As many as one in eight men may need treatment
for depression during their lifetimes. The telltale signs include
loss of interest in activities that used to be pleasurable, excessive
irritability, becoming socially withdrawn, sleep disturbances,
loss of appetite or increased in appetite, flagging sexual desire,
lethargy, and feelings of worthlessness or excessive guilt. Suicidal
thoughts are present in at least 40 percent of individuals with
Nerves in your brain use chemical substances
called neurotransmitters to communicate with one another. Your
brain holds 80 or so different kinds of neurotransmitter, such
as norepinephrine, dopamine, endorphins, histamine, acetylcholine,
and serotonin. These brain chemicals work together in a delicate
balance to help you concentrate, remember, and perform other mental
tasks. When levels of some are too high and levels of others are
too low, you can feel confused, tired, edgy or depressed.
Neurotransmitter level runs low for various reasons. You may have
inherited delicate brain chemistry from your parents or grandparents.
Or various feelings, especially unrelieved anger, unrealistic
guilt, and loneliness, could have altered these brain chemicals.
The causes might even be something you are.
Everyone feels a little down now and again,
but untreated major depression can result in social and occupational
disability and can even lead people to suicide. If depression
keeps you from performing your job or if sometimes think about
killing yourself then go and seek professional help. If you suspect
a food allergy, see a nutritionally oriented physician and request
a blood test or guidelines for an elimination diet.
Slow, relaxing music helps some people deal
with the root causes of their depression, such as anger, frustration,
sadness or anxiety. Listening to the music for at least 20 mins
each day can help slow down your heart rate andother bidy functionsand
can help you focus on your feelings. --- Janalea Hoffman, R.M.T.,
a composer and music therapist based in Kanas City, Missouri.