Frequently Asked Questions About Depression And Genetics

I was diagnosed with depression in the 80s. Back then, many people who grew up in the foster care system like me had the same mental health condition (or worse), although the causes were always different. Some had been emotionally or sexually abused by their parents, foster parents, or other kids in the system. Others wanted to reunite with their family so much, so they ended up getting depressed after realizing that it was no longer possible due to their parents’ issues (typically with substance abuse, unemployment, or criminal activities).

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In my case, I lost hope in getting adopted. I was already 14 years old at the time, you see. Even around that time, the couples wishing to adopt foster children wanted babies or toddlers. That way, they had no recollection of their biological family or would try to look for them. I was lucky that I had never been sexually abused by any of my foster families in the past, but no one chose me to be their foster kid since I was 11 years old. While most of the other children would receive gifts from their foster families, I would get a stuffed toy from the foster home administrators.

However, I got the surprise of my life when my biological father visited me one day. I never knew him before; my mother used to tell me that he was already dead. But it turned out that she merely hid me from him out of spite, and he found out about me because one of the foster home sponsors happened to be his friend. What a small world, right?

Long story short, my biological father adopted me, gave me a wonderful home, sent me to the best school, and gave me everything I could ever ask for and more.

Having A Kid With Similar Issues

I went on to have a happy life. I met an incredible man in college, and we eventually got married. When I had Mary, our firstborn, I felt like my life was already complete. I had a stable job, while my husband’s business was already successful, so I knew that Mary would grow up with all the luxury in the world, unlike me.

When Mary became a teenager, though, I noticed a behavioral shift in her. She said no to everything, including eating or sleeping on time. Because of that, she grew thin and was always late for school. I asked Mary what’s wrong, but she would not say a thing. I thought back to the last few months, but I could not think of anything that could upset Mary this bad. Thus, it made me wonder if I somehow passed my depression to her.

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How do genetics play a role in depression? 

Research reveals that depression can be passed down to the children of individuals who have been diagnosed with this mental disorder.

Can mental health be genetic? 

According to scientists, there is a 40% chance of a mental disorder being caused by genetics. 

What are the four major causes of depression? 

  • Genetics
  • Traumatic situations
  • Abuse
  • Other illnesses

Does depression count as a disability? 

Yes, depression counts as a disability.

Does depression give you memory loss? 

Depression may give you memory loss, given that it reduces the gray matter in the brain and makes it age faster than usual.

How does depression affect intelligence? 

Depression affects intelligence by hampering your brain’s executive functions. Thus, instead of thinking simply and fixing your problems, you feel like that is not possible at all.

Does depression cause Alzheimer’s? 

It does not always happen, but depression can cause Alzheimer’s disease. The reason is that mental disorder brings forth cognitive decline. The worse it gets, the faster your brain function decreases.

Do pharmacists recommend Prevagen? 

Yes, pharmacists genuinely recommend Prevagen as a memory-boosting drug.

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What is the best supplement for the brain? 

Fish oil is one of the best supplements for the brain. It contains omega-3 fatty acids, among others, which are known to improve memory and thinking skills.

What improves memory? 

  • Consume less sugary foods and beverages. According to studies, people who eat more sweets than usual have reduced brain volume and poor memory.
  • Supplement your diet with fish oil. DH and EPA are two omega-3 fatty acids that reduce body inflammation, which possibly promotes cognitive decline.
  • Relax and meditate as often as possible. Doing so expands your brain’s gray matter, which also boosts your memory.
  • Make sure that you don’t become obese. Obesity is strongly linked to Alzheimer’s – a disease that worsens your memory progressively.
  • Try to get enough sleep so that your cognitive function will not suffer. The idea is that sleeping at night is always much better than sleeping during the day.
  • Avoid getting drunk all the time. Alcohol is practically toxic for the brain, so it affects your cognitive function negatively.

How do I know if I’m getting dementia? 

  • You are losing your memory more and more.
  • You find it challenging to focus on simple tasks.
  • You get confused about activities that you have always done your entire life.
  • You feel frustrated when you keep forgetting things and become irritable.

What are the seven stages of dementia? 

  • No Impairment: There are no cognitive issues at this point yet.
  • Very Mild Decline: They forget where they have placed various items at home.
  • Mild Decline: The individual cannot remember acquaintances’ names or converse without finding the right words.
  • Moderate Decline: They experience mild memory loss, to the extent that they cannot do basic math or remember their life history.
  • Moderately Severe Decline: The person often feels confused and forgets even their personal details.
  • Severe Decline: They hardly know their loved ones or themselves.
  • Very Severe Decline: It typically occurs when the individual is close to death. They can no longer talk coherently or even remember to chew their food.
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Does stress cause dementia?

Yes, stress causes dementia, among other mental disorders.

Final Thoughts

Accepting that your child has depression is not a walk in the park, especially when you have assumed that their life will be much different from yours. When we brought Mary to a child psychologist, we found out that she felt depressed because kids bullied her. When I asked the mental health professional if it could be because of genetics, she said it was possible, but it was tough to prove that. Regardless of the cause of depression, though, what mattered was making Mary feel loved and wanted so that her sense of self would improve, and the bullies wouldn’t affect her so much in the long run.

Frequently Asked Questions About Treatment Plan For Depression

Perhaps the reason why you are reading this article is that you find yourself emotionally and mentally unstable. That is okay. You do not have to be scared or ashamed to talk about it. You are not alone with your mental health struggle because many people are dealing with the same things as you. Whether the condition is mild, moderate, or severe, all the symptoms associated with depression entirely sucks.

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In all honesty, depression can be a lot damaging than you can imagine. You can never compare it to sadness and feeling blue because the reason behind it lies in the changes in your brain chemicals. Depression ruins your ability to socialize, maintain relationships with people, improve cognitive function, and care for yourself. The mental health condition changes your thoughts, feelings, and behaviors negatively.

I know you want to get rid of your mental illness as much as anybody else because right now, your depression might be disturbing and too heavy to handle. Fortunately, you are on the right page. In this article, you will learn many things about depression, how it can build up, what factors affect it, and what coping strategies might work best for you. But before any of that, you need to introduce yourself to a treatment plan. Let’s talk more information about it from these frequently asked questions below.

How do you write a treatment plan? 

Writing a detailed treatment plan should have all the information about a patient’s disease. It should also focus on treatment, treatment alternatives for the patient’s disease, and the expected length and probable side effects of the treatment. The treatment plans usually pursue a simple format following a patient’s personal information, demographics, and psychological history. It should contain an accurate diagnosis of the patient’s current mental health problem. From there, the plan should indicate high-priority treatment goals, measurable objectives, and a clear timeline of the treatment progress.

 What are the general methods used to treat depression? 

Experts and licensed therapists commonly use three methods to help address depression. Cognitive-behavioral therapy or a short-term, goal-oriented psychotherapy treatment follows practical ways to help the patient change patterns of thinking, behavior, decision-making, and problem-solving issues behind people’s difficulties. Second is interpersonal therapy that targets relationship issues that cause toxicity and psychological problems. Lastly, there is psychodynamic therapy that focuses on understanding mental and emotional processes instead of behavior.

 What are the four types of depression? 

The four common types of depression are Major Depression, Situational Depression, Psychotic Depression, and Postpartum Depression. All of these require specific treatments and medication. If you think you might be experiencing the symptoms of these mental illnesses, please seek help immediately. There is no time for hesitation when it comes to your psychological health is at risk.

 Why is a treatment plan important? 

Treatment plans are significantly necessary for mental health care for several reasons. It can provide direct instructions on how services, treatments, and medications should be at best delivered. Those other professionals who do not rely on treatment plans are often at risk for fraud, waste, and abuse. Without a treatment plan, there is the possibility of causing harm to people in therapy.

Be mindful to consult with a licensed professional. Do not engage with a therapist who only says he knows what to do. Look for credentials and proofs. It would be best if you can find someone that your friends and relatives recommend.

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 Who needs cognitive behavioral therapy? 

Cognitive-behavioral therapy (CBT) is a psychological method that proves to be efficient for various mental and emotional problems, including alcohol and drug abuse issues, depression, anxiety disorders, eating disorders, marital problems, and other severe mental illnesses. But a friendly reminder to all individuals is vital to get a diagnosis for a mental health condition before engaging in any psychological treatment.

 Why is it important for a client to be involved in their treatment planning? 

Clients need to get involved in treatment planning because they act as the center for the therapeutic process. The therapists rely on their mental health status to measure whether a certain type of therapy is working. Clients must have any involvement in creating their treatment plan because the process is unique and specific. It directly caters to your mental health needs without touching unimportant aspects of your psychological struggle.

 Which is a barrier to seeking mental health treatment? 

Some common barriers to access mental health care include transportation, lack of insurance, affordability, and time. Limited availability of mental health care services has a huge impact as well. Also, lack of knowledge about mental illnesses, fears about treatment, insufficient mental health care policies, and stigma are known barriers.

 What questions do therapists ask?

Questions that therapists mostly ask include, “what brings you here?” “Have you ever seen a professional mental health expert, therapist, or counselor before?” “How does the mental health problem typically make you feel?” “Overall, how would you describe your mood?” “What makes the problem better?” Some questions may be specific and sometimes personal, but it is still up to you how much information you are more than willing to share with your therapist.

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Final Thoughts

Of course, you know a lot of coping strategies that can help you get rid of depression. There’s eating a well-balanced diet, drinking enough water every day, exercising regularly, getting enough sleep, meditating, maintaining social connection, etc. But those things can become useless when you don’t have a plan. It is genuinely essential to understand that every step towards your psychological recovery and every action you take require a concrete understanding. You shouldn’t just go with the flow and change your routine, take pills whenever you want, or talk to a therapist when you feel like it. You need to understand the importance of learning more about your depression, knowing your triggers, and finding the appropriate coping strategies that suit your needs. Plan what you got to do and work on it until you reach the better mental and emotional health you deserve.

 

Frequently Asked Questions About Marriage Depression

Love is among the most wonderful and overwhelming feelings you could ever experience, and when two people are joyous and satisfied in a marriage, it progresses into something positive. But as life presents unpredictable challenges, even the most powerful bonds could become stressed and burnt out.

Most married couples are fully aware that difficulties often intervene in happy moments at some point in their lives. These could be health complications, unemployment, a loved one’s death, or any devastating event. However, one thing they are seldom ready for is a depression in marriage.

Ask any person whose marriage has surpassed marriage hardships of their secret, and he or she will tell you the same thing: it takes efficient communication and hard work. Marriage depression is not at all different. The healing can be done as a family affair with beneficial outcomes.

Indeed, the risk that a couple will undergo some depression in a marriage is definitely high. The National Institute of Mental Health states that over 16 million adults over 18 suffer from major depression yearly. But how can couples be made more aware of their signs and symptoms? A depression questionnaire could help.

There are various depression tests and quizzes online that couples can take to confirm if they are going through depression or other types of mental health conditions.

Below are some frequently asked questions about depression questionnaires that could help couples know more about marriage depression and help themselves go through and overcome marriage challenges.

What are the PHQ 9 Questions?

Some of the questions found on the PHQ 9 ask about the following:
• Overeating or poor appetite
• Feeling hopeless, depressed, or down
• Lack of interest or love in doing activities
• Lack of energy or feeling tired
• Feeling like you are a failure or you have let down your family
• Difficulty sleeping, staying asleep, or over-sleeping

What is the PHQ 9 Depression Scale?

The PHQ 9 or the PHQ Depression Scale is one half the length of several other depression scales and has a comparable specificity and sensitivity. It is composed of nine criteria, with which DSM-IV depression bases its diagnosis.

What is the PHQ 2 questionnaire?

The PHQ 2 or the Patient Health Questionnaire is a concise screening instrument used to measure major depression. It consists of questions 1 and 2 of the PHQ 9 questionnaire, which focuses on the core indications of depressive disorders (Anhedonia and depressed mood).

What is the name of the depression test?

The Patient Health Questionnaire is the module that scores each item found on the DSM-IV criteria as 0 to 3. It has been qualified for use in the area of primary care. However, it should not be used as a screening instrument for depression. It can be used to keep track of the level of depression and the treatment response.

What is a normal PHQ 9 score?

Severe depression is scored 20 to 27 according to the PHQ 9, while a score of 15 to 19 is considered moderately severe. Moderate depression scores range between 15 and 19, and finally, 0 to 4 signifies no depression.

What is the primary cause of depression?

There is no primary cause of depression, as it can happen for various reasons and has many different triggers. For some, a stressful life situation, like a loved one’s death, divorce, or unemployment, can be the trigger. Various causes can frequently combine to result in depression.

What does a PHQ 9 score of 22 mean?

A score range between 20 and 27 signifies severe depression.

How is depression severity measured?

To associate your symptoms with those of the others to identify the severity of your depression, you may be required to take one or more standardized questionnaire examinations. Examples of these include the Beck Depression Inventory, Zung Self-Rating Depression Scale, and the Hamilton Depression Rating Scale.

Who is at greatest risk for depression?

Major depression is mostly seen in people ages 45 to 65. Those in their middle-age years at the top of the curve but people at each end of the curve – the very old and the very young – may have a higher likelihood of developing severe depression.

What happens to the brain during a depression?

The primary subcortical limbic brain areas associated with depression are the hippocampus, dorsomedial thalamus, and amygdala. Both functional and structural-functional irregularities in these regions have been seen in depression. Reduced hippocampal volumes have also been found in people with depression.

How is GAD 7 scored?

The GAD 7 score is computed by designating rates of 0, 1, 2, and 3 on the response classifications of ‘not at all,’ ‘several days,’ ‘more than half the days,’ and ‘nearly every day,’ respectively. Then the scores of the 7 questions are added together. The overall GAD 7 score for all items ranges between 0 and 21.

What is a GAD 7 test?

The GAD 7 or Generalized Anxiety Disorder Assessment test is an instrument composed of seven items used to assess or gauge the level of generalized anxiety disorder. Each item inquires the subject to score the severity of his symptoms in the span of two weeks.

What is a PHQ 9 screen?

The PHQ 9 is the depression component that rates each of the 9 DSM-IV criteria as not at all (0) to nearly every day (3). It has been qualified for primary care use. However, it is not used as a screening instrument for depression but only for monitoring the level of depression and the treatment response.

What are the psychological factors of depression?

Occasionally, people go through situations where loss happens, and this can trigger depression. This experience may include loss of a job, lack of support, loss of a friendship or relationship, and the loss of a loved one, among others.

When going through depression in a marriage, the wisest thing to do is go through it as a team and work on healing together. While recovery is a journey that is something personal and profound, there are several things that a partner can do to assist and hasten recovery. Education about mental illness is very important. You also need to encourage your partner to consult a mental health professional who can help manage and deal with depression.

Finally, be understanding and compassionate towards your partner and find ways to alleviate any sources of concern or anxiety the best way that you can.

How Family Therapy Can Improve Your Family’s Mental Health

Believe it or not, family therapy is one of the most effective support treatments for an individual. Statistics show that a person’s recovery rate with mental health problems increases in this kind of setting. At the same time, it also provides a steady level of happiness, which contributes to lower chances of relapse. 

What Is Family Therapy?

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Family therapy refers to an interpersonal strategy dedicated to addressing family issues and overall mental health. The primary goal of this approach is to solve individual problems by revolving around the concept of family. Basically, it explores how one affects the other within that said unit. 

Some of the issues where family therapy can help are the following: 

  • Dealing with the death of a family member
  • Preparing for remarriage
  • Coping with a mental health problem of a family
  • Addressing behavioral issues of a family member
  • Preparing oneself and the family on the possibility of divorce
  • Discussing parenting issues
  • Overcoming substance abuse and addiction

The difference between family therapy and the other types of therapy is the perspective and scope applied to examine behaviors and interactions. It treats every problem and issue as interconnected. Therefore, instead of treating something as an individual concern, it addresses these problems collectively. 

Family therapy aims to solve all problems by involving every member who is a part of the treatment. 

What Are The Benefits Of Family Therapy?

  • Include Family Members In The Whole Recovery Process
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For those in the process of recovering from drugs, alcohol, gambling, and other addiction problems, family therapy is an excellent opportunity to get the support of your family. This approach will help your family members understand your situation. It will give them a brief idea of what the risks and triggers are so they’ll be able to assist you along the way. 

  • Teaches How To Better Communicate Feelings

One of the roles of a family therapist is to guide specific individuals into revealing what they’re feeling. They’re not there to tell you what to say or dictate what they think you’re feeling. Instead, their primary role is to teach their patients how to communicate their emotions better. 

The good thing with family therapy is that other family members can encourage each other to be open. If they have the same attitude, it will be easier for them to solve their problems together. 

  • Tackles The Reason Behind Each Illness

One of the main reasons why individuals fail to understand the wholeness of their conditions is that they do not know its root causes. Given that they don’t know the ins and outs, it’s difficult for them to navigate. They don’t know where to begin and how they can address these problems.

With family therapy, these people will get to understand how their issues work. The presence of their family members will be a big help just in case they get lost along the way. Once a family member understands what they’re going through, it will be easier to support and guide them in the comfort of their home. 

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  • Helps Understand Behavior Patterns

One of the models of family therapy revolves around the concept of understanding behavior patterns. This is what they call the systemic approach. The primary goal of this process is to determine both the conscious and subconscious factors leading to an individual’s behavior. It will also guide them in understanding the different behavior patterns. 

In this approach, the family therapist will act as the neutral party. He or she will play a passive role by asking questions to the clients one at a time. Keep in mind that the therapist will never tell them the causes of these behaviors. Instead, they are there to guide their patients into speculating and deducing what factors contribute to such actions. 

This model also maximizes the power of family. It explores the family’s power structures and focuses the discussion on the hierarchy of the unit. Here, the system emphasizes the importance of the role of parents. The therapists’ responsibility is to ask the parents to study their power roles in the house and as the family’s leaders. They will then need to strategize on how they’ll use this power to work together with their children. 

Keep in mind that this method does not promote having too much power. Instead, it revolves around the idea of using authority to guide the whole family. 

The Importance Of The Role Of Every Family Member

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For a therapy session to be successful, it is essential for every family member involved to cooperate. Keep in mind that each member doesn’t have to be involved. If the issues are only between the parents, there is no need to include the children unless these marital problems start affecting the mental health of the child. 

While this model promotes individual recoveries, the role of each one matters. The critical factor here is the support and love within the family. Those are two of the primary reasons why family therapy is one of the most effective therapy sessions out there.

Moving From In-Home Counseling To Online Therapy For Your Family

Therapy sessions function differently for everyone. It used to be that the ideal scenario for individuals undergoing therapy is through home visits, wherein clients can avoid the public eye and enjoy the comfort of their own houses as they receive counseling. But as technology catches up with the times, experts are acknowledging the different ways that mental health services can be delivered.

What are the benefits of in-home counseling? While outpatient therapy is the most common mode of treatment for people mildly suffering from mental health disorders, intensive in-home counseling is also an alternative usually provided to at-risk children and youth. The purpose of such a comprehensive service is to facilitate the use of community resources within the family while maintaining the home environment.

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“Family therapy perceives an individual’s symptoms as occurring in the larger context of the family,” says Dr. Michael Herkov, Ph.D., an Associate Professor in Psychiatry at the University of Florida College of Medicine.

Dr. Herkov adds, “For instance, a depressive adolescent’s symptoms might be connected to her parents’ marital issues. But if a therapist only consulted the depressed teen, then they might not have shared the greater family problems that could have been a vital part of their depression.”

How To Find The Right In-Home Counselor

The job of a mental health counselor is to help people manage their mental and emotional disorders. While a handful of different professions offer therapy, it is best to adhere to licensed professionals with advanced degrees in psychology, psychiatry, social work, and counseling. Here are some hints to consider when finding the right counselor:

  1. Call or email the therapist and inquire about their practice. The counselor must be accessible and up-to-date with technology and critical scientific knowledge related to the symptoms.
  2. Search online for reviews and referrals. It wouldn’t hurt to ask in mental health forums and groups about their experiences with the particular therapist. But be wary of fake testimonials by anonymous accounts that sound too good to be true.
  3. Find out how much it costs and how long each session is likely to take. Preparing the logistics involved in making such a huge decision is key to developing a transparent relationship and good rapport with the counselor.
  4. List all expectations. While the chances of one therapist ticking all the boxes on the list of desired attributes are dismal, it’s still helpful to figure out their priorities when addressing mental health symptoms.

Marriage and family therapists specialize in working with children and couples to resolve conflicts and overcome behavioral challenges typically perceived as relevant to the home. Family therapy often touches on improving parenting and communication skills, which allows therapists to observe interactions between family members naturally. Such approaches help identify what kind of treatment approach is suitable.

In the United States, more than 6 million people see a family therapist every year, according to the American Association for Marriage and Family Therapy (AAMFT). Furthermore, a 2013 study showed that 57 percent of families engaged in online therapy were successful compared to 42 percent of those who used traditional face-to-face counseling. Is it possible to transition from a home-based therapy to a virtual approach?

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History Of Online Therapy

Since the 2000s, online therapy services have grown popular and widespread, even though it received some backlash due to its unverified business model eliminating doctor-presided sessions a few years prior. Today, anyone can receive professional mental health services online in place of traditional face-to-face counseling.

Some people prefer it because it is accessible, more affordable, and just as effective. Online therapy focuses on emotional health and well-being. Indubitably, online counseling has both advantages and disadvantages from the lens of therapists and clients alike. Here are a few examples:

Advantages Of Online Counseling

    • Increased accessibility. Those people suffering from symptoms and are new to therapy can proceed to an online approach before they commit. Because of the internet, people from remote geographical locations can also experience the benefits of treatment without the necessary traveling. It also supports people who may have physical limitations and mobility weaknesses.
    • Reduce stigma. Therapy helps to treat symptoms related to social anxiety. People who find it hard to leave their homes due to fear of other people, or getting judged because of stigmatization, may find it more comfortable to conduct the session online.

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Disadvantages Of Online Counseling

  • Impersonal. Virtual connections cannot offer the human interaction that is crucial in the therapist’s office. Text-based communication is open to misinterpretation, especially if the foundations of the relationship are not firmly established. Hence, online counseling may reduce the sense of trust and commitment necessary when providing support.
  • Opportunity bias. Online counseling is available to those with internet access. Hence, therapists are limited to providing their services to those with resources and leaving out underserved populations that may need them.

Regardless of the situation, numerous studies have shown that online therapy can help support treatment plans, whether for an individual or a family unit.

For adult families, online counseling also helps when each member may be living in different states or countries, and therefore find it impossible to be in the same place. Fortunately, counselors have adapted their practices to accommodate such situations, holding people safe, albeit in a virtual space.

 

 

3 Distractions To Try Amid A Pandemic

The mere idea of experiencing a pandemic used to be enough to make people with anxiety cringe in their seats. Now that it is genuinely happening due to COVID-19, being fearful can do nothing but make your life worse than it should be. 

I cannot suggest a cure for anxiety, but I can talk about three likely sources of distraction that may give you peace of mind.

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Cooking

Whether you are an omnivore or a vegan, you need food to survive on this planet. If I am honest, you should be eating now more than ever to fill your body with essential nutrients and avoid relying on synthetic vitamins too much. Thus, the first distraction that you should try is cooking.

I know that many people see cooking as one of their weaknesses. Others are too busy with work, so they say, “I’d rather eat takeouts daily than prepare my meals.” However, considering you are not a frontline worker, you may not have much to do at home, so you can learn how to cook.

Honing your cooking skills should not be too challenging, especially if you start with the basics. For instance, you may try frying eggs and bacon. Then, look up simple recipes for soup, stew, or any dish that you love. Even if it does not taste good at first, you can keep on practicing until you perfect it.

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Landscaping

It is common for hardworking individuals to hire a landscaper to make their gardens as gorgeous as possible. They spend hundreds or thousands of dollars for it, even though they may not know half of the plants there. As long as it is better than their neighbor’s, it’s okay.

While you may have done the same thing over the years, landscaping is among the best distractions that you can ever try. It is time-consuming to cultivate the soil and grow new plants; you may need to watch countless YouTube videos about lawnmowing or creating garden fixtures, too. Not to mention, you will be working under the sun for hours and sweating buckets. It won’t be pretty, but you won’t be able to think of the pandemic, so you should give it a shot anyway. 

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Woodworking

Woodworking is not a typical hobby for most people. Like landscaping, it does not offer glamour or luxury because you will be working with power tools. You may also get covered with wood dust and risk nicking your skin with the blade or hammering your finger accidentally. However, you may find this activity distracting enough to keep your mind off of current events.

If you can’t picture out what I mean yet, imagine how much work is required to build and install kitchen cabinets. First, you need to look for the best type of wood that will not expand when water touches it. Aside from that, you must measure every piece correctly and ensure that all the cabinets are not too wide for the kitchen wall. Even when the boards are ready, it takes a while to put everything together and screw them into place. Hence, this woodworking project may keep you busy for at least a week or so before needing to look for another source of distraction.

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Final Thoughts

If you have not noticed it yet, I have recommended activities that are time-consuming yet rewarding. When you cook something well, and your loved ones enjoy it, you feel happy. When your garden looks like a professional landscaper has been there, you can take pride in your work. And when you build a wooden fixture for your home, it can be a conversational piece that will make your guests appreciate you more.

Trying any of the distractions mentioned above will put you in a win-win situation, so choose one that you can do immediately. Good luck!

Understand This: People Need Mental Health Help

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The 2019 Counselors Symposium was a great venue for mental health professionals and counselors to come together and discuss some issues with regards to mental health. With the advent of new technology and having a fast-paced society, depression and anxiety are now considered as main issues that have been talked about by mental health professionals. These are real problems and are serious as diabetes, stroke, or heart ailments.

Continue reading “Understand This: People Need Mental Health Help”

How To Stay Sane During A Pandemic?

Ever since the pandemic has broken out, I have been chilling at home with my dog. I know that the reason why we need to do all this is unpleasant, but my experience so far has been excellent. For instance, I work from home, so I need not get up early to beat the morning rush. I have been eating healthier now than in the last few years, too. I never knew that I would be able to do it anytime soon.

Despite my positive experience with home quarantine, though, I am aware that not a lot of people echo my thoughts. Some of my friends are running out of ideas to entertain themselves or their kids. Others are beginning to get depressed by the isolation, to the point that they want to break the rules.

Although I will never do the latter, I somewhat understand such sentiments. Even my 50-year-old dad, who is used to going to work five times a week, spends his afternoon sweeping the fallen leaves in our backyard. If the pile is not too high on that day, Mom has told me that he shakes the tree. More leaves will then fall, and he can do the chore a little longer. It sounds crazy but also very relatable.

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If you feel like you’re about to lose your mind, here are some tips to stay sane while waiting for the quarantine to end.

Pick A Hobby That You Can Do For A Long Time

Your first line of defense against boredom is an activity that will allow you to pass the time without needing to check the clock. In my case, that is working on puzzles. A friend gave me a 2000-piece puzzle last year that I did not get to open because of my busy schedule. Now that I have nothing to do at home, I have had the opportunity to put the pieces together for days. I have enjoyed every minute that I spent on it.

In your case, it can be anything that you can do indoors. E.g., baking, painting, wood carving, or even LEGO building. The key is to choose an activity that you won’t be able to finish in a few hours. This way, you have something to look forward to the next day.

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Stop Thinking About Coronavirus Too Much

Coronavirus is the sole reason why many countries need to issue a lockdown. It is the main topic of every news, whether it is in text or visual form. Even the royalty-free image sources mostly have pandemic-related photos.

No matter how much COVID-19 information is available on every platform, I suggest that you turn your cheek away sometimes. It is one thing to get updates about the outbreak, but it is also another thing to obsess over it. Your life will be much better off if you think of other things besides that, such as what’s for lunch today or what movie you can watch with your friends next.

Sign Up To An Online Counseling Platform

I know how some people have shown doubts about the effectiveness of online counseling over the years. A few of them say that it’s a fluke; others are quick to assume that it’s an outright scam. However, now that you cannot even meet your therapist in person, online counseling may be the best way to keep your sanity during these uncertain times.

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The primary benefit of signing up for an online counseling platform is that mental health professionals are available 24/7. You may be dealing with a panic attack at 3 A.M., for instance, and someone will reply to you if you call or text them. Help is highly unlikely to come from a conventional therapist in this scenario, though.

 

Let’s all focus on surviving this pandemic with a healthy body and mind. Cheers!

A Counselor’s Life

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The 2017 Counselors Symposium was what I needed, at that time, to push through with my chosen career. I am a school Guidance Counselor by profession, and I thought I was ready to face angsty teenagers right after I got my certification in 2017. But I was not emotionally prepared for what came to be the first month I was on duty. I met Melinda. She is sixteen years old, and she told me that she was pregnant. And that she did not want her baby.

Continue reading “A Counselor’s Life”

How To Overcome The Stigma Of Counseling

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The 2018 Ohio Counselors Conference had a 3-day convention emphasizing the importance of counseling in a variety of issues we are facing today. As mental health issues became more prevalent, the prevention of stigma on counseling needs promotion. But how can we overcome the stigma of counseling and allow ourselves to acknowledge that we might need help from coping with our struggles without the fear of being shamed? 

Counseling is a beneficial tool that can provide people with coping skills and a safe place to process their emotions and feelings. Despite all the efforts to end the shaming on seeking mental health support by promoting its benefits, there is still a stigma that deters people from giving counseling a try. This stigma, however, shouldn’t stop you from prioritizing your health and find ways to attain clarity in your life. No one should stop you from being happy. Here are some ways to help you overcome the stigma of seeking counseling.  

Understand that seeking help is a sign of strength

People don’t always admit that they’re struggling. It’s a culture that we must end because it will only hurt us in the long run. All people need help, and seeking a way to find a solution to your distress is a courageous thing to do. It would be best if you were congratulating yourself for finally having the strength to address your problems. 

If you have depression and other mental health disorders, you must silence the stigma of seeking help that surrounds you. As with a man who acquired a leg injury, he would go to a doctor, wouldn’t he? 

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You are not “crazy.”

The stereotypes placed on people with mental illness by popular culture limits people to understand what counseling is. Counseling is a process that includes reflection, exploring choices, and finding ways to cope with mental or emotional stressors. You are not crazy for seeking contentment and happiness in your life. Everyone’s journey is different, so is yours; you’re not “crazy” for trying a different route.

Know that you are not alone.

Isolating yourself because you think you’re the only one going through the problem you’re facing is harmful and is untrue. Many people are hesitant to discuss their struggles, but it is common to seek professional help. Everyone goes through something at some point. So, do know that you’re not alone in your fight.