Updated: Aug 29, 2019
According to the National Mental Health Association, women experience depression twice as often as men do. More specifically, over 12 million women experience depression each year in the United States, which breaks down to 1 out of every 8 females will meet criteria for clinical depression at some point during their life span.
Even though the diagnostic criteria for depression is the same for both sexes, women are twice as likely to experience the following symptoms when depressed;
Opinions and research vary as to the cause, but one can conclude that the symptoms are related. After all, overwhelming pressures and responsibilities weighed on the female species can and often does lead to increased anxiety levels.
When anxious, many women turn to comfort foods as a coping mechanism. Next, comes the guilt from making non-healthy food choices and last but certainly not least, comes the weight gain.
If you are battling depression and have noticed increased anxiety levels, weight gain or guilt, check out these five suggestions to help you, help yourself.
Talk to your doctor- Visit with your primary care physician about your feelings of depression and your recent weight gain., food cravings or anxiety levels.
Get outside- When is the last time you sat outside just because? Don’t have time to bask in the sun ? Try rolling your car window down on a mild day. Research shows nature can help combat the blues.
Dress nice- spending a few extra minutes with outfit selection and/or standing in front of the mirror before you run out the door can help combat the blues. The old saying goes, “When you look better you feel better” does ring true for many women.
Take a walk- exercise helps create endorphins that can increase your feel good happiness factor.
Practice self compassion- being as kind and understanding to yourself as you are to your most cherished loved ones.
Misti is a licensed mental health professional in private practice in Broken Bow, Oklahoma. For correspondence, firstname.lastname@example.org