As 2017 continues and we begin to settle back into our day-to-day lives, it is vital that we commit ourselves daily to mental health and self-care, especially if you struggle with depression. Easier said than done, right?
Don’t worry. We’ve compiled these at-home depression treatment tips for Baton Rouge to help you on the road to depression management.
Incorporate exercise and nutrition into your daily Baton Rouge routine
Healthful eating, regular exercise, and avoiding depression triggers—such as alcohol and other drugs—have been shown to aid in the long-term management of depression and anxiety. By shopping mindfully and sticking to an achievable meal plan, you can prepare nutritious meals for yourself in less time than it takes to cross the Horace Wilkinson Bridge.
Whether it’s working in a walk, playing golf, or hitting the gym, daily physical exercise has been shown to increase endorphin levels, relax your mind, and may even help with insomnia.
If healthy eating and daily exercise are not delivering the results you hoped for, consider incorporating B-vitamin supplements into your diet. Found primarily in lean poultry, egg yolks, liver, and fish, B-vitamins play an essential part in the production of mood-regulating brain chemicals. If you are currently taking medication for depression, consult with your doctor about how the supplement may interact with your medication before adding B-vitamins to your grocery list.
Prioritize sleep and stress reduction
The effort you devote consciously to managing your depression can be greatly impacted by the quality of your unconscious time. If you are not receiving enough quality sleep, you may experience increased irritability, moodiness, sadness, and fatigue. Insomnia and restless sleep can make you more susceptible to stress, which can also exacerbate depression symptoms. Aim to get 7-9 hours of quality sleep each night to put yourself and your depression management on the right foot every morning. Check out these tips for settling down and turning in:
- Get up at the same time each morning (even weekends)
- Set aside time for problem-solving during the day to avoid frantic thinking at night
- Avoid drinking caffeine after 4pm and try to limit yourself to 2 cups of caffeine-heavy drinks during the day
- Do not use alcohol to help you sleep. As the alcohol is metabolized, it can cause you to sleep less deeply and wake frequently.
- Allow for 30 minutes of winding down before going to bed. So put aside the work and settle into something relaxing, like a guided meditation or familiar book.
If these tips don’t help with your insomnia, consult with your psychiatrist about non-habit-forming supplements for sleep, like melatonin.
Seek social support to help manage depression at home
Reducing isolation can play a key role in managing depression at home. Keep in regular contact with friends, family, or a peer group. Volunteering offers social support, as well as the reward that comes with helping others.
In addition to regular social interaction with peers, it’s important to maintain your scheduled appointments with your psychiatrist or counselor. These appointments give you the space and security to vocalize your struggles with depression and collaborate with your doctor on the best depression treatment path for you. Depression treatment is not one-size-fits-all and as you work with your doctor, you may find that thinking patterns and behaviors that worked previously are no longer. By maintaining your scheduled appointments, you can overcome the roadblocks and continue down the road to depression management.
Consider giving telepsychiatry in Baton Rouge a try
Is balancing your job, social life, and family’s appointments making it difficult to keep your psychiatry appointments? Don’t forgo. Go forward. Consider giving telepsychiatry a try. Whether you’re in need of intensive counseling, behavioral therapy, stress management, or life coaching, telepsychiatry offers a HIPAA-compliant, private way to access your psychiatrist and receive personal care from the comfort of your own home.
Psychiatry Associates of Baton Rouge is proud to now offer telepsychiatry services to its patients. For more information and to find out if you qualify for telepsychiatric services in Baton Rouge, give the mental health experts at Psychiatry Associates a call.