Does Dad’s Depression Affect His Children?
“Real men don’t cry.” That unhealthy stereotype can be particularly detrimental to men with a psychiatric condition. Since men learn from a young age to bottle up their emotions, they are far less likely than women to seek treatment for a mental illness. This is especially true of depression since women are diagnosed with the complaint more frequently than men.
Major depressive disorder affects six million men each year in America and many millions more will choose to tough it out rather than admitting they need help.
Sadly, those who suffer from depression may never know how their ailment influences other people in their life. A recent study shows that depression in fathers has a direct effect on the behavioral problems of their adolescent children. This should come as a wake-up call to the multitude of men who are attempting to manage their symptoms by white-knuckling their way through the pain.
Since depression can have a negative influence on the entire family, it is time for men to step up and get help. Delaying treatment for depression can have significant personal, interpersonal, occupational and social consequences.
If you are struggling with symptoms of depression, here are nine proven strategies that can help you:
1. Know Your Type
Did you know that there are different types of depression? Knowing your type can help reduce stigma, provide hope and guide treatment.
2. Stress Less
It is easy to become overwhelmed in our fast-paced society. To reduce stress, try meditation, yoga or other relaxation techniques.
3. Quality Sleep
Insufficient and inconsistent sleep can increase irritability, moodiness and poor judgment. To remain at the top of your game, it is recommended that you get between 7-9 hours of sleep each night.
4. Step into the Light
Daily exposure to appropriate levels of sunlight can boost serotonin and vitamin D3 levels which can improve your mood.
5. Get Moving
Exercise is the most important thing you can do when feeling depressed. Exercising releases “feel good” chemicals in your brain that can promote a sense of well-being.
6. Eat Good Mood Food
Good mood foods like lean protein, raw spinach and walnuts contain bliss-enhancing nutrients which can elevate your mood.
7. Kill Your ANTs
ANTs are the Automatic Negative Thoughts that pop into your head, causing you to get upset or depressed. Once you identify an ANT, jot it down, identify it and then kill it by writing a more realistic version of the same thought.
8. Talk it Out
Most men aren’t comfortable talking about their feelings. However, opening up about personal struggles can have big benefits for those who deal with depression. Whether in a support group or with a therapist, talking it out can reduce your sense of isolation and provide relief from your symptoms.
9. Get a Brain Image
Depression is not the consequence of a character flaw or personal weakness, it is the result of biological problems in the brain that can be balanced. By looking at our patient’s brain function through brain SPECT imaging, we can identify the underlying brain biology of a person’s depressive systems, allowing us to tailor a treatment plan to begin the healing process.
At Amen Clinics, we understand that depression is not a simple disorder with a one-size-fits-all solution. We have helped tens of thousands of people with depression from all over the world and can help you, too. Call us today at 888-288-9834 or visit our website to schedule an appointment.