Depression is a mental health disorder that can suck the life out of you and the people around you. The negative social effects can cause the sufferer to dive deeper into the cognitive disorder as they think about how unpleasant their moods can be. Although treatment is available, not everyone has access to the expensive medications that often cause a mental fog. If that’s you, trying to avoid depression triggers can be a positive solution. Here are three potential depression triggers that you can control.
Don’t Go Down the Rabbit Hole
Those that suffer from depression know that it can start with just a thought. Most of us spend a lot of time thinking to ourselves and never allowing rational thoughts to combat negative thinking. This can cause a psychological downward spiral to occur. Once there it’s almost as if we are in “the sunken place” or the basement of our consciousness and we are unable to function because of it. This place leaves us feeling lost, paralyzed, and hopeless. If we are honest with ourselves, we can tell when we are about to enter a dark cave of solidarity and one-way thinking. Why go there? You can make a decision not to dwell on negative thoughts.
Whatever is going on may be factual — maybe you did gain weight, maybe your parent will pass, or maybe you will fail your professional exam. Truth be told, it’s not the end of the world. That’s harsh, I know. However, everyone gains weight and fails exams, just try again. People obtain degrees every year, but once they have them, no one knows it took them 10 years to get it. No one knows that they pass by the skin of their teeth. It’s also better to dwell on the time you have with your parents or sick relatives than it is to dwell on their earthly exit. There were times that I thought myself into a deep, dark, mental fit because I was scared my mom would die, but once I came out of it, I realized I never wanted to go there again. Now I’m able to feel its preliminary attack and I make a decision not to go down the dark rabbit hole.
Limit Secondhand Smoke
There’s a chance that you or someone you know smokes on a daily basis. According to research, smokers are addicted to the nicotine in cigarettes and have a hard time quitting, despite knowledge of the harmful effects. Even if you don’t smoke, second-hand smoke is still as dangerous. Just being in the presence of someone who is actively smoking has its consequences. Breathing in someone else’s smoke has been linked to cancer and other physical health conditions. What many people don’t know is that second-hand smoke is substantially linked to depression and other cognitive disorders.
The Department of Epidemiology and Public Health at University College London conducted a study that included over 5,500 non-smokers. Their research followed them for a span of six years. At the end of the six years, the data were analyzed, and they found that “14.5 percent of the individuals were found to be suffering from psychological distress”. The people that were part of this study were initially tested for their exposure to smoke. They were also selected based on their non-existent history of mental disorder. Lastly, at the end of this study, they were still non-smokers and some of them had been admitted to the hospital for mental health disorders such as depression, schizophrenia, and delirium due to their continual exposure to secondhand smoke. Another study found links to lower levels of a brain chemical called dopamine that is responsible for happiness. The toxins in the cigarette smoke cause disruptions in the brain and blocks dopamine from being effective causing mood swings.
Limit your social activities with people that smoke. If you’re a smoker, it’s time to get into a program that will help you quit. If you really want to stay mentally healthy, make the decision to stop. There’s another way smoking can be dangerous, it’s called thirdhand smoke. This means that the residue from smoking can get stuck on your clothing and enter your skin. This causes DNA damage and contributes to mental health disorders as well.
Change Your Occupation
Everyone knows people have the tendency to be rude and mean. They are the cause of bullying and they ultimately cause depression in depression-prone individuals. Those who are susceptible to depression should limit their interaction with those who may be triggering negative moods. People in the service industry occupations are at the most risk. They have to endure unsatisfied customers yelling, cursing, and passing on their angry attitudes to employees who are just trying to help. Studies show that people in low waged jobs and/or high stressed jobs can suffer from poor mental health and bring on depression. It may be best to find work elsewhere.
“Most people who work for tips experience regular lulls and peaks in their income, and the uncertainty can cause enough stress to make the worker suffer from anxiety and depression,” licensed mental health counselor GinaMarie Guarino told Healthline.
Try a job that doesn’t rely on people being satisfied with your service. Jobs where you assist other employees may offer a better outcome. This way you only have to work with a few people and you have the company backing for hostile environments in case things go awry.
Depression can be a time-consuming health condition, but it is one that can be prevented. Releasing and disengaging in depressive triggers will contribute to a happier lifestyle and a more positive social identity. You don’t have to let depression rule you. Instead, you can live life depression free.