Harmony of mind and body is prerequisite in maintaining the health of individuals.
Mind-body techniques are very effective in treating symptoms of depression as an addition to standard treatment such as psychotherapy and anti-depressants. Moreover, in majority of the cases these techniques are very safe and pose least side effects if any.
While practising various mind body techniques for treating depression, if the symptoms of the patient do not improve then one should stop these techniques and consult the psychiatrist immediately.
Mind-body techniques used for improving symptoms of depression
Acupuncture has been found to be reliable and promising treatment for treating major depression. The electro acupuncture is one such method that treats depression by applying small electrical current through acupuncture needles.
It is effective for treating mild depression and chronic medical illness in a natural way by stimulating central nervous system. It leads to increase in the production of naturally occurring chemicals that enhance mood and feelings of individuals.
Acupuncture treatment balances the energy of individuals for maintaining the mental and physical balance of the body.
The role of Yoga in relieving depression is undeniable. In fact, Yoga is more effective than any other therapy in relaxing your mind and body.
The chemical GABA helps in maintaining the calm state of mind and optimal GABA levels are required for proper functioning of brain and central nervous system. On the contrary, low GABA levels causes depression and other mental disorders.
The levels of the GABA are more in individuals who do Yoga as it boosts levels of GABA in the brain that is needed for sound and relaxed mind.
Meditation can overcome depression in various ways including Mindful Meditation and Loving Kindness Meditation.
During Mindful meditation, depressed individuals are taught to attain a state of relaxed and sated mind. It requires practise to achieve a state of mind where individuals can master the art of controlling their mind and generates positive feelings for overcoming depression.
Loving Kindness Meditation deals with enlightening love for bringing out positive changes in depressed individuals. Moreover, individuals can also develop the trait of loving acceptance.
The guided imagery is a procedure where individuals can attain calm and relaxed state of mind by following the instructions of instructor, recorded audio or even written literature.
It relies on the imagery practices that directly influence the autonomic nervous system. Once a patient attains the mentally calm state, he/she can experience reduced stress and anxiety.
Moreover, Guided Imagery can also improve the immune system of the individuals by affecting the brain centres that are connected with the hypothalamus. Thus, Guided Imagery can improve the illnesses related to depression by stimulating the immune system.
The massage therapy is indicated for patients who have structural collapse linked with depression. During the massage therapy, such patients can achieve supported and erect structure. It helps in inculcating stronger feeling for dealing with depression.
Massage helps in providing relaxation to various organs of the body.
Common regions of body that are used for massage therapy for structural support are mentioned below.
• Abdomen and diaphragmatic arch
• Front of the chest (Musculature and connective tissues that causes medial rotation of the shoulders)
• Anterior shoulder and upper arms (Musculature and connective tissues that causes internal rotation of the arms)
• Anterior neck, posterior neck and top of the shoulders (Musculature and connective tissues)
The massage therapy results in significant structural changes in depressed individuals.
However, it should not be used as a standalone therapy and needs to be practised as an addition to the standard treatment including physiotherapy and medications.