Defeat Depression & Insomnia

Learn how to defeat depression and insomnia from someone who's been there ...

Depression & Insomnia

What is Depression?
 
Depression is a mental state characterized by a pessimistic sense of inadequacy and a despondent lack of activity.
 
Unfortunately, most people experience depression for 3 reasons:
  1. Being overwhelmed by stress, work, family, environment, and emotional events such as divorce, bankruptcy, or the loss of a family member or friend.
  2. The biochemical/hormonal imbalances created by the excess production of hormones such as cortisol, and the reduced production of hormones such as serotonin. 
  3. The lack of knowledge in being able to effectively cope with stress and emotional events, and believing that doctors and drugs are the answer.
The good news is that most cases of depression can be defeated without the need for drugs by doing 3 things:
  1. Utilize your inner spirit and a support system to have hope and not feel overwhelmed; and, achieve a higher quality of sleep and relaxation.
  2. Acquire the knowledge to effectively balance your biochemical/hormonal levels.
  3. Make dietary and lifestyle changes to improve the biochemical/hormonal levels, increasing the production of serotonin while preventing the excess production of cortisol.
Depression is a mental health disorder that can affect the way you eat and sleep, the way you feel about yourself, and the way you think about things. A depressive disorder is more than a passing mood. It is not a sign of personal weakness, and it cannot be willed or wished away.
 
A depressive disorder involves the body, mood, and thoughts. People who are depressed cannot "snap out of it" and get better. Without treatment, symptoms can last for months or years. Treatments such as antidepressant medications and psychotherapy can reduce and sometimes eliminate the symptoms of depression.
 
Depression Statistics
  • Depressive disorders affect 20 million American adults or about 9.5% of the U.S. population age 18 and older in a given year. This includes major depressive disorder, dysthymic disorder, and bipolar disorder.
  • Everyone will at some time in their life be affected by depression -- their own or someone else's, according to Australian Government statistics. (Depression statistics in Australia are comparable to those of the US and UK.)
  • Pre-schoolers are the fastest-growing market for antidepressants. At least four percent of preschoolers -- over a million -- are clinically depressed.
  • The rate of increase of depression among children is an astounding 23%. 
  • 15% of the population of most developed countries suffers severe depression.
  • 30% of women are depressed. Men's figures were previously thought to be half that of women, but new estimates are higher.
  • 54% of people believe depression is a personal weakness.
  • 41% of depressed women are too embarrassed to seek help.
  • 80% of depressed people are not currently having any treatment.
  • 92% of depressed African-American males do not seek treatment.
  • 15% of depressed people will commit suicide.
  • Depression will be the second largest killer after heart disease by 2020 -- and studies show depression is a contributory factor to fatal coronary disease.
  • Depression results in more absenteeism than almost any other physical disorder and costs employers more than US$51 billion per year in absenteeism and lost productivity, not including high medical and pharmaceutical bills.
Three of the most common forms of depressive disorders are:
  • Major Depression
  • Dysthymia
  • Bipolar Disorder
Even within these types of depression there are variations in the number of symptoms, their severity, and persistence.
 
Major depression is manifested by a combination of symptoms (see symptom list below) that interfere with the ability to work, study, sleep, eat, and enjoy once pleasurable activities. Some people have a single episode of depression, but many have episodes that recur.
 
Dysthymia is a less severe type of depression that lasts a long time but involves less severe symptoms. If you suffer from dysthymia you probalby lead a normal life, but you may not be functioning well or feeling good. People with dysthymia may also experience major depressive episodes at some time in their lives.
 
Bipolar Disorder (also called manic-depression) is another type of depressive disorder. Bipolar disorder is thought to be less common than other depressive disorders. If you have bipolar disorder you are troubled by cycling mood swings - usually severe highs (mania) and lows (depression). The mood swings are sometimes dramatic and rapid, but usually are more gradual. When in the depressed stage, a person can have any or all of the symptoms of a depressive disorder. When in the manic stage, the individual may be overactive, over-talkative, and have a great deal of energy. Mania affects thinking, judgment, and social behavior, sometimes in ways that cause serious problems and embarrassment. A person in a manic phase may feel elated, full of grand schemes that might range from unwise business decisions to romantic sprees. Mania, left untreated, may worsen to a psychotic state, where the person is out of touch with reality.

Symptoms of Depression and Mania

These lists are not complete, and not everyone who is depressed or manic experiences all of these symptoms. The severity of symptoms varies with individuals and varies over time.

Depression

  • Persistent sad, anxious, or "empty" mood
  • Feelings of hopelessness, pessimism
  • Feelings of guilt, worthlessness, helplessness
  • Loss of interest or pleasure in hobbies and activities that were once enjoyed, including sex
  • Decreased energy, fatigue, being "slowed down"
  • Difficulty concentrating, remembering, making decisions
  • Insomnia, early-morning awakening, or oversleeping
  • Appetite and/or weight loss or overeating and weight gain
  • Thoughts of death or suicide; suicide attempts
  • Restlessness, irritability
  • Persistent physical symptoms that do not respond to treatment, such as headaches, digestive disorders, and chronic pain

Mania

  • Abnormal or excessive elation
  • Unusual irritability
  • Decreased need for sleep
  • Grandiose notions
  • Increased talking
  • Racing thoughts
  • Increased sexual desire
  • Markedly increased energy
  • Poor judgment
  • Inappropriate social behavior
Cycle of Depression

Negative events such as several deaths feed into your negative thinking, low self-esteem, feeling of hopelessness, etc. and biochemical/hormonal imbalances which may extend your feeling of sadness and feeding into lower serotonin levels and higher cortisol levels creating a vicious cycle of depression (as depicted in the following diagram).       

      

Note: In order to break this cycle of depression, you must seek proper treatment.One of the keys to defeating depression is to break the cycle of depression as depicted in the following diagram.

 
Notes: 
 

Insomnia

What Is Insomnia?

Insomnia is a sleep disorder in which a person experiences poor sleep or has trouble sleeping. Insomnia can involve:
  • Difficulty falling asleep
  • Difficulty staying asleep (that is, waking up many times during the night), without necessarily having had any difficulty falling asleep
  • Waking up too early in the morning
  • Not feeling refreshed after a night's sleep
In any of these cases the person feels tired the next day, or feels as if he or she did not have enough sleep.

Poor sleep for any length of time can lead to mood disturbances, lack of motivation, decreased attention span, trouble with concentration, low levels of energy, and increased fatigue.

About one-third of the average person's life is spent sleeping. Healthy sleep is vital to the human body and important for the optimal functioning of the brain and other organs.

There are three types of insomnia:
  1. Transient, or mild, insomnia - sleep difficulties that last for a few days; there is little or no evidence of impairment of functioning during the day
  2. Short-term, or moderate, insomnia - sleep difficulties that last for less than a month, that mildly affect functioning during the day, together with feelings of irritability and fatigue
  3. Chronic, or severe, insomnia - sleep difficulties that last for more than a month, that severely impair functioning during the day, and cause strong feelings of restlessness, irritability, anxiety, and fatigue
Note: Refer to the Get-Well Program web page for sleeping tips.
 
 

 
Disclaimer: The information in this website is provided for informational purposes only and is not a substitute for the advice provided by your own physician. Always consult with your physician before making any dietary or lifestyle changes.

 


Welcome

TV Interview (Crossing Paths)

 

TV Interview


Subscribe to My Site

Supplements

God's Super Foods

Google Ads