Lessening of Depression

Medications can be very helpful for reducing the symptoms of depression in some people, particularly in cases of moderate to severe depression. Often a combination of psychotherapy and medications is the best course of treatment.

Can you get rid of depression?
While depression can be treated, and symptoms can be alleviated, depression cannot be “cured.” Instead, remission is the goal. There’s no universally accepted definition of remission, as it varies for each person. People may still have symptoms or impaired functioning with remission.
What is the most effective way to treat depression?
Medications and psychotherapy are effective for most people with depression. Your primary care doctor or psychiatrist can prescribe medications to relieve symptoms. However, many people with depression also benefit from seeing a psychiatrist, psychologist, or other mental health professional.
Are there different levels of depression?
Types of Depression
  • Major Depression.
  • Persistent Depressive Disorder.
  • Bipolar Disorder.
  • Seasonal Affective Disorder (SAD)
  • Psychotic Depression.
  • Peripartum (Postpartum) Depression.
  • Premenstrual Dysphoric Disorder (PMDD)
  • ‘Situational’ Depression.
What are the 4 major causes of depression?
  • Abuse. Physical, sexual, or emotional abuse can make you more vulnerable to depression later in life.
  • Age. People who are elderly are at higher risk of depression. …
  • Certain medications. …
  • Conflict. …
  • Death or a loss. …
  • Gender. …
  • Genes. …
  • Major events.
What does the Bible say About depression?
“The Lord himself goes before you and will be with you; he will never leave you nor forsake you. Do not be afraid; do not be discouraged.” The Good News: While depression can make you feel lonely, God is still there with you.
What is the last stage of depression?
Persistent depressive disorder is depression that lasts for two years or more. It’s also called dysthymia or chronic depression. Persistent depression might not feel as intense as major depression, but it can still strain relationships and make daily tasks difficult.
What is the main cause of depression?
Rather, there are many possible causes of depression, including faulty mood regulation by the brain, genetic vulnerability, stressful life events, medications, and medical problems. It’s believed that several of these forces interact to bring on depression.
Who’s at risk of depression?
Age. Major depression is most likely to affect people between the ages of 45 and 65. “People in middle age are at the top of the bell curve for depression, but the people at each end of the curve, the very young and very old, may be at higher risk for severe depression,” says Walch.
What defines a depression?
Overview. Depression is a mood disorder that causes a persistent feeling of sadness and loss of interest. Also called a major depressive disorder or clinical depression, it affects how you feel, think and behave and can lead to a variety of emotional and physical problems.
What is the most common form of depression?
Major Depression: This is the most well-known type of depression. When people experience major depression, or major depressive disorder (MDD), there is a depressed mood or loss of interest or pleasure in daily activities.
How does depression affect synapses?
Basic and clinical studies demonstrate that depression is associated with reduced size of brain regions that regulate mood and cognition, including the prefrontal cortex and the hippocampus, and decreased neuronal synapses in these areas.
What happens in the brain during the depression?

Cortisol and the amygdala.

The influx of cortisol triggered by depression also causes the amygdala to enlarge. This is a part of the brain associated with emotional responses. When it becomes larger and more active, it causes sleep disturbances, changes in activity levels, and changes in other hormones.

Prolonged, elevated cortisol levels in animals are also shown to cause atrophy in the hippocampus and hypertrophy in the amygdala, largely through changes in dendritic remodeling. These structural changes may contribute to deficits inappropriate feedback onto the HPA axis.
How does cortisol affect the amygdala?

Cortisol Can Trigger Stem Cells to Malfunction

The “stress hormone” cortisol is believed to create a domino effect that hardwires pathways between the hippocampus and amygdala in a way that might create a vicious cycle by creating a brain that becomes predisposed to be in a constant state of fight-or-flight.

The Hypothalamic-Pituitary-Cortisol System in Depression. The hypothalamic-pituitary-cortisol hypothesis of depression postulates that abnormalities in the cortisol response to stress may underlie depression. In response to stress, which is perceived by the brain cortex and the amygdala and transmitted to the hypothalamus, corticotropin-releasing hormone (CRH) is released, inducing the anterior pituitary gland to secrete corticotropin into the bloodstream. Corticotropin stimulates the adrenal cortexes to secrete the glucocorticoid hormone cortisol. The red lines show that cortisol, in turn, induces feedback inhibition in the hypothalamus and the pituitary, suppressing the production of CRH and corticotropin, respectively. Findings in patients with depression that support the hypothalamic-pituitary-cortisol hypothesis include the following: cortisol levels are sometimes increased in severe depression, the size of the anterior pituitary and adrenal cortex is increased, and CRH levels in the cerebrospinal fluid and CRH expression in the limbic brain regions are increased. Hippocampal size and the numbers of neurons and glia are decreased, possibly reflecting reduced neurogenesis due to elevated cortisol levels or due to reduced brain-derived neurotrophic factor.

Massage for Depression

Stress is an inevitable part of life. It is almost impossible to take away all the stress and anxiety we may feel on a day-to-day basis. Research suggests that more than 90 percent of illness results from stress alone. Decreasing physical and emotional stress is optimal to improving overall health and well-being.

A 60-minute massage can lower cortisol, a hormone that’s produced in response to stress, by an average of 30 percent. And when cortisol levels decline, serotonin — one of the body’s anti-pain mechanisms — increases by an average of 28 percent after receiving a massage. By lowering cortisol and increasing serotonin, you’re boosting your body’s ability to fight off pain, anxiety and feelings of sadness.

The emotional balance massage provides can be just as vital and valuable as the physical benefits. Massage provides a safe and nurturing place for individuals to relax, refocus and find clarity. It can increase awareness of the mind-body connection. Massage can generate confidence and enhance self-image and self-worth.

Safe nurturing touch helps fulfill the need for human contacts, such as the comforting touch we once received at birth. For some, massage is the only caring touch they may receive. Massage can be considered an hour-long hug, providing you with a nurturing safe place to rest physically and emotionally.

The Benefits of Massage for Depression

Why is massage good for mental health?
Massage therapy can be an effective treatment by elevating neurotransmitters associated with lowering anxiety and decreasing hormones associated with increasing anxiety.
Do massages help with anxiety?
Therapeutic massage can help reduce muscle tension, which is why it may help relieve some symptoms that are associated with stress and anxiety.
How does massage reduce stress?
Massage helps to decrease stress by lowering the heart rate, relaxing muscles, and releasing endorphins. Massage helps to decrease stress by lowering the heart rate. Massage increases the temperature in the body and promotes relaxation. When the body relaxes, the heart rate is reduced.
What are the effects of massage?
Some of the physical benefits of massage and myotherapy include:
  • reduced muscle tension.
  • improved circulation.
  • stimulation of the lymphatic system.
  • reduction of stress hormones.
  • relaxation.
  • increased joint mobility and flexibility.
  • improved skin tone.
  • improved recovery of soft tissue injuries.
Can massage release emotions?
In general, many studies and articles note that emotions are indeed released during a massage, but often conveniently skip over exactly how this occurs. What we do seem to know, is this… It all comes down to tissue memory. It’s largely undisputed that this exists due to research that shows how muscles hold memory.
What are the 5 benefits of massage?
  • Lower stress. The long-term effects of stress can take emotional and physical tolls. …
  • Increase immune function. …
  • Boost mental health and wellness. …
  • Manage pain. …
  • Improve physical fitness.
What happens to your brain during the massage?
Massage is known to stimulate serotonin and dopamine, improve brain wave activity as well as the quality of sleep, and activate parasympathetic response.
Is it normal to cry after a massage?
When you receive a massage, the muscles and tissues release on an emotional level in much the same way they release physical tension. This letting go manifests in many forms — an audible sigh, laughter, muscle twitching, or even tears.
Why do I feel bad after a massage?
Massage pushes and moves this fluid around causing the body to require more water to flush out and process the releasing toxins. … You may experience a feeling of nausea, headache, or flu-like symptoms as your body struggles to process the increased amount of metabolic waste.
What should I do after the massage?
9 ways to relieve soreness
  1. Stay hydrated. Drink plenty of water before and after your massage. …
  2. Stretch it out. Following your massage, do a few gentle stretches on your own. …
  3. Heat therapy. Warm your body up to promote relaxation. …
  4. Essential oils. …
  5. Topical treatment. …
  6. Herbal relief. …
  7. Rest. …
  8. Guided meditation.
Does massage actually work?
Massage has been found to be effective for patients with these conditions: low back pain, cancer, heart bypass surgery, anxiety, migraines, carpal tunnel syndrome, and high blood pressure. Researchers at Ohio State University tested the benefits of massage.
Is it good to massage your brain?
Massage Improves Memory and Concentration

Not only can massage promote efficient thinking, but it can also improve memory. Tight neck and shoulder muscles often limit the circulation to the brain, which consequently does not support memory or concentration.
Why do massages hurt?
It’s the massage many thinks has to hurt in order to do any good at all. Often, the pain associated with this type of massage comes from the release of chronic muscle tension. … If the therapist works too deep, it can damage the tissue, which can cause the pain.
Why do I feel so tired after a massage?
As a result of releasing the tension, feeling tired or groggy can be a factor after your deep tissue massage. Releasing tension in the body can reduce stress, whether physically, mentally, or both, yet these symptoms shouldn’t last longer than a good night’s rest after your session.
What is Somato’s emotional release massage?
SomatoEmotional Release® is a manual therapy process developed by Dr. Upledger that expands on the core principles of CranioSacral Therapy to help rid the body of the residual effects of past trauma and negative emotional experiences.
Why does pressing on sore muscles feel good?
It feels great not only because the pain is triggering a release of endorphins, but also because circulation is increasing and inflammation from the knot is being released.
Do muscle knots hold toxins?
Trigger points accumulate inside muscle due to a build-up of toxins and a lack of oxygen and blood flow. When applying pressure to the trigger point the toxins break down and blood flow and oxygen and able to flow into that space.
Why do I feel cold after a massage?
Our basal body temperature is the lowest temperature attained during rest and is usually lowest during sleep. However, when you are incredibly relaxed during a massage, you can start to feel cold due to the 0.2-0.5 degree Celsius drop that is happening in your body.
Why is my pee yellow after a massage?
The more yellow or dark-colored it is, the most dehydrated you are. If you are drinking enough water, your urine should be clear. Also, massage has a diuretic effect, meaning it causes increased passing of urine.
How long do the effects of a massage last?
Generally speaking, you may feel sore for a couple of days after the massage, which is normal. Beyond that, the benefits may last a couple of days to an entire week. There are some things you can do to help the relaxing, stress-relieving benefits last for as long as possible.
How does massage improve mood?
Massage increases the secretion of endorphins, dopamine, and serotonin, and reduces the levels of stress hormones, such as cortisol, epinephrine, and norepinephrine, which can reduce anxiety, fatigue, stress, and physical and mental strain.
Are foot massages good for your brain?
But how does massage do all that? It activates your nervous system, which increases feel-good brain chemicals like endorphins. In one study, people who got foot massages after surgery to remove their appendix had less pain and used fewer painkillers.

When you ask exactly how massage therapy works to benefit people with depression, the most accurate answer is “we don’t yet know.”

But that’s not to say the benefits aren’t real, and some, like Christopher Moyer, Ph.D. and assistant professor of psychology at the University of Wisconsin–Stout, posit that massage therapy may work in similar ways as psychotherapy. “The size and effect of massage therapy on trait anxiety and depression is virtually the same as that routinely found in the research studies of psychotherapy for those same conditions,” he explains. “Typically, both take place in a private setting and are based on a ‘50-minute hour’ for the length of the session. Repeated sessions on a weekly schedule—or similar—would be a traditional or common pattern when the goal is long-term reduction of anxiety or depression.”

The other striking similarity is that both are dependent on an interpersonal relationship founded on trust. “Some psychotherapy researchers think that the existence of the trusting relationship—sometimes referred to as the therapeutic bond, or as the working alliance—is the most important component of psychotherapy’s effectiveness,” Moyer says. “And the same may also be true for massage therapy, though this is something that needs to be researched.”

Remember, too, that depression isn’t just mental health issues—some of the symptoms manifest physically, too. “Depression is considered a mental illness, but one feels it in the body as well, a sense of heaviness in the corporeal,” says Alice Sanvito, a massage therapist and owner of Massage-St. Louis in St. Louis, Missouri. “The physical experience of massage can change the physical sensation of heaviness to something lighter and can restore the feeling of living in one’s body again instead of being lost in one’s head.”

Moyer suggests something similar. “It’s tempting to say that yes, psychotherapy ought to have the greater potential to help because it ought to provide the person with skills and insight that reduce anxiety and depression, and that helps the person avoid them in the future,” he explains. “And who is to say that massage therapy doesn’t do something similar to that? It’s possible that receiving massage therapy gives a person a kind of insight, in that it reeducates the person as to how their body and mind ought to feel when they are relaxed, healthy, less anxious and less depressed.”

There’s also the potential that—similar to chronic pain—some of the value of massage therapy for people with depression comes from interrupting the pattern of symptoms on a regular basis. “Each time one interrupts the pattern and experiences calm, it’s easier to remember what it’s like to live in a more normal state, gives one hope that it is possible,” Sanvito suggests.

The problem, however, is defining what regular means. Although research seems to suggest that more than one massage therapy session is more beneficial for people dealing with depression, beyond that, the information available gets fuzzier. “We do not yet have clear information on how many sessions of massage therapy, or in what pattern or frequency, are optimal or necessary,” Moyer explains. “Weekly sessions would be a good place to start. Then, depending on the response to treatment, that schedule could be adjusted as deemed necessary.

Depression and Illegal Drugs

While several types of bodywork can be helpful adjuncts to a cocaine recovery program, the following two stand out:

  1. Manual Lymphatic Drainage – As part of the natural detoxification process, the lymphatic system cleanses the body’s connective tissue of foreign substances to strengthen immune function. Although cocaine itself is usually metabolized by the body quickly, performing lymphatic drainage massage enhances an addict’s immunity. This immune system advantage eases the body’s transition to functioning without cocaine.
  2. Swedish Massage – Long, nurturing effleurage strokes can ground a person recovering from cocaine addiction. Because this Swedish massage technique has been shown to slow and calm the central nervous system, it is particularly valuable when a person’s body is trying to readjust to life without cocaine’s stimulatory effects.

Due to this drug’s influence on the body, cocaine addiction is a very dangerous problem. Because of the potential for serious physical and psychological problems being triggered during cocaine withdrawal, bodyworkers are urged to work together with other professionals.

Understanding the physical and psychological problems associated with cocaine abuse and the challenges of withdrawal better prepares bodyworkers to work with this population. Since providing comfort to people who are at their most vulnerable is one of the most satisfying experiences a bodyworker can have, helping cocaine addicts recover is ultimately rewarding.

How long does an addict’s brain need to be drug-free before they are able to feel natural pleasures again?
Many medical professionals suggest ninety days as a general estimate for dopamine recovery. However, the damage from drugs can last longer, requiring a year or longer for dopamine levels and brain cells to recover.
Does your brain ever recover from drugs?
The good news is that your brain can heal itself when you stop using drugs, but you must create the right conditions to do so. When you do, the brain can re-establish its chemical balance. Once balanced, your brain can begin to regain control of your impulses, emotions, memory, thinking patterns, and mental health.
How long does it take for the brain chemistry to return to normal?
The new research shows that it takes at least two weeks for the brain to start returning to normal, so this is the point at which the alcohol recovery timeline begins. Until the brain has recovered, it is less able to suppress the urge to drink.
What are omega-3s?

Omega-3s are a family of essential fatty acids that play important roles in your body and may provide a number of health benefits.

As your body cannot produce them on its own, you must get them from your diet.

The three most important types are ALA (alpha-linolenic acid), DHA (docosahexaenoic acid), and EPA (eicosapentaenoic acid). ALA is mainly found in plants, while DHA and EPA occur mostly in animal foods and algae.

Common foods that are high in omega-3 fatty acids include fatty fish, fish oils, flax seeds, chia seeds, flaxseed oil, and walnuts.

For people who do not eat much of these foods, an omega-3 supplement, such as fish oil or algal oil, is often recommended.

What are examples of omega-3 fatty acids?
Omega-3 fatty acids are found in foods, such as fish and flaxseed, and in dietary supplements, such as fish oil. The three main omega-3 fatty acids are alpha-linolenic acid (ALA), eicosapentaenoic acid (EPA), and docosahexaenoic acid (DHA). ALA is found mainly in plant oils such as flaxseed, soybean, and canola oils.
What type of Omega 3 is best?
The best source of omega-3 fatty acids DHA and EPA is fish. Some varieties deliver a higher dose than others. Top choices are salmon, mackerel, herring, lake trout, sardines, anchovies, and tuna. The American Heart Association recommends at least two servings a week of fish.



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Therapeutic Swedish Massage, Sports Massage Therapy in Santa Barbara, Goleta


*Disclaimer: This information is not intended to be a substitute for professional medical advice. You should not use this information to diagnose or treat a health problem or disease without consulting with a qualified healthcare provider.
Please consult your healthcare provider with any questions or concerns you may have regarding your condition.
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