Embarrassing Bodies Down Under

Understanding Depression

1 in 2 Australians will suffer from depression in their lifetime. Learn more about this condition from Dr Brad McKay from Embarrassing Bodies Down Under.

Depression happens for a variety of reasons, it can happen through genetics, passed on through families. It can also happen through life events which get people down. With depression you can feel physical symptoms like not having enough sleep or sleeping all the time. Eating more or eating less. A lack of sex drive as well, this can cause problems with relationships too. Some people if they're getting much worse feel suicidal.

Serotonin helps your brain to function. It helps the nerves to fire off to each other and if your Serotonin is very low that electrical impulse or signal from one neuron, one nerve cell to the other gets damped down. So by increasing the Serotonin it helps to transmit that electrical current from nerve to nerve. If your nerves aren't communicating well with each other, the Serotonin comes down in your brain and people often get depressed as their Serotonin levels starts to decline.

We don't have any blood tests to check for Serotonin levels nor adrenaline levels in the blood stream but we do know that from depression and increasing people's Serotonin in their brain, that people get better. Some people find a dramatic effect from using antidepressants or anti anxiety medication. Antidepressants can be very helpful in helping to speed the brain up and help to think normally rather than just being slowed down. There are many natural ways of treating mild depression. Getting some exercise, eating more healthy, decreasing alcohol intake, taking more care of your diet. Also looking after yourself by de-stressing, looking at lifestyle changes you can make.

The longer you leave it, the worse it can get. If you think you're depressed, it's best to go and talk to your doctor about it.


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