Mental Health Awareness Day

Today October 11, is national mental health screening day. This is a subject that comes close to my heart as I personally have walked a mental health journey. Depression isn’t easy. Mental illness isn’t easy. There are several different types of clinical depression. Major depression is lower mood levels as well as loss of pleasure that last over several weeks and interferes with one’s normal functioning and can include physical symptoms. Dysthymia, often called melancholy, is a less severe form of depression that often lasts for several years that include bouts of feeling normal. Bipolar disorder is severe depression alternating with elation called mania. Seasonal Affective Disorder is depression caused as a result of fewer daylight hours. Also called the winter blues. It can be severe. Psychotic depression is when depression and hallucinations and delusions occur at the same time.The sufferer loses touch with reality. You can take a several tests: www.mentalhealthscreening.org

What are some causes of depression? Some of the main causes are biology, genetics, gender, age, health conditions, trauma, grief, changes, stressful events, drugs, and substance abuse. Another cause of depression, which you won’t find scientifically documented, is sin. If there is sin in one’s life this can cause the depression. 1 Timothy 1:19 In my personal battle with depression a lot of it is the fight to embrace Phil. 4:8&9 In God’s Word, He commands us to “take every thought captive to the obedience of Christ”. Yes, change, stressful events, genetics, grief, and trauma have also been key components but embracing God’s Word and believing in faith has been the biggest help.

Let’s look at some helps for depression. PRAY! The community of Christian believers is priceless. Here are a few more helps.

  • Talk to one person about your feelings.
  • Help someone else by volunteering.
  • Have lunch or coffee with a friend.
  • Ask a loved one to check in with you regularly.
  • Accompany someone to the movies, a concert, or a small get-together.
  • Call or email an old friend.
  • Go for a walk with a workout buddy.
  • Schedule a weekly dinner date.
  • Meet new people by taking a class or joining a club.
  • Confide in a counselor, therapist, or clergy member.

Remember that depression is serious! It does not normally go away by its self. Remember that each person’s symptoms and triggers and cure will look differently.

For further info:

http://www.adaa.org

http://www.emedicinehealth.com/depression/article_em.htm

http://www.focusonthefamily.com/marriage/facing_crisis/dealing_with_depression/depression_reject_the_guilt_embrace_the_cure.aspx

http://www.cbn.com/spirituallife/cbnTeachingSheets/Depression.aspx

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