Severe Depression Recovery: How to Find Relief

October 31, 2022

Recovering from severe depression can be difficult, especially if you have been dealing with symptoms of depression for a long time. While things can feel hopeless, it’s important to know that there are things you can do to relieve your depression symptoms. There is no “one size fits all” treatment for depression, but there are options that have helped many others manage their severe depression. Here are some tips on how to find relief from your severe depression.

Comply with your prescribed medication

If you have severe depression, chances are you have been prescribed medication to help ease your symptoms. The most common of these are SSRIs, but your doctor may prescribe another type of antidepressant depending on your symptoms and how you respond to medication. It is important to take your medication as prescribed. Antidepressants can take weeks or even several months before you start noticing an improvement in your symptoms, so don’t give up if it doesn’t feel like it’s working right away.

Additionally, if you start to feel better, continue taking your medication for the positive effects to continue. Work with your mental health clinician to determine what medication and dosage are right for you. Some medications may cause unwanted side effects, so you may have to try several types of antidepressants before you find one that works for you. 

Focus on a healthy diet and exercise

Physical health can also be a way to help your mental health. Be sure to focus on having a healthy diet and getting exercise. While it can be challenging to find the motivation to do things when you suffer from severe depression, even just a 10-minute walk three times a week can drastically improve your symptoms. A healthy diet can also help you fight off symptoms of depression, as feeding your body and brain the nutrients it needs will allow it to heal more quickly.

Talk about your thoughts & feelings

While it’s a typical coping mechanism to keep your feelings inside, this practice only increases symptoms of depression and anxiety. Your brain needs to process what you are going through by talking about it. Consider confiding in a trusted friend or family member. Journaling can also be a powerful tool to get your feelings and thoughts out of your mind and onto paper. How much you share about what you are going through and how you’re feeling is up to you. 

The important thing is to talk through your feelings to become more aware of how you feel. If you haven’t already, you may also consider talk therapy. In talk therapy, a licensed therapist will guide you through new ways of thinking that can help you discover new coping mechanisms to work through troubling thoughts.

Avoid smoking, drugs, and alcohol

Smoking, using drugs, and drinking can all increase symptoms of depression over time. While these things may make you feel better in the short term, tobacco, drugs, and alcohol are all highly addictive and will require more and more each time to get the same benefits. This can become dangerous and can lead to substance abuse or addiction.

Seek further depression treatment

It is important to keep in mind that most depression treatments take several weeks or longer before you may notice an improvement in your depression symptoms. You may feel stuck and hopeless if you have been treating your severe depression for a long time and have not seen an improvement in your symptoms. 

When your depression does not respond to multiple medications, you may have what is known as treatment-resistant depression. When traditional methods don’t reduce symptoms of depression, you may want to seek out alternative treatments for managing your severe depression.

Ketamine treatment is growing as an “off-label” treatment for treatment-resistant depression. It works by going through a series of intramuscular ketamine sessions with the help of a licensed medical provider. Many patients report feeling better almost immediately after their first session. Maintenance treatments may be required after the initial round of treatment but can be done infrequently if depression symptoms respond well.

Ketamine treatment for severe depression symptoms

If you’re considering using ketamine treatment to manage your severe depression symptoms, you need a provider you can trust. Klarisana is a multi-location mental health clinic dedicated to helping patients find ways to manage their treatment-resistant severe depression since 2014. Our providers will work with you to determine if ketamine therapy is right for you and get you started on a plan to manage your mental health. Get in touch with us to get started on your journey toward a happier life.

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