Last week my mum was talking about depression and it’s treatment and she came up with the best analogy I have ever heard. Depression is like a fire alarm. It’s a useful tool as it tells us that something is wrong, but it’s how we deal with the alarm that truly determines how we utilise it. There are two ways you can fix the problem, you can find the reason the alarm is going off or put on a pair of ear muffs. No alarm, no problem. One is short term, one is long term. One deals with the cause, another the symptoms. What I want to convey here is the use of exercise and diet to fight the fires raging inside many. As a fire extinguisher is much better than a pair of ear muffs.
You hear in the news that the “depression crisis” has hit a new high, and rates keep on climbing despite millions of bottles of pills being given to patients all across the world. Clearly something needs to change. Attitudes need to change. As explained briefly in the introduction, depression is the language that the body uses to show you that something is wrong. It may be anxiety, low self esteem or some other underlying condition- but no one develops into a depressive state without one of these conditions present in the background. Sadly, often times, these conditions are such that they lie invisible to the onlooker but are very much active in the person they chose to haunt. They only become obvious with the help of depression- something that is looked down upon with such hatred and suspicion in the modern world of medicine.
So we have found that the issue is that of the underlying conditions and not the depression itself. So how should we treat it?
Well, just the opposite of what we do now. What we need to be doing is actively going after the conditions that cause the depression. We should spend our time and energy putting out the fire not finding a pair of ear muffs. So… Where do I fit in in this? Well as I mentioned in a previous mental health post, exercise has a huge effect on your psyche. Due to the various chemicals released in your brain upon completion of exercise, things like self- esteem begin to increase, self confidence develops and a desire to do more exercise will follow. This matched with the self progressive nature of exercise sends you into a spiral of success. However, of course exercise is not the only way you can help remedy such problems but for the sake of this blog I will not mention others.
I hope this has been of some help to someone. Any further questions then leave them below- I would love to answer them.