Tuesday, May 21, 2013

Shshshh Space Speaks,Listen Carefully !

It is eerie and humbling.All our tittle tattle fades into insignificance when we strain our ears for those soft sounds emanating from  interplanetary space.This humongous cosmos is mind blowing,but no less is man's invasion into it's secrets.What next?One is forced to wonder!

Meanwhile here are some sounds from space as captured by NASA.Enjoy !!!!!!!

Video courtesy Nasa.

Tuesday, May 14, 2013

Treating #Depression

When you have a physical ailment you know exactly what to do.The situation changes radically when we enter the realm of mental afflictions.They leave us jittery & perplexed.

Let us talk about depression here.It's onset is slow & insidious.There is a lot of stress,something happens to shatter your equilibrium,you become anxious,worries give way to fears & this goes on for weeks,you lose interest in activities which used to enthuse you,your daily routine takes a beating,your sleep & appetite are disturbed,the future seems dim,your facial expressions denote unhappiness & then you decide you have to do something about it.But what?

Let us first decide whether you are depressed or just sad.You can take the help of this site to find out.If it turns out that you are depressed & if you are the lucky owner of certain warm,dependable relationships, you can pour your heart out & seek advice.This alone will restore your cheer to some extent.But what if this option does not exist or it does not suffice? Seek a counselor?Many of us avoid doing that.Time passes & the gloom refuses to lift.Should you see a psychiatrist?Again,no one wants to be labeled a nut--however wrong this stigma may be!!Besides, ill effects of psychiatric medicines are a major deterrent.There is also the fear that they are habituating.Above all there is this reluctance to see a psychiatrist & be viewed as a mental patient.

Major Depression
So what should you do?Let me state at the outset that major depression with or without suicidal thoughts requires prompt medical attention.A  family doctor will refer you to a psychiatrist if he sees the need.The psychiatrist will prescribe you medicines but along with this, psychotherapy & some other changes too will be required.The stressful situation which triggered the onset needs to be rectified. 
If you believe in Homeopathy then you can see a Homeopath.The homeopaths say that mental disorders can be cured if early help is sought.Either way,treatment is essential.

Mild or Moderate Depression
These cases are relatively easier to treat through self help incorporating life style changes.This approach is preferable to medication because the arena of antidepressants is fraught with ambiguity & unpredictability.All patients do not respond in the same way to a particular drug & the same person may react differently at different times.The patient may show improvement with one medicine but not with other medicines of the same category.Ill effects of a drug too vary from person to person.On the whole careful monitoring is needed to zero in upon the best line of treatment.

"The Myth of Overmedication
As many as 50% of cases of depression will lift over time with no treatment, according to some studies — a fact that contributes to the persistent perception that antidepressants are overprescribed. Such data suggests that it makes sense to start with non-drug therapies like exercise and psychotherapy, at least to treat people with first-time mild or moderate depression and especially those whose sadness is directly caused by a recent setback or personal loss.Read more: http://www.time.com/time/health/article/0,8599,1991841,00.html#ixzz2T8exp300"

Shift to the method of self help through life style changes--there is a marked decrease in negative repercussions & the thought that you do not require medicines is very reassuring.You have nothing to lose.Admittedly,it is demanding for a depressed person to get out of bed and start a physical routine but the rewards are gratifying.The first time you attempt this during a depressive bout, you may find it very taxing to leave your bed, but as you continue,your stamina will increase,sadness will subside & you will soon begin to appreciate it's benefits.

The support of family is very important in extricating the patient out of his trough.These are some measures i would suggest:---

Non Drug Supportive Measures
*1)  Get a physical check up to rule out any disease.

*2) Consult a psychotherapist,counselor or psychologist.

*3) Talk to family or friends.

*4) Try to work out a viable solution to the problem which is       
       intimidating you.

*5) Take a break from stressful occupations when depression is 

*6) Chart out a program of physical fitness,it will aid the secretion
       of dopamin & serotonin.

*7) Stick to a normal daily routine,don't let lassitude overtake you.

*8)Take part in group activities or hobby classes to meet like-
      minded persons.

*9) Take a healthy diet.Abstain from alcohol or substance abuse. 

*10)Have a good sleep,do not take tea or coffee before bed time.

*11)Set small achievable targets for yourself.

*12)Celebrate your successes with gusto.

*13)Learn a new skill to augment your confidence.

*14)Take sufficient rest.

*15)Take the support of spirituality if it works for you.

*16)If all these efforts do not give desired results,go for C B T.

It is worthwhile to shake off depression through these life changes.But if you feel yourself worsening then please see a doctor.In case you are put upon medication, give regular feedback to him about how the medicine is affecting you.Those who have taken psychiatric medicines for a length of time but want to discontinue them for some reason,should do it under a doctor's guidance.Immediate cessation can be harmful.

If you like this post you may also like to read the following"

Both pics & excerpt courtesy google.

Monday, May 6, 2013

#Depression--Ease The Burden

Depression is spreading it's tentacles far and wide.According to WHO it has become the leading cause of disability worldwide & 350 million people suffer from it.Less than half of them receive treatment & around one million commit suicide every year.It is definitely something which requires careful attention because it virtually blots out all other joys,affecting not only the patient but also his kith & kin.A depressive person is unable to function or relate properly & falls prey to many health problems.

An interplay of psychological,social & biological factors causes depression.While we may not be able to change some of them,there are many which can be controlled.The most glaring villain here is our  own thought process.By modifying our thoughts we can reach better levels of adjustment.

*When depression results from unfortunate life events or  circumstances beyond our control it leaves us with no other alternative but to bear it stoically.We cannot put back the clock or undo death,disease or loss of job or relationships.The only thing we can do is,allow time to heal the wound & find a substitute to fill the vacuum.

*So many times it happens that we are faced with a difficult situation but have little to guide us regarding the best course of action to be adopted.We use our discretion to choose an option,things go haywire & we are plunged into remorse .Or maybe in a fit of anger or retaliation,we purposely hit out against someone but later on we are overtaken by regrets.Why not be kind to our own self just as we would be to someone else & close the chapter?Why add guilt pangs to an already smoldering state of mind? 

*Poor performance despite our best efforts, can be very demoralizing.Why this happens & how we can get rid of it is a subject for another discussion.But dejection & despair are certainly not the answers;they erode our efficiency still further.It is vital to remember that a vast majority of mankind is average.There is very little room at the top & all cannot fit there.Aspire & strive,but don't let mediocrity depress you.

*It is simply not possible to rise higher & higher all the time.Our knowledge,our way of thinking & working, become outdated;we become less sharp,more forgetful,fall sick & grow old.Certainly reinventing oneself is desirable & it shows results too,but there comes a time when we reach a plateau and at that point it is better to admit that old has to give way to new.What goes up must come down.Why not accept this fact & settle comfortably at the backseat?This has nothing to do with our mental acumen or efficiency;it is simply an ageing process.

*The all pervasive preoccupation with good looks & linking them with self-worth & success is responsible for many woes.We are so obsessed with a slim figure,a toned up body,perfect features & a dashing personality ; that any perceived flaw is enough to send us into the throes of distress.How many of us are satisfied with our personalities? Difficult to say-but there are lots & lots who are utterly unhappy with themselves.There is always some grouse or the other plying at the back of their minds--'I wish I could laugh & joke like Bobby','why can't I make hordes of friends like Ritu does?',' Rita is so poised,wish I was like her','I should go out more often & enjoy partying like Rina'--you can add any number of lamentations to this list.
It is not easy to break out of the mold we have been cast in.Our genes,our rearing,our environment & myriad experiences have combined to make us what we are.Instead of aping others & losing our individuality;it is much more beneficial to make an inventory of our positive characteristics & take pride in them.Accept yourself in totality.Observe people around you & you will find that it is only in magazines & movies that perfect beauty exists & that beauty is not natural at all.

*Rejection from any quarter is unsettling--a presentation gone awry,a missed promotion,a lost job opportunity or a failed exam--these setbacks are saddening for all.But that one event is not the end of the story.There will be other opportunities &  dreams will be fulfilled too, just wait for the right time and make it happen.
One rejection which is hard to accept is a breakup with a loved one.In such cases it is best to realize that what is over,is over.Those days will not come back.Who knows, someone better may be waiting to enter your life! 

* We all crave recognition,approval & appreciation,and we are disappointed when anyone dislikes us.In our quest for popularity we often say 'yes'when we actually want to say 'no';thus taking extra load on our shoulders and adding to our stress.If we go about trying to please everyone we will end up feeling used or exploited.Such relationships do not last long.Just as we cannot please everyone so also we can't expect everyone to like us.Adjusting to & relating to a close coterie of friends & family is much more rewarding.With the rest-maintain cordial terms but don't be distressed if someone ignores you.

I certainly do not advocate accepting the status quo and lazing in your comfort zone.Evolve & shine for all you are worth but your targets & ambitions must be grounded in reality because there is a thin line which demarcates where your potentialities end & limitations begin.Your attempts to cross this line are bound to fail.

Life is never perfect for anybody.Savor the beautiful moments as they come.Enjoy what you have & forget what you lost.This is the best way to stave off depression.Because depression,when it comes,will not go away without taking a toll.
Image courtesy google.