I am exhausted from trying to be stronger than I feel…..”
“Sleep just isn’t sleep anymore, it’s an escape…..”
“No amount of sleep could cure the tiredness I feel…….”
“I’ll be alright, one day, someday, just not today……….”
And many more thoughts, emotions, feelings, fears. The unspoken truth, that ultimately drags a person into a world in which there is no end to despair, loneliness, distress, agony, pain, that we all in our common language call DEPRESSION.
This time I am beginning with a series of mental health conditions and the role of physiotherapy to overcome them. We all take care of our physical and physiological health, caring about your body’s physiology is a very good thing indeed but, ever thought of brain going through the same? As rightly said by my teacher, brain also needs food just the way body needs. We never forget eating food thrice a day, that’s absolutely normal, we feed our body to enable it to work and if at all we fall sick, we take care of it quite well. Why don’t we ever think about brain as a part of our body? I think it has equal right to fall sick after overuse, trauma, and deficiencies just like our body do. Physical dysfunction around us is socially acceptable. Why not a mental dysfunction? This article will shed some light on the mental health issue known as depression and how physiotherapy is helping people overcome this disorders.
Treat now your Depression with all time Best Physiotherapy Techniques and Physiotherapist Advice
Depression is a type of mood disorder which results in feeling of misery, despondency, dejection. A state of prolonged sadness which creates a feeling of heavy heartedness and discouragement. The symptoms may appear as feeling of sadness, anxiety, low energy, fatigue, restlessness, irritability, difficulty in decision making, lack of focus and concentration, headaches, cramps, poor digestion, lack of interest and suicidal thoughts in severe cases. Depression may occur due to some personal and family issues, side effects of certain medications, excessive workload and stress or major life changes.
We all know that the common treatment protocol for depression till now is medications, psychological treatments, maybe some counselling sessions or psychotherapy and sometimes electric shock treatment. Can we think of some other alternatives? Which are drug-free, pain-free and involves full participation of the person. Here, physiotherapy might make the things easier. Let’s see how.
Top Physiotherapy Techniques and Physiotherapist Advice to Lower your Depression
Several hypothesis are made about physical activity and mental health. Physical activity release neurotransmitters, the body releases chemicals called endorphin under physical stress which help relieving pain and stress. There occurs release of some other substances like dopamine, serotonin, which plays an important role in mood regulation. Exercise cause increase in blood circulation causing proper oxygen supply and nutrient supply to the blood which results in mood regulation.
Physical activities prescribed by a physiotherapist is associated with improvement in the quality of life. It improves the physical and cognitive functions boosting up the confidence and self-esteem. Physiotherapist emphasizes on improving muscle strength, flexibility, cardiovascular endurance, maintaining body weight, body mass index, reducing the chances of falls. The exercise prescription to the person with depression is as follows, however the major exercise prescribed in depression are aerobic exercises and strength training.
Deep breathing exercises
Deep breathing exercises helps in relaxation. Can be done in a sitting position. Relax your body completely, relax shoulders, take a deep breath, inhale and exhale through nose. This can also be done by exhaling through mouth (pursed lips).
Muscle flexibility exercises
The flexibility exercises includes stretching of muscles. It enhances the extensible of muscles and maintains the normal range of motion of major joints in the body. These exercises can be done very easily on your own also called as the Self- Stretching exercises.
Endurance is the ability to withstand fatigue and stress. It enhances the ability of a person to remain active. Aerobic and anaerobic exercises help maintain the muscle endurance, cardiovascular endurance and respiratory endurance as well.
Relaxations techniques are very useful for the peace of mind. It helps a person to effectively combat stress. These techniques involves meditation, yoga, deep breathing.
Muscle strengthening exercises are important to overcome body weaknesses. These are done with an external resistance provided while performing exercises. It strengthens the muscles and joints and help relieve body pain and overcome certain degenerative changes in the body. Causing an increased blood circulation and blood pressure regulation. It helps to maintain metabolism in the body. It helps improve mood and reduce depression, especially in older adults, research from Harvard University
These exercises improve the joint motion and function. It maintains joint range of motion. These exercises can be used as a warm up.
Hydrotherapy means exercising in water. This is a beneficial way of physical activity as water’s property of buoyancy help put less impact on joints, water provides resistance in all directions to the body helping in muscle strengthening. Under water exercises are beneficial for improving respiratory function.
Adding all these forms of physical activities to your routine will help you improve the quality of life. Distracting yourself from negative thoughts, stress and overthinking is the aim of treating a person suffering from depression. Engaging yourself in such activities helps improve overall fitness, giving a major impact on your mind along with the other parts of the body. Also, it prevents the re-occurrence of such mental disorders by enhancing the secretion of certain hormones and chemicals in the body which improves mental health, emotions, thoughts and mental activities.
Find a better way to deal with such issues in life, other than any of the high dose pills and electronic machines. Physical activity always increase your self-esteem and self-confidence as it is a kind of self-management which enables you to assess yourself on your own, work on yourself on your own and see the difference. This fact is not yet known by many of us about the ability of physiotherapy to cure mental diseases along with physical. I hope after reading this article, you can have a fair idea about the role of physiotherapists in improving mental health along with physical. If you associate yourself in anyway with this article, talk to your physiotherapist and get a prescribed exercise protocol.
Work for your own mental well-being.