The miracle is not to fly in the air, or to walk on the water, but to walk on the earth.

~Chinese Proverb~

Blog posts : "depression"

A Reminder to Laugh, and Why

May 30, 2015

A gut-wrenching paroxysm of hilarity, or laughter, is one of the most pleasurable and healing of human experiences.

Fortunately, life’s ironies and absurdities can even penetrate dark clouds of despair, and the paralysis of anxiety, to give those who are troubled the respite of a good laugh.

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Why Music Is A Mood Lifter and Brain Tonic

April 17, 2015

Most of us do not need proof that listening to music can lift our mood. We simply accept what experience tells us.

That does not stop researchers from looking for reasons why music positively affects our feelings and perceptions. Scientists in Finland at the University of Helsinki, for instance, …

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Depression: A Non-Contagious Infectious Disease?

February 18, 2015

Some scientists are trying to solve the puzzle of depression by thinking outside the box. Turhan Canli, for instance, suggests that depression may be a non-contagious, infectious disease.

Canli, of Stony Brook University in New York, wonders whether an unknown pathogen(s) is the primary cause of …

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Short Winter Days and Holidays: Six Ways to Sidestep SAD

December 14, 2014

As the Christmas Carol goes, “It’s that time of year when the world falls in love,” but it is also the time of year when daylight savings time is over, daylight hours are shorter, and many people suffer from SAD or Seasonal Affective Disorder.

Our body’s circadian rhythm, or its 24 hour interna…

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Depression, Anxiety, and Overthinking

September 17, 2014

Overthinking is examining and reexamining negative emotions, thoughts, and memories. Both men and women can fall into a pattern of overthinking, although women tend to do it more often.

While standard worrywarts fret about the future, overthinkers circle their negative mental wagons around past occ…

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How Music Therapy Relieves Depression

August 4, 2014

We do not hear much about music therapy for depression, although studies showing it effectively relieves depressive symptoms have been done.

Music therapy involves a trained music therapist engaging in improvisational music-making with a client. It seems that the “active doing” of playing musical i…

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Why Depressed People Can Often Manage Practicing Yoga

May 6, 2014

There are many scientific reasons why yoga is good exercise choice for people with depression.

Practicing yoga helps us become mindful of the present, reduces stress, and helps balance the body’s hormones. Research suggests yoga increases the release of our feel-good neurotransmitters (e.g., seroto…

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Dreams and Depression: How the Depressed Brain Does Sleep

July 14, 2013

In The Twenty-Four Hour Mind, sleep researcher Rosalind D. Cartwright writes about dreams as a means of regulating distressing emotion.

She also shares what research has discovered about rapid eye movement (REM) sleep in people who are  depressed.

Cartwright believes that dreams, which occur duri…

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What the Body Needs To Produce Serotonin

May 15, 2013

Our physical, mental, emotional, and chemical well being are interrelated.

We can study these aspects of health separately and address problems in these areas separately, but whatever affects one area touches all the others, for good or ill.

Something that has an immediate impact on each aspect of hea…

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Vitamin D and Depression: Will Supplements Help?

April 26, 2013

We all know vitamin D is necessary for good health and that a lack of it can contribute to numerous health problems. Is depression one of those problems?

Research on the role vitamin D plays in mental health is growing. So far, studies have yielded links and tendencies between mood and levels of vita…

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Finding Light In the Darkness of Depression

April 1, 2013

Our experience of life has much to do with the way we see or perceive it. One of the reasons a poem can be life altering is that it may change our experience by changing our view or perception of it.

April is National Poetry Month, the perfect time to explore the positive and profound effect well-ch…

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Three Ways To Ditch Your Dark Depressive Thoughts

March 22, 2013

When you are caught in a depressive funk, it is important to get away from your thoughts.

Although these thoughts can seem inescapable, they’re not. We can escape them because our awareness is something we can control.

It takes effort to move our awareness where we want it, but with practice it gets…

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Exposure To Depression Affects Our Antidepressant Attitude

March 7, 2013

When we participate in a situation through observation, we are experiencing the situation vicariously. Usually there are emotional responses to what we are witnessing. It could be a football game or imagining ourselves climbing Mt. Everest as we read about an expedition.

Vicarious experience gives us…

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Depression-Diabetes Connection: What You Need To Know

March 2, 2013

If you have been diagnosed with depression or bipolar disorder, it is a good idea to be screened for diabetes. Similarly, should you have diabetes, you might think about getting checked for depression. The reason for this caution is that depression and diabetes are linked.

One connection between diab…

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Aaron Swartz, suicide, and the dilemmas of being above average

January 16, 2013

It seems an injustice to say that Aaron Swartz’s legal troubles caused his suicide.

Swartz was familiar with depression and his legal problems no doubt caused enormous stress. Stress exacerbates depression, and severe depression is agony. There is no better word for the experience than agony. Whe…

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Depression: Lincoln's Black Dog

November 11, 2012
How interesting that the movie Lincoln opened during the U.S. voting season because if Lincoln were running for President today he would never win. Imagine headlines during the campaign such as, “Lincoln Rumored to See a Psychiatrist.” A week later another might read, “Pharmacist admits filling anti…

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Suicide in the military: Operation prevention

September 16, 2012

The primary reason for death in the US Army is not vehicle accidents or combat; it is suicide.  

Army suicides rose 18% during the first six months of 2012, when compared to the same period in 2011. In the 26 year period of 1977 to 2003 there were 80% fewer suicides than between 2004 and 200…

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Attention remedy for fear: Feed your strengths, starve your weaknesses

August 18, 2012

Sometimes we become so aware of our weaknesses that we lose sight of our strengths. If it is true that we energize whatever we focus on, being attentive only to our weaknesses serves to make us weaker.  

Giving our attention is a gift to the receiver. You know this is true when another pe…

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Migraines and depression: Brain pain and emotional pain somehow linked

July 20, 2012

It seems that everything can be correlated to an increased risk of depression, but sometimes the increased risk is significant enough to warrant an alert. If you are a female and currently experience migraine headaches, or have a history of migraines, you are 40% more likely to develop sympt…

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Managing depression: Tips from a cantankerous counselor

July 6, 2012

No matter why you are depressed, it is certain that your ego mind will contribute as much mud as it is allowed to throw. It will sling thoughts such as:

1. I’m stupid
2. I don’t matter, nothing matters, nothing I do matters
3. I hate myself
4. Nobody cares, including me
5. I shouldn’t be angr…

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