind. This is most commonly seen as trouble concentrating, finding it difficult to make even simple decisions, or struggling with memory.

· Reckless Behavior – One of the more interesting symptoms that would warrant treatment for depression is erratic or reckless behavior. The most common include drinking and/or illicit drug use, but this could also be in the form of gambling, promiscuity, driving dangerously, or participating in dangerous sports or activities.

Dangers of Suicide

Treatment for depression is important on all levels, but for serious cases, it becomes critical. Sadly, many people have taken their lives because of depression but what is important to understand is that usually, the final act was nothing more than a cry for help opposed to a will to die.

Even if a person were to mention suicidal thoughts numerous times but without doing anything dangerous, this kind of talk should be taken seriously. In other words, this is not the time to go with the “the boy who cried wolf” scenario. At this point, a friend or family member would need to step in to ensure the person gets the right treatment for depression for full recovery.

When depression reaches this level, specific warning signs would be expected such as those provided below:

· Mentioning suicide or doing harm to self

· Talking about feeling trapped or without hope

· Showing an unusual interest or preoccupation with death

· Having erratic or reckless behavior

· Getting in touch with loved ones to say a final goodbye

· Making sure affairs are in order such as a home found for a pet, bills paid off, notes left about instructions, who should receive possessions, and so on

· Transitioning quickly from a state of deep depression to signs of happiness and calmness

Types of Depression

There are actually several different types of depression each with unique symptoms and different treatments. Some of these produce only minor symptoms that are short-lived while other types are debilitating, sometimes to the point of complete shutdown. As part of learning how to deal with the depression it is important to become educated about the types.

Because depression of any type is a very serious illness, the more people can learn the easier it would be to recognize symptoms and seek medical attention. But keep in mind that even if a person has a better idea of the type of depression suffering from, a firm diagnosis should come only from a reputable professional that specializes in this mental health problem.

The first three types of depression are considered serious, which is why more aggressive treatment options are chosen in most instances:

Major Depressive Disorder (more commonly known as Clinical Depression or Major Depression)

A person with depression of this kind would experience little to no interest in normal activities, weight changes, interrupted sleep, chronic fatigue, a sense of hopelessness and worthlessness, trouble focusing, feeling of guilt, and even thoughts of death or suicide. In other words, this person would experience a serious impairment in daily functioning.

The affected person would have symptoms daily for a minimum of two weeks. For an accurate diagnosis to be made, four out of seven symptoms must be met.

Dysthymic Disorder

This is a common form of depression that typically lasts for years, sometimes a lifetime. Although symptoms are not as severe with chronic depression as with other types, this is still an illness to take serious.

Even with symptoms not being severe, issues of chronic fatigue, being extremely sensitive, going through periods of moodiness, eating too much, and sleeping for long periods can certainly cause significant disruption to an individual’s life.

Two of six symptoms would need to be present for a firm diagnosis.

Bipolar Disorder (also referred to as Manic Depression)

With this, there are extreme highs and lows that change quickly. For someone with bipolar, it is even common to see extreme happiness followed within minutes by devastating sadness.

As far as a diagnosis, three of seven symptoms would have to be present.

Additional Types

The following types of this mental health issue range from mild to moderate.
  • Agitated Depression
  • Anxiety Depression
  • Atypical Depression
  • Catatonic Depression
  • Chronic Depression
  • Double Depression
  • Endogenous Depression
  • Melancholic Depression
  • Postpartum Depression
  • Premenstrual Dysphoric Disorder
  • Psychotic Depression
  • Seasonal Affective Disorder
  • Situational Depression
Read in details: Different Types of Depression and Their Symptoms

Effects of Depression

For some people, the effects of depression would be temporary whereas for others, depression becomes a lifelong battle.

For certain types and levels of severity, depression is a catalyst for causing lives to fall apart. As an example, a person with this illness would have a difficult time maintaining normal family and intimate relationships, keeping a job, socializing with friends, keeping up on personal hygiene, and following through with daily responsibilities.

Dealing with depression as a standalone illness is hard enough but it becomes an even greater challenge considering it magnifies the effects of other illnesses such as diabetes, cancer, asthma, arthritis, heart disease, and more.

Depression is not only debilitating to the person suffering from its effects but also a mental illness that has extensive financial consequences.

According to experts, 1 out of every 10 adults living in the United States alone is inflicted with this condition. This means that close to 10% of the adult population experiences depression in one form or another. However, depression also impacts the lives of children and teenagers, raising the numbers.

Follow are examples of how depression impacts people in unique ways:

· Men – With men, the problem is that to most, feeling depressed equals being weak. For this reason, hearing words of self-loathing is much more common than with women also struggling with depression. The most common effects include sleep problems, irritability, chronic fatigue, no interest in work, school, or favorite past times, anger, violence, aggression, substance abuse, and erratic behavior. Sadly, men are at the greatest risk of suicide so getting treatment for depression is imperative.

· Women – According to experts, women actually suffer from depression twice as much as men do although depression in men leads to suicide more. Depression in women is a little different in that it is often triggered by hormonal changes that go along with PMS, postpartum depression, and menopause. In this case, excessive sleep, guilt, and weight gain are commonly seen.

  Read more: Depression In Men and Depression In Women

· Teenagers – The biggest problem with depression in teenagers is that without having life experiences as adult men and women, they are often left without knowing how to deal with the different symptoms being experienced. Depression coupled with the inability to manage it leads to anger, hostility, and sometimes, violence. In addition to this, drug abuse, drinking, and self-loathing would be expected.

    While difficult for parents, it is important for them to understand that with the right treatment for depression, teenagers can get back on track. However, if depression is not quickly and properly treated, teenagers are at risk for both suicide and homicidal violence.

  Read more: Depression in Children and Teens: Symptoms, Causes & Treatment

· Aging Population – As a person begins to age, new life challenges are presented. For some, family is there to offer incredible support while for others, questions are raised about the future, losing the ability to drive, feed oneself, get dressed, and perform daily activities. Then for some, fear becomes all-consuming at the thought of being put into a nursing home.

    In this case, not only would a viable treatment for depression be needed but also family counseling regarding the best way to move forward in making good decisions on behalf of the aging individual.

This particular mental disorder is not one that can be allowed to play out, meaning intervention is critical. With so many innovative solutions, now more than ever, depression can be effectively treated. Even if a person having a problem with depression swears “everything is fine”, if a friend or family member sees any of the known symptoms, action needs to be taken in the form of the right treatment for depression.

What Causes Depression

There are definite triggers for every type of depression. For instance, stress, genetics, environmental factors, and more have all been linked to the onset of depression in one form or another. However, many people are unaware that there are instances in which a person develops depression with no attached cause.

This is explained by saying that every person responds in a unique way to life’s challenges and when faced with something new, there is no way to predict how it will impact an individual’s life. For some, stressors can be dealt with easily while for others, they wreak havoc. Because of this, someone can start to experience the symptoms of depression but for no reason at all.

The list of reasons a person might experience symptoms of depression is quite lengthy although there are certain triggers responsible for most cases. Some of the primary reasons for this type of mental health problem starting include the death of a loved one, divorce, accident or trauma, serious illness, and work or school overload. Although some of these things cannot be prevented, an individual could make different choices to prevent or alleviate symptoms.

In addition to these triggers, someone with a family history of depression or any type of mental health problem would be at greater risk for developing the same illness. This is why when a person meets with a doctor in getting help to identify the cause of symptoms, information on family history is always gathered. In this case, there is not much a person could do to prevent the onset of depression but being aware that depression is a potential problem would certainly help in being treated quickly when symptoms appear.

Changes in hormone states like menopause, childbirth, thyroid problems, or other disorders could also cause depression.

There are also certain medications that can produce symptoms of depression. In fact, when looking at listed side effects for many drugs it is clear that symptoms of this mental health problem exist. This would be important information for anyone, but especially for someone with a personal or family history of this condition.

Remember, there are many variations of drugs and even natural remedies for health problems that could be considered opposed to taking medication with unpleasant side effects. (Read here for Natural Remedies for Depression

How is Depression Diagnosed

As mentioned, once the symptoms of depression are recognized by the individual, a friend, or family member, it would be imperative to see a medical or mental health professional. In sitting down during a time of consultation, family history would be taken but along with this, the doctor would evaluate the person’s physical and cognitive behavior.

In many cases, depression would be diagnosed based on information learned and actions analyzed, but there are times when medical tests would be ordered for a firm diagnosis.

Based on everything, the type of depression and level of severity would be determined. If someone is dealing with a type of depression that can be effectively treated using conventional medicine or therapies and the condition is not severe, a treatment plan would be devised. As long as the individual follows the doctor’s orders, symptoms would begin to decrease.

On the other hand, if the type of depression and severity are extreme, it might be necessary for the individual to be admitted to the hospital until the right treatment could be devised and given time to take hold.

Remember, while suicide is not an “out” considered by everyone with depression, it is an option that approximately 15% of people affected with this condition choose. This is why it is always recommended that even mild to moderate symptoms be checked by a trained professional. That way, a potentially dangerous situation could be avoided.

How is Depression Treated

Most types of depression would respond favorably to some of the same treatments, but because each is so unique, an individual would need to be treated accordingly. To determine the right treatment, a medical doctor (psychiatrist) or mental health professional would need to spend time talking to the individual, learn about family history, and in certain cases, run tests.

Based on the findings, it would be possible for the exact type of mental depression to be identified at which time an appropriate treatment plan could be offered. For the more serious types, a person would likely be administered prescription medication in conjunction with therapy. In fact, for forms such as Bipolar and Major Depressive Disorder in which suicidal and/or homicidal thoughts are common, treatment often involves hospitalization.

On the other hand, when an individual lives with mild to moderate depression there are a number of less severe treatment options. For instance, people benefit well with self-help, through the use of supplements, and even positive lifestyle changes. However, regardless of which option is preferred, it would be essential to work closely with a mental health professional.

The type, number, and severity of symptoms associated with depression can change, which is why it is helpful to maintain a journal. If someone started to experience fewer or less intense symptoms, the treating doctor would have the chance to make adjustments to medication and/or therapy. If the number of symptoms increased or they worsened, medication dose could be increased, different medication tried, or more focused therapies tried.

Appropriate Support

It is true that having good support is one of the key elements to being successful when battling depression. However, there are good types of support and those that an individual should avoid. In most cases, support from family and friends would prove highly beneficial but when a person is deeply depressed, this type of support would likely be turned away.

In saying this, there are other options for support that would help. Again, only after seeing a medical professional could it be determined which type of support would work best based on the individual but also the type of depression involved.

Someone dealing with depression has several options for getting help. However, the three options that seem to be most beneficial include conventional medication, which usually consists of prescription medication, therapy in one form or another, and support from other people who currently cope with depression or those that have conquered it.

Some people find organized support groups to be most helpful while others prefer to start off by getting support through online forums, chat rooms, or discussion boards. Although difficult for the person with mental depression, support is critical in getting this illness under control and reducing or preventing future episodes.

Why is it important to treat depression

In looking at different health problems, some people simply let things “run the course” while others depend on one type of home remedy or another. Unfortunately, this mentality can be very dangerous when dealing with mental disorders such as depression. Even when mild, sitting back and doing nothing is not an option.

Although there are similarities between physical health and mental problems to a certain degree, figuring out how to deal with the depression is quite different. Because this is such a critical topic, we felt it important to talk about why is it important to treat depression.

To accomplish this, we wanted to offer some current statistics to show just how serious depression can be and the way in which it can impact a person’s life. Understanding the seriousness of this condition would make it easier to understand why treatment should always be part of long-term recovery.

Depression Stats

As stated, understanding the potential for severity and even danger makes it evident why treatment is so important for those with depression.

· Approximately 19 million people in the United States alone suffer from one type of depression or another, which accounts for almost 10% of the entire population. [Globally, more than 264 million people of all ages suffer from depression (ref. Fact sheets by WHO]

· Depression triples in US adults amid COVID-19 stressors (ref. CIDRAP News)

· Although adults are commonly treated with antidepressants, preschool age kids are among the group experiencing the fastest growth of these drugs

· Men and women go through bouts of depression although women experience this problem almost twice as often as men do

· Many people struggle in getting needed help, which is evident with 54% of people with depression believing this is a type of personal weakness, 41% being too embarrassed to go for treatment, and as high as 80% of people with this condition not getting treatment of any kind

· Sadly, 15% of people with depression ultimately take their own lives (commit suicide)

Depression Causes

Another reason why is it important to treat depression is that this disorder can be triggered by different things; so in some instances, a firm diagnosis is difficult. As an example, someone with mild depression might have gone through a recent divorce or lose a loved one while chronic depression would be caused from some childhood trauma in most cases.

Additionally, experts now believe that certain types of depression have a genetic link. This makes the effort to identify the best treatment a little challenging as well. The bottom line is that no matter the type, severity, or cause of depression, talking to a qualified doctor is always highly recommended.

Medical Intervention

One of the many difficulties associated with depression is that even conventional treatment is not always effective. As an example, as much as 45% of people living with this condition currently taking antidepressants do not get needed relief. Another problem is that further research conducted on many prescription medications that do work have revealed very serious health risks.

It has been recognized that whether natural remedies are used for mild cases or prescription medication for severe cases, to get symptoms under control a combination of treatments are the answer.

Long-term relief and the opportunity to live a normal life come from recovery therapy, strong family and friend relationships, self-help efforts, and medication (or natural remedies). Often, cognitive therapy is suggested to help this individual face demons head on and put them to rest forever.

Hope this makes things more clear on the facts why is it important to treat depression.

How to Deal With the Depression Effectively

Before a person can understand how to deal with the depression effectively, it is essential that this type of mental condition be not just understood but even respected. After all, a severe case of depression could virtually debilitate an individual.

Sadly, all too often someone with depression will try one remedy after another in anticipation of getting relief but not having a true understanding of this illness or the type of treatments needed, the attempt fails. In fact, there are times when choosing the wrong treatment for depression can intensify symptoms.

Because there has been so much focus placed on this particular mental disorder, options regarding how to deal with the depression effectively are greater today than any other time in history. Before we get into some of the highest recommended options, we want to offer two important pieces of advice and provide an overview of the most common symptoms of this disorder.

  For someone dealing with the depression it is important to know this is a mental condition shared by millions of people; so there is no reason to feel embarrassed, targeted, or hopeless.

  In addition, because severe levels of depression can lead to a person making irrational and even dangerous decisions, when someone feels as if the world is caving in and that there is no reason to even live, medical attention should be sought immediately.

Common Symptoms of Depression

As mentioned, before we talk about how to deal with the depression using methods that have been shown to work, we felt it was important to offer information about symptoms. That way, it would be easier for an individual to determine if perhaps a certain event or situation had led to a period of feeling blue or if depression were actually the problem. Being able to identify depression correctly is the first step in getting the appropriate help.

Keep in mind that while symptoms of depression are relatively the same, they can differ from one person to another. In addition, people with the same type of depression and the same symptoms might experience different levels of severity. However, the symptoms listed below would be helpful to determine if depression is in fact the problem.

Five Areas of Depression

From a medical standpoint, a person with depression would experience challenges in five areas which include physical, cognitive, emotional, behavioral, and motivational.

· Physical – Common symptoms include constipation, ingestion, headaches, general pain, and dizziness. In addition, depression often affects the body by disrupting sleep and appetite.

· Cognitive – Often, symptoms of depression are seen more in the cognitive area than any other. These include having a negative outlook on life, feeling inferior or inadequate, and seldom taking credit for achievements. In this case, a person would have the sense that nothing in life will ever improve and usually, this individual expects the worse possible outcome in every situation. Because the feeling of hopelessness and helplessness is so intense, suicidal thoughts are common.

· Emotional – For this, there is a general feeling of sadness, humiliation, emptiness, and misery. Most often, nothing provides pleasure and this individual seldom laughs or finds humor in anything. Sometimes, feelings of anxiety and even anger surface.

· Behavioral – Symptoms in this case are seen as someone becoming isolated, being non-productive, sleeping for long periods, having low energy, and often being reluctant to participate in anything.

· Motivational – With this, symptoms of depression include having little drive or taking no initiative, finding it hard to carry on conversations even with close friends and family members, possessing a low sex drive, and in general, becoming numb. Just as with cognitive symptoms of depression, a person with motivational issues could also become suicidal.

How to Treat Depression

Moving on, we wanted to offer information about how to treat depression in an effective and safe manner. The following are some of the most respected depression treatment methods, being used in today’s society based on the type of depression a person suffers from.

· Psychological

   · Often, long-term counseling with a qualified psychotherapist would help pull dark secrets from the person, allowing those issues to be worked through.

   · Depending on the exact situation and person, medication may be recommended to get the individual through the toughest period of therapy.

   · Behavioral therapy is also a highly effective method regarding how to treat depression when it relates to psychological issues. This involves identifying the problem and then teaching the person how to focus on positive things while being provided with appropriate reinforcement.

   · Cognitive Therapy – Of all treatments for psychological depression, this is by far the most effective. The psychotherapist would look at the person’s maladaptive attitudes along with automatic thought processes and logical thinking patterns. With this, the individual’s thinking can be changed.

· Interpersonal

   · When dealing with depression in this category for an individual, four specific interpersonal areas known to cause depression would be addressed by a psychotherapist. These include loss, role transition, role loss, and deficits.

   · If dealing with depression that involves a couple, experts agree how to treat depression effectively means to treat both parties. Often, depression is the result of couples growing apart or even contemplating divorce. Therefore, communication would be heavily focused on, as well as respect for others and effective problem-solving skills.

· Biological

   · Often, a person dealing with biological depression would need to be treated with medication although for more severe cases, treatment could be aggressive in the form of ECT or Electroconvulsive Therapy. Usually, antidepressant medication works extremely well, thanks to newer drugs that are more effective but also safer.

Natural Remedies for Depression

There are some people who need to be treated with conventional medicine and medical procedures, but today, many people are finding that natural remedies for depression provide the relief needed.

Thanks to better education regarding the benefits associated with alternative medicine opposed to potential dangers of prescription drugs made with harmful chemicals, the number of people making the transition is staggering.

Most people interested in trying natural remedies are surprised to find that many doctors actually support alternative treatment options.

Please note that anyone currently under the care of a medical doctor should never stop taking prescription medication or going through treatment to switch to natural/herbal remedies for depression without first getting consent. There are a number of dangers associated with this disorder and stopping medication/treatment is one.

  Read here → Natural Remedies for Depression

How to Overcome Depression

The truth is that depression is serious, even when the level of severity is minor. Depression can also be a lifelong problem that a person faces, or in the case of childbirth, merely a temporary problem. For years, this mental disorder was grossly misunderstood by the public. Without proper education, most people simply had no understanding of what depression was, what caused it, the level of seriousness, what should be done to regain control and how to overcome depression.

Although every person with this mental illness responds in a unique way, because so many different types of medications and medical treatments are now available, depression is something that can be conquered. Thanks to better public education, people now have a much better appreciation for depression as a whole to include the illness itself but also symptoms and treatments.

Although a tremendous amount of education has been provided to the public, we felt it important to provide even more information specific to the ways a person will be able to find out how to overcome depression. Keep in mind, though alternative medication and even home remedies are used, for the sake of this article, the information will come from the perspective of conventional medicine.

Another key factor surrounding depression that people must understand is that there are instances when symptoms are so severe, an individual with this illness would see suicide as the only way out. Obviously, if someone feels this way or even makes the slightest comment about suicide, the situation should be taken serious and the individual given immediate medical and mental care.

How to Overcome Depression with Medication

As part of the process of discussing how to overcome depression, we will begin with medication. Doctors would consider an array of factors to determine the exact type of medication that would be most effective but also safest. For instance, the type of depression, length of time a person has suffered from the condition, level of severity, whether other treatments tried had been unsuccessful, and even other involved mental or physical problems.

Of course, the type, dose, and delivery system of medication would be based on each patient. The overall goal of a reputable doctor is to bring neurotransmitters level back into balance. These neurotransmitters, known as serotonin, norepinephrine, and dopamine are treated primarily with Selective Serotonin Reuptake Inhibitors (SSRIs).

· Citalopram / Celexa

· Escitalopram / Lexapro

· Fluoxetine / Prozac

· Paroxetine / Paxil

· Sertraline / Zoloft

While Selective Serotonin Reuptake Inhibitors are usually the treatment of choice for depression, another possibility is with Serotonin and Norepinephrine Reuptake Inhibitors or SNRIs. To determine the appropriate medication, a doctor would conduct an examination, get information about patient and family history, and weigh a number of other factors. That way, the medication prescribed would be what would be most beneficial to each person suffering from depression rather than a cookie-cutter treatment.

Both SSRIs and SNRIs are used for rebalancing serotonin and norepinephrine but in the case of the third neurotransmitter called dopamine, doctors would choose the most appropriate antidepressant as treatment. Often, when the issue has to do with dopamine, along with antidepressants, SNRIs are commonly used. Those considered to be among the best include:

· Bupropion / Wellbutrin

· Duloxetine / Cymbalta

· Vanlafaxine / Effexor

Older type of medicines:

· Tricyclic Antidepressants – Of all prescription medicine to get over depression, this is one of the oldest. However, for bringing serotonin and norepinephrine chemicals in the brain back to a normal level, these antidepressants work well although they do produce several known side effects.

· Monoamine Oxidase Inhibitors – Often called MAOIs, these too are one of the older type of antidepressants used for this mental condition. For the person with poor response to other treatments, these drugs have been shown helpful. The downside is that several things can have a negative interaction, which is why most doctors try different antidepressants first.

How to Overcome Depression with Medical Treatments

Along with depression being treated with prescription medication, we wanted to offer insight into how to overcome depression using various types of medical treatments. Again, based on findings of the doctor, one or more treatments would be recommended on a patient-by-patient basis. As far as how to overcome depression, examples of popular treatments used today are provided below:

· Electroconvulsive Therapy – The acronym for this treatment is ECT and while one of the more aggressive treatments used, there are times in severe cases when it is the only method for helping a person overcome this horrific disease. Treatment involves an electrical current shocking the person whereby a seizure is triggered. The seizure then causes chemicals found natural in the brain to be released, thereby creating more efficient communication between the brain and nerves.

· Hormone Replacement Therapy – HRT as this treatment is also called is commonly used for women going through menopause but experts have discovered that when depression is related to Premenstrual Dysphoric Disorder, Premenstrual Syndrome, Postpartum Depression, or other female hormonal causes of depression, it works exceptionally well. The reason is that with all problems, levels of hormones start to decline, which in turn causes depression in some women. However, with Hormone Replacement Therapy, insufficient levels of hormones are restored, which in turn calms or eliminates symptoms of depression.

· Psychotherapy – Although this form of treatment is not beneficial for everyone with depression, especially in more severe cases; it can be beneficial to many individuals. Sitting down with a trained and licensed psychotherapist, the individual would have the opportunity to talk about triggers of the depression and then along with the expert, discuss the situations in great detail. By working through problems, it is possible for people to find out how to overcome depression.

Therapy for Depression

One of the best methods for treating depression is with professional therapy. The exact type of therapy would depend on a number of factors to include the form of depression, how severe this mental illness is, and the individual. However, with so many options and because this has proven to be so effective, depression therapy is usually one of the first things a medical or mental health professional recommends.

Types of Depression Therapy

Just as the decision for getting therapy is critical, the type of therapy, as well as the professional therapist conducting sessions needs to be taken seriously. After all, not all therapies are created equal. However, by choosing the right therapy and therapist increases the chance of getting the caliber of help needed not only to get symptoms under control but keep future episodes at bay.

Below are several recommendations for depression therapy that have been proven highly beneficial in treating different forms of depression.

· Cognitive Therapy – With depression, an individual faces the battle of negative thoughts but then as symptoms broaden, thoughts worsen. Cognitive Therapy is designed to address negative thought processes associated with this mental health problem but also thoughts that can exacerbate the problem. The goal with this therapy is to teach an individual how to recognize irrational or harmful thoughts but also replace them with thoughts that are both positive and constructive.

· Behavioral Therapy – Similar to Cognitive Therapy, the difference is that Behavioral Therapy focuses on behavior or actions opposed to thoughts. While not mandatory, most experts agree the combination of Cognitive and Behavioral therapies achieves the best results.

· Experiential Therapy – Although many people have never heard of depression therapy of this type, it has actually been around for some time and has helped many people recapture life before becoming ill. In this case, therapy teaches a person how to distinguish healthy emotional responses from unhealthy ones. The thing that makes this unique to other therapies is that unlike there being a neutral relationship between therapist and patient, the therapist would become an ally to the patient.

· Interpersonal Therapy – We also wanted to add this to the list of depression therapy options since it serves a very important role in battling depression, regardless of type or level of intensity. Remember, there are many things that can trigger depression but when the cause has to do with a person having little to no social support or interpersonal conflicts, this would be the recommended path to healing.

· Online Therapy – This type of therapy for depression should not be overlooked. Although it would not be recommended for someone with a more severe type or case of this disorder, for those struggling with mild to moderate depression it can be helpful. For this, there are several options such as chat rooms, open discussion boards, forums, blogs, instant messaging, hotlines, and more.

· Psychoanalysis – Of all therapies used to treat depression, this is one of the most common but also beneficial. Developed by Sigmund Freud, Psychoanalysis is used to help a person recognize specific behavioral patterns and impulses. Working with a professional, a trusted relationship would form, allowing information to be revealed at which time healing could take place. Often referred to as “talk therapy”, Psychoanalysis is just that, intense communication between the therapist and patient.

· Psychodynamic Therapy – This too is a viable therapy option that has helped many people deal with depression. This type of therapy is just as shown in movies where a person lies on a couch while the therapist delves into the unconscious mind. While Psychodynamic Therapy is not as deep as Psychoanalysis, it has proven to be extremely beneficial.

Even though there are many therapy options specific to depression, none will work unless they are provided by the right therapist. Sometimes, a person has to try more than one therapist before making a final choice. Below we listed just a few tips that can make this an easier and more productive process.

· It could be helpful to choose a therapist who has also struggled with and overcome depression since this person would provide help from a unique perspective

· Whether the therapist is male or female, someone with depression should choose a professional with whom they have chemistry. After all, there has to be a trusted relationship established and unless the two mesh, this would be difficult to accomplish.

· Finally, both therapist and patient need to be in agreement as to the type of therapy but also the purpose. Having shared goals is one of the primary factors in choosing a therapist that will help. This and other depression therapy options involve a connection between the person providing the help and the individual seeking help.

Counseling for Depression

Depression counseling is a highly effective method for getting over stressors and underlying problems that cause this mental health problem. Whether depression is mild or severe, and regardless if a person is being treated with conventional medicine or alternative remedies and treatments, counseling is considered a key piece of the puzzle toward achieving complete healing.

Although depression counseling has been shown to be highly beneficial, it is essential to go through the appropriate therapy led by a professionally licensed professional. With this, a person is provided an opportunity to work through issues that led up to the development of depression. However, the wrong type of counseling would be ineffective or in some instances, detrimental to the goal of getting depression under control.

Because there are people who live with extreme cases of depression, it is important to mention that when someone starts becoming isolated, has trouble concentrating on tasks associated with work or school, finds it nearly impossible to handle daily responsibilities, especially those involving the care of children, or at any time has suicidal thoughts or thoughts of harming another person, seeking immediate medical attention is critical.

Effective Types of Depression Counseling

The goal with depression counseling is to understand the cause of the depression but also to be provided with information and tools to overcome depression. Before it can be determined which type of counseling would be most effective, several things would be considered. Following are examples of the primary factors that dictate which depression counseling should be sought.

· Exact cause of the depression

· Type of depression

· Severity of the depression

· Length of time the individual has struggled with this mental health issue

· Other key stressors involved

· Prior treatments, therapies, and counseling tried that proved ineffective

Keep in mind that every person responds to depression counseling in a unique way, so if a person goes through one kind of therapy but experiences no change or improvement, a fresh evaluation of the situation would help reveal a more appropriate counseling opportunity.

Depression Counseling Options

Typically, the most effective type of depression counseling would be identified during a consultation. Sitting down with a counselor, therapist, or doctor, things like medical history, symptoms, current medications, and other pertinent information would be gathered, followed by an accurate diagnosis and recommendation offered for treatment.

There are times when depression counseling would be used as a standalone treatment but in most cases, experts agree counseling is most effective when coupled with conventional or alternative medicine. In addition, studies have shown that when a healthy lifestyle is followed, counseling and other treatments work better. Below we listed some of the depression counseling options worth consideration, which are also referred to as treatments and therapies within the medical profession.

· Behavioral Therapy – With this, an individual’s behaviors would be assessed to identify those producing a negative impact. Counseling of this kind teaches a person to recognize behaviors considered unhealthy or destructive. Although behavioral issues are often a consequence of depression, poor behavior can also be a trigger. Therefore, learning to transform negative behaviors into positive behaviors could actually prevent a problem from developing or lessen the effects of an existing problem of depression.

· Cognitive Therapy – Another type of depression counseling that has helped many people is known as cognitive therapy. In this case, the focus is on retraining the mind to be positive opposed to negative. As with behavioral therapy, negative thoughts are often the result of depression but again, negative thoughts over time can lead to a problem of depression developing. For this reason, there would be cases in which cognitive therapy would prove beneficial.

· Solution Focused Therapy – One of the symptoms of severe depression is a sense of hopelessness. To someone in this situation, any chance of a bright and happy future is more a dream than reality. This particular method of depression counseling helps an individual realize that things will get better but it is also used as a motivational tool whereby the focus changes from past hurts to future health and wellness.

· Dialectical Behavior Therapy – This is another highly effective type of depression counseling whereby the primary goal is on teaching a person coping skills, along with providing tools for regulating emotion and even improving relationships.

· Psychodynamic Therapy – Many experts believe the main reason for the onset of depression has to do with some kind of unresolved conflict or issue that goes back to a person’s childhood. Using this depression counseling, a person learns to understand what that conflict or issue is and then through numerous sessions with a professional counselor who specializes in this form of therapy, emotions and feelings can be talked and worked through.

Depression Treatment Centers

Depression is something that millions of people deal with on a daily basis. For some of these people, symptoms such as fatigue, poor concentration, low energy, insomnia, restlessness, persistent aches and pains, isolation, anxiety, and pessimism can be treated at home with special remedies or as an outpatient with medications and non-invasive treatments. However, when symptoms intensify, depression treatment centers might be an ideal consideration to get the help needed.

When Are Depression Treatment Centers Needed

The most common symptoms associated with severe depression have been provided below. If someone experiences one or more of these, or a family member or friend sees signs of these symptoms in a loved one, immediate intervention is vital.

· Sudden change from sadness to calmness or even exaggerated happiness

· No interest in anything or anyone

· Excessive talk about death

· Not getting any sleep

· No longer eating

· Writing letters, visiting, or calling to people, especially if those people have not been contacted for some time

· Giving away personal items

· Mentioning suicide

Although depression treatment centers are usually suggested by the treating doctor, an individual or the person’s family could also conduct research to find the exact center that would be the best match. While most depression treatment centers have excellent reputations and offer a variety of depression treatment programs based on an individual’s needs, it is important to note that there are good and not-so-good places. For that reason, we wanted to offer information about what a great center such as this would provide.

How to Identify the Best Depression Treatment Centers

Medical Treatment

For starters, the best depression treatment centers are designed to treat a person from a standard medical and holistic standpoint.

· Standard Medicine – This particular part of depression treatment centers is responsible for prescription medications and conventional treatments. Although some people shy away from prescribed drugs, there have been a number of newly formulated medications in recent years that are highly effective, safe, and easy to use, so unpleasant side effects do not compound the problem of depression. A quality center would keep the amount of medications to a minimal if at all possible.

· Holistic Medicine – Some people get holistic and homeopathic medicine confused. Holistic medicine concentrates on getting a person well as a whole. In other words, rather than merely treat symptoms of depression, this type of medicine would involve finding the underlying cause or causes and treating those as well, along with any other non-related health issues. In this case, diet, exercise, counseling, meditation, and other similar treatment options would be used.

By design, depression treatment centers use a combination of the two treatment types, which ultimately covers everything so the person struggling with depression is given the best chance of recovery possible.

Confidentiality

Another key element of good depression treatment centers is confidentiality. Keep in mind that literally anyone could experience this mental condition to include politicians, actors, doctors, lawyers, and so on, making confidentiality a huge issue. However, keeping information and records protected is just as important for the everyday person. After all, if information about a person going to a treatment facility were to leak, this individual might lose a job, fall out of a relationship, or be shunned by friends, making the problem worse.

Treatment Programs

It is also recommended that any depression treatment centers being considered provide a variety of different treatment programs. Every person will respond in a unique way so if just one or two treatments were available, the individual might not do well. On the other hand, centers with multiple treatments are typically the most effective since professionals could try several programs to find the one that gets the best response.

Medical Professionals and Staff

Obviously, depression treatment centers will only be as good as the medical professionals and support staff running them. For this reason, it would be important to conduct research on the various doctors, nurses, and other staff members before choosing one center. In addition, the center’s reputation should be fully understood. Today, a tremendous amount of information can be found online, so gaining access to this type of data is actually quite easy.

Self-Help for Depression – Effective Options

There are millions of people that live with depression but with the right help the lives of these people can be turned around. Although an individual could consider many treatments, it would be worth for most to look into the options specific to self-help for depression.

For many people, the road to recovery consists of taking an active role. Even when someone is under the care of a licensed medical and/or mental health professional, it is imperative for the person with depression to get involved with the healing phase. This includes becoming educated about the disorder, working hard toward recovery beyond what the doctor orders, and making appropriate lifestyle changes among other things.

Establishing Goals

One mistake people make when using self-help to beat depression is in trying to tackle the entire situation on all at once. It is essential to start slow but also make progress. By taking on everything, the person would begin to experience stress and anxiety but in addition, when something goes wrong, it seems ten times worse than it is.

On the other hand, going slow and achieving small things would be an encouragement for the individual to pushing toward the goal.

Someone with depression must also maintain focus on the goal. Ultimately, an individual wants to reduce or eliminate the symptoms of depression but with this accomplished, the next goal is on preventing future episodes. For one thing, a person has to be realistic, knowing there will be setbacks along the way.

In addition, focus on both goals needs to be broken down into small segments. Again, each time something is accomplished, the individual gains more encouragement and confidence to keep pushing ahead.

Getting Support

Another type of self-help proven beneficial for someone with depression is support. Of course, any encouragement and support provided by family and friends would be great but beyond that, an individual should consider finding a support group formed specifically for this mental health disorder. Keep in mind that along with local support groups there are a number of groups that have been founded online.

Studies show that when an individual attends support meetings or participates in online chat rooms or forums, the process of getting depression under control is smoother. Between loved ones and official support groups, gaining perspective of the problem but also the steps required to defeat it becomes clearer.

Unfortunately, many people in this situation choose isolation instead and while it might be difficult to get to the first meeting, it is a key factor for accomplishing the ultimate goal.

Complete Health

Experts also recommend working toward complete health as a means of dealing with depression. Often, someone with this disorder does not sleep well, eats poorly, and stops doing things once enjoyed. There has to be a mindset established that the individual will do whatever it takes to beat depression. With this done, focus can also be placed on eating well-balanced meals, getting proper sleep, going for walks, spending time with family and friends, and making only healthy lifestyle choices.

Complete health also involves education. As mentioned above, learning about depression but also methods of recovery are critical. Unless an individual understands the illness and the effects it has, it would be extremely difficult to make good choices in getting well, both physically and mentally. Along with learning things through support groups, a person could talk to a doctor or read any number of respected self-help books.

Adopt Positive Thinking Habits

The last thing we wanted to mention has to do with the way a person thinks. Remember, any type of self-help involves discipline, so this too could be challenging but pushing through brings great rewards. For one thing, a person cannot expect perfection. As stated, there will be setbacks along the way. The goal is to eliminate or reduce those setbacks as much as possible, not think they will never occur.

It would also be helpful to consider the effects of the depression on others. This is not intended to put more stress or guilt on the individual but to promote a broader method of thinking. Sometimes, when someone with depression can turn thoughts to the outside it helps to put everything into perspective. 

Most self-help options are tough but staying true to the outcome is what allows a person to enjoy all the benefits of being freed from depression.

How to Beat Depression with Support

Getting the right support would also be a critical means of getting through a period of depression. This could be talking through things with a medical professional, friend, or family member, or perhaps finding a local support group that meets to discuss the effects of depression and methods for getting over it.

Hospitals are an excellent place to start and the most offer different types of support groups for depression. In addition they offer people to join depression meetings. On those meetings there is a group leader, which is usually a doctor, nurse or mental health professional to answer questions and provide tips and advice to beat this bad condition.

Even one-on-one support with a counselor would be an excellent way to get through a tough time. Getting support is nothing to be ashamed of since virtually everyone on the planet goes through depression on one level or another. In fact, people who reach out for help and take the right measures to get better are to be applauded for refusing to let depression take control.

We hope we gave you the courage on taking your next steps to find your way on how to beat depression.

Tips for Choosing the Best Kind of Depression Support

Today we know there are actually several different types of depression, but along with this, medical and mental health professionals have a strong handle on causes, symptoms, and effective treatments. Although there are many things that can help someone with this illness, one of the key factors in getting well is with depression support.

However, the biggest challenge is trying to determine the type of support that would be best. Interestingly, the decision is not cut and dry. Although people would be subjected to the same symptoms associated with each type of depression, actual effects would be unique to the individual. Because of this, not all support options would work for everyone, so sometimes a person has to try more than one before being successful and find out how to overcome their depression.

Family and Friends

For the individual with depression, accepting the olive branch from people that really care typically brings the greatest relief. However, there is a caveat to this in that some people with this illness have no interest in accepting this type of help. Now, if a family and close friends would be willing to meet with a professional counselor they could learn methods of reaching the person they love. 

Organized Support Groups

Hundreds of support groups are also established designed specifically for depression. For this, a person could choose a group that covers all forms of this mental health illness or one that is geared toward on specific kind. No matter the decision, it would be imperative to find a support group with a qualified leader, someone who has personally overcome this illness and knows the struggles but also rewards of a comeback.

If an individual were uncomfortable in attending meetings, had transportation issues, or faced some other obstacle, the other option would be with online meetings. In fact, online depression support online has increased in popularity for these and other reasons. Again, it would be essential to locate the right group with one that has a trained mediator.

Volunteering

Many people never think of volunteering as a type of support for depression but it is, although out-of-the-way of what most people consider. While the symptoms of depression vary according to type, one thing that everyone experiences is a feeling of hopelessness and unworthiness. Often, this causes the person to sink even further into depression, often to the point of drowning in self-pity.

Volunteering is highly beneficial in that it pulls a person with depression out of the darkness and reaffirms the value they offer to others. The type of volunteer work is not critical, more that the individual spends time doing something to help other people in need such as working at a homeless shelter, serving meals in a “soup kitchen”, delivering meals to people on the streets, providing care to someone in a nursing home, and more.

Hotlines

While many hotlines are designated to people in a dire situation such as committing suicide or doing harm to themselves or someone else, there are now a number of hotlines that have been specially formed to give a person with depression the opportunity to talk through a tough situation. For many people, just being able to vent or share a story is all it takes to get back on track, so hotlines are also an excellent support mechanism.

Workshops

We also wanted to mention workshops as a viable resource for overcoming symptoms of depression. Workshops are set up in a variety of ways but the concept for each is to give someone living with depression different situations to work through.

Of course, workshops begin by educating participants so they understand the disorder but also learn coping skills. The newly developed skills would then be tested in solving a problem but while under the supervision and guidance of a trained professional.

Having the ability to learn coping skills is extremely important but as an individual successfully accomplishes various tasks, levels of confidence and self-worth are boosted. The great thing about this type of depression support is that it helps no matter the form of this illness a person has or the level of severity.

Depression Help Online

In addition to conventional treatments used for depression, such as seeing a medical and/or mental health professional, people have discovered various methods of depression help online. Although some resources are much better than others, most people are surprised at the number of viable options available.

Because this has become an important part in helping coping with depression and eliminate future issues, we felt it important to offer information regarding the types of resources currently available.

Reasons for Going Online

Before we go over the list of different help types, we wanted to offer insight into why this has become a popular option for people with depression. One reason is that so many people simply do not have the financial means or insurance coverage to seek more conventional help. Even though there are hundreds of free programs around, most individuals feel seeing a licensed doctor is the best approach.

People also use online resources for depression because of embarrassment, shame, and even guilt. Because forums, chat rooms, blogs, and other resources allow an individual to remain anonymous, personal information can be shared without fear of anyone knowing the person behind the problem. This type of help actually allows many people with depression the opportunity to open up, something that would be difficult for some using more conventional methods of help.

Depression help found on the internet is also convenient. Most people work long hours and sometimes, more than one job. That coupled with raising a family, caring for aging parents, maintaining a home, running errands, and all the other responsibilities of daily life makes it near impossible to set time aside to see a medical and/or mental health professional in person. On the other hand, with the internet, an individual could log on according to schedule.

Types of Depression Help Online

As mentioned, the options for depression help online available today is quite impressive. All the different possibilities means everyone living with depression could get help based on the type of resource needed. Below is information about some of the most effective resources along with a brief description of what each has to offer.

· Forums – Online forums allow people to share information, discuss issues, and get the support needed

· Blogs – For blogs written specific to depression, an individual could learn a lot of the type of illness but also things that work to ease symptoms. Typically, depression blogs are written by people that have conquered this mental health disorder, so the information is valuable. One such blog is this one in which you are reading this article. ☺

· Facebook groups – Facebook groups can be a great source of community and online support. However, the advice you find on these groups doesn’t come from mental health professionals. In these groups, the focus is mostly on lifting each other up and reminding that they aren’t alone.

· Chat Rooms – Similar to forums, chat rooms are unique in that people can have real-time conversations. For someone who needs help quickly, a well-established and mediated chat room would be an excellent option.

· Crisis Lines – Although an individual should call 911 or go directly to a hospital if having suicidal or homicidal thoughts, for those that choose not to, crisis lines are a good alternative. In this case, a qualified professional receives phone calls from people in crisis and through conversation, offers help or encourages the individual to get help locally.

· Mental Health Doctors – Because so many people are affected by depression, some doctors have created sites that offer some or all of the above resources and tools. The one difference is that usually, a licensed doctor that specializes in depression would be available to answer questions or provide guidance.

Most of the different options for depression help online mentioned above are free. As a result, an individual living with this condition could gain access to the type of information, tools, and resources needed but without added stress. Multiple organizations can be found simply by conducting a search through Google or one of the other larger search engines but if preferred, a person could ask a doctor for recommendations.

We just want to stress that while depression help online has its place in treating this mental health disorder, it should never be the sole method for getting this particular issue under control. Sadly, thousands and thousands of people have succumbed to suicide or committed horrific crimes because of depression. This is a serious problem and one that must always be taken serious but for most people, getting help online is one method for regaining control of life.

Depression Forums

To understand benefits associated with an online forum of this kind a person has to first know what it is. This type of forum is an online meeting place for people who live with depression of one kind or another. There are general forums in which discussions take place regarding all forms of depression but others that focus on just one form. In addition, some online forums consist of random people who long on to chat and share without the site having a moderator while others have someone who oversees conversations to help keep things on track.

Because these online forums have become so popular, an individual could choose from multiple options. Of course, the goal would be finding one that an individual feels comfortable with but also a forum that offers the right kind of support, encouragement, and resources. A person might like the very first site visited or spend time visiting several before locking into the one that best matches need.

Remember, each depression forum is unique although the concept is shared across the board. We wanted to make a few suggestions that a person could consider but there are many others that would be good choices.

· Mixed Nuts – This forum tends to take a lighter approach but visitors do have access to great information, support, and even a suicide crisis line

· PsychForums – In addition to consisting of an online support group, this forum features open discussions and a depression message board

· DepressionTribe – At DepressionTribe, a variety of tools and resources are provided such as support groups, chat rooms, blogs, self-help forums, and much more.

· Wing of Madness – This online forum links people living with this mental health problem together.

· Mental Health Forum – A friendly, safe community supporting each other's mental health. They are open 24 hours a day, 365 days a year.

Is a Depression Forum Beneficial?

There are several mediums for Depression Help Online with a depression forum being one that has grown in popularity. Even so, people want to know if an online forum is really the right method for getting through a period of depression.

The truth is that for some types of depression and those of a mild to moderate level, this could prove beneficial. A forum could also help someone struggling with clinical depression, major depression, or bipolar but because these are extremely serious, an individual would also need to be under the care of a licensed medical doctor and/or mental health professional.

Forum Benefits

Anyone interested in joining a forum should choose the right one but also make wise decisions while participating in conversations. Although the majority of people are upfront and honest, unfortunately, there are times when people with alternative motives join these sites. We recommend using a forum for depression that has an online moderator. This person would watch conversations, keep things running in the right direction, and watch out for possible issues.

The right forum can be highly beneficial for many people that suffer from depression. Although this is something that anyone who needs help could use and participate in, forums are especially helpful to anyone without a support system. For instance, someone without a family or close friends would find these online sites a place to vent, get support, share stories, and learn coping skills.

Someone without the financial means or insurance to get professional help or even a person who tends to be shy and private would also find the forums beneficial. Because people have the ability to stay anonymous, conversations would never create a sense of embarrassment or shame. With this, being open about the different symptoms and experiences of depression would be easier to discuss.

In answer to the question of a depression forum being beneficial, the answer is yes. As long as an individual finds the right forum and uses all the tools and resources available, this would be one more avenue for overcoming this mental health disorder. However, a person should never use an online forum as the sole treatment option for depression.

Depression Chat Rooms

Depression chat rooms are a method of communication used by multiple people who are trying to find out how to overcome depression. Based on design, this medium provides a means of gaining and sharing information via online forums and instant messaging using real-time chats. Of course, technology has advanced to the point that along with information, graphics, audio, video, and files can be shared, webcams used, and conversations with one or several people started.

Knowing the Rules of Behavior

The level of sophistication with today’s chat rooms is astonishing. There are thousands of sites on virtually any topic imaginable. While many chat rooms are beneficial, there are also potential dangers that should be understood. Especially when talking about depression chat rooms, following established protocol is mandatory. These sites are overseen by administrators capable of stopping a conversation or terminating a user’s access if violations occur.

Reputable depression chat rooms operate under very strict rules. Prior to being given access to the area of communication, an individual would be required to read and agree to the set rules and regulations of each site. Although this is common practice no matter the topic, when it comes to depression chat rooms maintaining a high level of integrity but also safety for users is the primary focus.

Some of the rules associated with depression chat rooms include the following:

- Must be at least 18 years of age
- No offensive language can be used
- Promotion of negative topics, violence, and hate mail will never be tolerated
- Advertising and marketing of any kind is prohibited
- Typed messages cannot be in all CAPS as this is the same as shouting and therefore offensive
- Argumentative behavior is not acceptable

Benefits of Depression Chat Rooms

As stated, well organized, operated, and mediated depression chat rooms can be extremely beneficial to someone with this mental health disorder or concerned family members and friends. When used for the right purpose, benefits such as those listed below would be realized:

· Shared Information – Users gain access to a wealth of information on topics such as medications, conventional medical treatments, alternative remedies and solutions, qualified doctors, research and new developments, available support groups, methods of coping, and much more.

· Needed Support – Most people with depression feel alone and misunderstood. Having the opportunity to visit respected depression chat rooms provides a forum for getting support and encouragement needed to cope with this disorder but also seeking proper medical care.

· Risks and Side Effects of Medication – Today, there are many new medications being used to treat the various types of depression. While many are highly effective while producing little to no side effects, others have created significant problems. By gaining access to depression chat rooms, people with this disorder can share personal experiences with different medications.

· Question and Answer Sessions – In some cases, vital information pertaining to depression can be difficult to find. Depression chat rooms provide a great platform on which question and answer sessions about all aspects of this disorder can be discussed.

· Emotional Expression – While family members and friends try to understand what someone with depression deals with on a daily basis, full understanding is difficult without having personal experience. Sometimes, just having the chance to express emotions makes a person feel better.

· Availability – We also wanted to point out that depression chat rooms operate 24 hours a day, 7 days a week, and 365 days a year. Because of that, a person having a difficult day or struggling with a certain situation would have a resource and outlet available when needed.

Potential Harm of Depression Chat Rooms

In addition to benefits of using depression chat rooms, there are some potential risks. Learning about things perceived as being potentially harmful would make it possible to avoid specific depression chat rooms. Remember, chat rooms that have risks are generally those without an online administrator, so when searching for possible sites to visit, we recommend finding those with strict rules and regulators/enforcers.

· Medical Help Alternative – Although a great deal of information is shared on depression chat rooms, at no time should this be used as an alternative to conventional medical or mental health care. If left untreated, there are certain types of depression that can lead to suicide and even homicide, so the condition, as well as information must be taken seriously.

· Pranksters and Abusers – Again, monitored sites typically have fewer problems with pranksters and abusers but unfortunately, there are evil people who think it is fun or funny to act inappropriately or mischievously even in chat rooms designed to cover critical issues of this topic.

· Administrators – Although these professionals usually do an excellent job in keeping people in line, they are not medical or mental health professionals. Therefore, conversations that occur within depression chat rooms should never be led by site administrators.

· Mood Feeding – This term refers to people with depression that feed off the mood of other users. Someone struggling with depression feels supported, encouraged, and hopeful when conversations are positive. However, when depression chat rooms consist of negative conversations, especially in relation to thoughts of suicide or homicide, a person with this mental health disorder could easily feed off that mood as well, causing symptoms to worsen.

Depression HotlineDedicated to Saving Lives

Depression of any type and on any level is a serious mental health condition. Making this problem even worse is the fact that so many people are never diagnosed, which means never getting proper treatment. Regardless if a person is under care or not, when in the middle of an episode, perspective on life can be distorted. It is at times such as this that people need to know the saving grace a depression hotline provides.

No matter the type or severity of this mental health problem, or if currently being treated by a top professional, there are times when the symptoms of depression can be overwhelming. The trained professionals who work for a depression hotline provide an important service with tremendous benefits such as those listed below:

· Available to anyone with depression but also friends, family members, coworkers, and neighbors that might be concerned for someone affected by this illness. Support and guidance is offered 24 hours a day, 7 days a week, and 365 days a year

· Help is offered for depression of any type or level of intensity

· Calls are anonymous

· Service is provided to people of all ages

· Hotlines services are available for all languages, including TTY support for the deaf and hearing impaired

The professionals that man the phones are not only required to complete intense specialized training but also dedicated to helping people dealing with this type of mental health problem. Another aspect of a top depression hotline is the availability of additional services provided by special response teams. These professionals are trained to debrief people and groups after a catastrophic disaster, giving prescription medication and emergency financial assistance, offering referrals, and more.

Although there are many services provided by a depression hotline, the primary focus is on saving lives. Providing a way for people to talk, get guidance, or be offered support has saved lives. Sadly many people have committed suicide because of the effects of this mental health illness. The professionals working for hotlines are dedicated to giving people hope and thereby reducing the number of lives lost.

These resources can provide you with immediate help worldwide:

USA

911 Emergency
+1 (800) 273-8255 National Suicide Prevention Lifeline
+1 (800) 799-7233 National Domestic Violence Hotline
+1 (800) 996-6228 Family Violence Helpline
+1 (800) 784-2433 National Hopeline Network
+1 (800) 366-8288 Self-Harm Hotline
+1 (800) 230-7526 Planned Parenthood Hotline
+1 (800) 222-1222 American Association of Poison Control Centers
+1 (800) 622-2255 Alcoholism & Drug Dependency Hope Line
+1 (800) 233-4357 National Crisis Line, Anorexia and Bulimia
+1 (888) 843-4564 GLBT Hotline
+1 (866) 488-7386 TREVOR Crisis Hotline
+1 (800) 221-7044 AIDS Crisis Line
contact-usa.org Lifeline Crisis Chat
veteranscrisisline.net Veterans Crisis Line
suicideprevention.wikia.com Suicide Prevention Wiki

Canada

911 Emergency
+1 (888) 353-2273 Hotline
yourlifecounts.org YourLifeCounts.org
suicideprevention.wikia.com Suicide Prevention Wiki

UK & Ireland

112 / 999 Emergency
+44 (0) 8457 90 90 90 Hotline (UK - Local rate)
+44 (0) 8457 90 91 92 Hotline (UK - Minicom)
1850 60 90 90 Hotline (ROI - Local rate)
1850 60 90 91 Hotline (ROI - Minicom)
nhs.uk Help for suicidal thoughts (UK)
yourlifecounts.org YourLifeCounts.org (UK & Ireland)
samaritans.org Samaritans.org (UK & Ireland)

Australia

000 Emergency
1 300 13 11 14 LifeLine Australia
yourlifecounts.org YourLifeCounts.org

New Zealand

111 Emergency
0800 543 354 Lifeline 24/7 Helpline
0508 828 865 Suicide Crisis Helpline
yourlifecounts.org YourLifeCounts.org

Europe

112 Emergency
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  1. Excellent article on different ways to beat depression...

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