Monday, April 24, 2006

Depression – How It Affects Our Sleep - By Wendy Owen

Depression is a serious illness that can affect our work, family and social life. It can make us feel bad and even lead to suicide in some serious cases. To make matters worse, depression can negatively impact on our sleep. Being depressed can wake us up in the early hours of the morning when unpleasant thoughts and feelings tend to seem a lot worse than during the day.

It’s important not to ignore or try to hide depression. There is medical help available in the majority of cases. Depression is merely a clinical illness like a cold or flu, it is nothing to be ashamed of.

Each one of us had at some point a depressing sad moment. Depression is a normal human reaction associated to a loss, with the tumult of everyday life or with an agitated sentimental life. Sometimes the sadness sensation passes but sometimes it doesn’t, it becomes more persistent and it can lead to nervous breakdowns.

Diseases of the nervous system are very serious and that is why it is important not to pass them off without proper help when we realize we can’t handle them by ourselves. Getting help is not only normal, but vital.

What are the symptoms of depression and is it possible to prevent it? It is important to recognize the symptoms, so we can seek help immediately.

Here are some of the symptoms of depression:

- sadness
- loss of energy and enthusiasm
- a feeling of hopelessness
- finding no joy anymore the things you used to love
- having trouble concentrating
- uncontrolled crying
- headaches, other types of inexplicable aches and itches
- needing to sleep a lot or on the contrary not getting any sleep at all
- loss of appetite and consequent weight loss

These are just some of the symptoms of depression and if you’re experiencing some of them, don’t try to cope on your own. Talk to a close friend or a specialist without delay.

Don’t try and tackle the symptoms one by one. For instance you can’t sort out your insomnia while you’re still depressed. Alleviating the depression will probably result in your sleep patterns returning to normal.

What causes depression? There is no single cause. This is a complex disease that can appear as a result of multiple causes. Depression can also be transmitted among persons that are close to each other, by influence.

There is proof that persons suffering from depression exhibit changes in the brain’s chemistry. There is also proof that depression can be genetic or learned. Children affected by the depression of their parents or parents whose children suffer from chronic depression are more likely to be affected themselves by this illness.

To try and prevent depression we have to know ourselves very well. Although treatable, depression can be hard to prevent once we are already melancholic. The best method to avoid another crisis after a chronic depression is to keep an eye open to its symptoms and its causes. and also get professional help whenever we feel like we need it.

Copyright Wendy Owen 2006

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