Symptoms of depression are characterized by sadness, drowsiness, loss of energy, and decreased productivity. Depression symptoms are an accurate reflection of how the brain works. Let’s examine what happens in the brain when we encounter depressive symptoms.
Continue reading to discover:
The biological component of depression
How depression causes suicidal thoughts
How to reduce suicidal symptoms
The biological component of depression indicates hormonal imbalances or brain impairments that lead to malfunctions in specific brain regions. Where there is a triggering factor, which could be social, physical or psychological, it can disrupt the brain functions. For instance, someone who frequently hears frightful news about Nigeria may frequently experience the secretion of adrenalin. This secretion may impair brain functions. Another illustration is when someone repeatedly thinks about a painful occurrence in the past. Such prolonged negative thinking can cause a hormonal imbalance where some hormones, like norepinephrine, are generated in excess while others, like dopamine or serotonin, are produced insufficiently.
This implies that depressive symptoms, which are more psychological in nature manifest after every other factor including social factors have interacted with biological factors and processes.
How depression causes suicidal thoughts?
It starts with a feeling of being drained when you feel a lack of energy and motivation. You experience this feeling because you have insufficient dopamine, majorly due to some impairments in the brain caused by dysfunctional thoughts and destructive beliefs. Without motivation, you refuse to take action and this continues to make you feel so distant from your ideal self and goal. As a human, you most definitely have goals or interests you want to pursue, but there is a perceived large gap between your current self and where you like to be in life. This large gap is further expanded by the distorted thoughts that continue to give you reasons not to take action and to remain afraid. Then, you begin to feel helpless and hopeless. As a result of this, the survival instinct comes into play and triggers the thoughts to end your own life, because of the strong feeling you have that nothing else can be done to make your situation better. This reveals that your distorted thoughts trigger your distressing emotions. Therefore, when you restructure your thoughts, you feel better and do better for yourself and your well-being.
How to reduce depressive symptoms?
Adopt Healthy Coping Mechanisms: When you face any challenge, actively make efforts to address it instead of sweeping it under the carpet or using a maladaptive coping mechanism such as drug abuse. Get quality sleep and avoid aimlessly surfing the net.
Thought regulation: When you feel emotional distress, you should take time to assess your thoughts. If you notice that the thoughts are so much about the past or the future, take a deep breath and transition your thoughts to the current moment.
Mindfulness exercise: Practice meditation or breathing exercises every day. You can learn more about such practice on youtube or other blog sites.
Behavioral Activations: When you do not feel like completing an important task or healthy behavior, do not surrender to the feelings instead, you should take a step to get it done, even if for some minutes.
Cognitive Appraisal: When you are experiencing negative thoughts, you should take time to identify those thoughts and appraise them accordingly to ensure they match reality. Usually, you will realize they are distorted thoughts with no true justification. You may find journaling helpful for this.
Keep yourself engaged: Make it a habit to engage in an activity that brings your attention to the moment or makes you move your body such as exercise, or strategy games.
Speak to someone: When you are going through psychological distress, and then you feel a need to talk to someone, yes, it is advisable to speak to a trusted person around you.
Visit a mental health professional: If you have practiced the above-listed suggestions and you still experience emotional distress, then it is time to speak to a mental health professional to receive adequate care for your mental health.
Thank you for reading. Please note that depressive symptoms do not just disappear, you must be committed to the above-listed suggested practice to see a noticeable difference. We wish you well as you achieve optimal mental well-being.
Also Read: What You Must Know About Depression
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