Depression is common. Globally there are more than 300 million people who are affected by depression severe enough to be classified as a medical condition.
There are different types of depression. Here are a few common types.
- Depression as a mood. This is part of a normal emotional outlet, also know as sadness. Feeling sad about the loss of a family member, a quarrel with your partner. It is relatively short in duration and should not disrupt your daily living.
- Persistent Depressive Disorder (also called dysthymia) is having a depressed mood that doesn’t go away for at least two years. One may have episodes of major depression along with periods of less severe intensity.
- Postpartum Depression is a much more serious condition than the usual “baby blues” that women may experience after giving birth. Postpartum Depression usually comes as a full-blown major depression during pregnancy or after delivery. These feelings of extreme sadness, anxiety, and exhaustion may make it challenging for new mothers to complete daily care activities for themselves and/or for their babies.
This article focuses on the non-medical type of depression, which is basically the mood that we feel from time to time.
If you are finding yourself feeling depressed easily or is finding it challenging to handle your mood, there are a number of lifestyle changes that may provide you extra support.
Avoiding junk food may help. A number of studies have found that a poor quality diet that consist of much processed meat, chocolates, sweet desserts, fried food, refined cereals and high fat dairy products resulted in more incidents of depressive symptoms. On the flip side, it appears that people who ate a high quality diet that is rich in fruits, vegetables and fish were less likely to report depressive symptoms.
Exercising may help. When you are physically active, your body gets a temporary boost of feel-good chemicals called endorphins. Research also suggested that regular exercise appears to encourage the brain to rewire itself in positive ways. We are not talking about marathons here. If your physical condition permits, even a slow walk a few times a week may help.
Role Of Essential Oils
Essential oils may help. Research suggests that the perception of smell consists not only of the odors but also a trigger of experiences and emotions associated with these sensations. Ever smelled a perfume and found yourself missing someone? Yap. That’s your sense of smell triggering your emotions.
Our olfactory receptors ( responsible for the detection of odorants ) are directly connected to the limbic system ( a set of brain structures that performs a number of duties including emotions and the sense of smell. It is commonly recognized that the limbic is the most primitive part of the brain. By the time the smell sensations have been relayed to the thinking part of your brain which allows you to identify the scent, studies suggest that the limic system is already activated by then and has possibly already triggered intimate emotional responses.
Therefore when we are feeling down, moody or even depressed, diffusing a pleasant smell may help cheer you up! Try to incorporate it with a relaxing activity such as reading a book or listening to soft music for synergy.
The Bottom line
It is important to understand that we are discussing about non-medical feelings of depression. If you are suffering from a medical depression, it is important that you seek medical attention. Help is always available and you are not alone!
Find below a list of essential oils that may help with feelings of depression and possibly improve your mood. Use essential oils responsibly, seek medical attention when necessary.
Source: Mayo Clinc, WebMD, World Health Organisation, National Institute of Mental Health, Social Issues Research Centre, Wikipedia, Essentials by Mor.
*Information is not intended to replace professional medical assistance or to diagnose, treat, cure, prevent any disease. Essential oils are concentrated and caution must be taken. Conduct an allergy check prior to use. If you are pregnant, nursing, taking medication or have a medical condition, consult a health professional prior to use. Use pure unadulterated essential oils only. Results may vary between individuals. Opinions and comments of individuals featured are of their own and not representative of the site. Always consult a physician when in doubt. You are solely responsible for your actions.
Essential oils that promotes an uplifting mood: