Monday, May 2, 2011

Understanding Depression: Cognitive Behavioral Therapy and Homeopathy to treat depression

As per the World Health Organization, by 2020 depression will become the second most common cause of disability around the world. Though depression tends to affect women more than men, recent evidence is showing an increase in incidence of depression among males. Cognitive Behavioral Therapy and Homeopathy are extremely effective in treating mild to moderate form of depression and alleviating the symptoms associated with depression

Incidence of Depression
increasing among young
adult males
Understanding Depression: Types of Depressions and Key symptoms

Depression is a disorder which affects the body, way of thinking and mood of an individual. Since it has implications on the ability of an individual to think clearly and rationally, it clogs the process of thinking and may manifest in different forms ranging from sleep disturbances to the way one handles stressful situation.

It needs to be understood that depression is not a sign of personal weakness and is not the same as temporary state of sadness. These are some of the misconceptions that prevent individuals from accepting the condition.

Depression can be typified into,

  1. Exogenous depression, which is associated with an external factors like a divorce or the death of a loved one
  2. Endogenous depression caused due to a feeling of isolation or unhappiness not specifically related to an external factor.

 Some of the key symptoms associated with depression include,

  • Psychological symptoms include insomnia, loss of interest in sex, loss of interest in hobbies and generalized feeling of hopelessness
  • Social symptoms include change in attitude towards friends and family, tendency to talk about the past, tendency to blame others for their problems and generalized aversion to social gatherings
  • Physical symptoms include change in eating habits i.e. becoming overweight or complete loss of appetite, generalized weakness, unexplainable pain and aches in the joints, etc
  • Mental symptoms include irritability, fatigue, inability to concentrate and make decisions, poor memory, loss of interest in sex, etc

 Cognitive Behavioral Therapy to treat Depression

Cognitive-behavioral therapy focuses on increasing the level of self esteem which in turn would aid the individual to think positively and clearly. Cognitive therapy is a comprehensive process of supporting an individual in overcoming the problems and issues in life. Though CBT is a complex therapy, some of the simple steps include,

  1. Identification of the problem: Cognitive therapy focuses on attempting to identify the underlying cause or event that is associated with depression. The person is prompted to talk about his past and his reaction of for specific events or images are captured. This provides direction to the psychologists about the underlying problem
  2. Once the problem is identified that individual is helped in rationalizing his fear. The problem with depression is that individuals tend to over emphasis on the severity of a particular problem. The psychologist helps the individual understand that the problem is not so severe and helps the individual cope up.
  3. Behavioral change helps the individual cope up with the problem. Behavioral change helps in the individual overcome negative self talk or negative automatic thoughts along with pessimistic thinking and overgeneralization

 Though the entire process may take upto several months, CBT is one of the most effective and proven techniques of fighting depression, especially in cases of mild to moderate depression

Homeopathy for Depression

Homeopathy has several
drugs to manage
Homeopathy has been beneficial in management of depression. Some of the drugs used to treat depression effectively include,

  • Ignatia Amara: This drug is beneficial for individuals who attempt to suppress their greif and emotional despair, which may often manifest in the form of outbursts of hysteria and mood swings.
  • Aurum Metallicum: This drug is useful for individuals with suicidal thoughts and suffers from a feeling of worthlessness. The drug is effective on individuals who have become workaholics due to an excessive sense of duty.
  • Natrum Muraticum: Another homeopathic remedy that is effective in sensitive and serious minded individuals. Depression in this case is associated with suppression of feelings and emotions and high degree of irritability. Often these individuals are averse to consolation and appear to be in control of the situation. These individuals often suffer from chronic headache during the day. 

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