With the arrival of World Health Day every April, taking the time to reflect on vital issues can be a key step in improving your overall quality of life. In the past, this important holiday has helped spread awareness of diseases such as diabetes, blood pressure, and food-based illnesses by sharing knowledge and advocating preventative actions. However, this year we are taking a step back to understand that not all conditions can be evident to the outside eye. Each year, more than 16 million American adults suffer from depression, making it one of the most common mental illnesses in the nation. From this, 7 million of those affected are over the age of 65. In honor of the World Health Day’s ‘Let’s Talk’ campaign, which seeks to spread awareness of this vital issue, Choice Health Management offers these essential management guidelines so that you can find the help you need to live a full life:
Know the Symptoms
Allowing depression to go untreated can dramatically decrease your well-being. Although it can be easy, dismissing warning signs and treating them as common mood swings can have severe future consequences. To ensure you get the help necessary to live your days to the fullest, recognize the symptoms. Although feeling sadness, hopeless, cranky, nervous and disengaged are the most publicized effects, they are not the only indicators. If you are feeling fatigue, have consistent headaches, abdominal cramps, digestive issues, an increase or decrease in your appetite and experience insomnia, these can also be important signs of a more serious problem.
If you experience these symptoms, don’t keep it inside. Speaking to family, friends and medical professionals is a key component of managing the effects of the disease. If you are not yet comfortable in seeking personal support, contacting an advocacy group such as the Depression and Bipolar Support Alliance can be an important first step in coming to terms with the condition. No matter which option you take, by breaking the barrier and seeking help you can find the treatment that’s effective for your unique needs and have a core team that will provide vital support with the transition.
A key tool in the fight against depression is keeping active. With the arrival of spring, it’s the perfect time to enjoy walks and other outdoor events. Spending the day in a park can also help increase relaxation and prevent possible anxiety. If you are struggling to make it outside, start small. Make it a point to walk each day to the end of your driveway and back. Additionally, try to incorporate more healthy foods into your diet and eliminate caffeine, alcohol, and cigarettes. To help stay active, you can also join community clubs and groups or simply ask a friend to accompany you on a daily stroll. Even the smallest steps can make a major impact in improving your overall well-being.
Although depression is an ongoing fight, with support and healthy habits, you can continue to overcome the obstacles. If you need professional assistance to help manage the symptoms, Choice Health Management offers both independent and assisted living so that you get the professional aid needed to live a full life. Contact our friendly team today to find out how we can help you.