Healing at Depression Treatment Retreats
Depression is a serious mental health disorder, and happens to be one of the most common in the United States. According to data from the National Institute of Mental Health, and estimated 16.1 million adults experienced at least one major depressive episode in 2015, or 6.7% of all adults in the U.S. Women are four times as likely to suffer from prolonged depression as men.
Being stuck inside the vortex of depression, day after day, feeling isolated and unable to function in daily life may lead to a search for relief using alternative methods. One of these options is a depression treatment retreat. These holistically based programs provide an environment that is conducive to healing and self-discovery, combining holistic therapies with standard treatment protocols.
Choosing a depression treatments retreat, versus a traditional treatment protocol of antidepressants and therapy, can allow the person healing from the debilitating effects of depression to completely wrap him or herself in a cocoon of tranquility. The retreat type program allows for a complete immersion into examining any deep-seated sources of pain. Whether winding through the grieving process or healing from a devastating traumatic event, depression treatment retreats provides the serene setting to help the person find relief from debilitating depression symptoms.
About Major Depressive Disorder
Major depressive disorder (MDD) is characterized by persistent symptoms that last for at least two weeks. According to the DSM 5 diagnostic criteria, five of the following symptoms must be present:
- Depressed mood most of the day, nearly every day, as indicated by either subjective report or observation made by others.
- Markedly diminished interest or pleasure in all, or almost all, activities more of the day, nearly every day.
- Significant weight loss when not dieting or weight gain, or decrease or increase in appetite nearly every day.
- Insomnia or hypersomnia nearly every day.
- Psychomotor agitation or retardation nearly every day.
- Fatigue or loss of energy nearly every day.
- Feelings of worthlessness or excessive or inappropriate guilt nearly every day.
- Diminished ability to think or concentrate, or indecisiveness, nearly every day.
- Recurrent thoughts of death, recurrent suicidal ideation without a specific plan, or a suicide attempt or a specific plan for committing suicide.
Those who suffer from these debilitating symptoms should seek professional medical and psychological support.
About Depression Treatment Retreats
While some individuals find relief from the symptoms of depression with the help of antidepressants and psychotherapy, others continue to suffer. In these cases, individuals become increasingly frustrated and despairing, finding no real relief in sight. Depression treatment retreats offers a comprehensive program that includes both therapy and holistic activities.
Many people who battle depression have experienced deep loss or trauma that may be a contributing factor in this mental health condition. Therapeutic practices found at a depression treatment retreat will gently guide the individual to examine their past or present circumstances and work toward resolving the lingering emotional damage.
Individual psychotherapy starts with a comprehensive psychiatric evaluation that helps the therapist get an accurate picture of the underlying factors, and any co-occurring conditions such as substance use disorders or other mental health disorders.
The holistic therapies that are provided will enhance the effects of the talk therapy by leading the individual toward self-discovery. Some of the holistic therapies offered at a depression treatment retreat may include:
- Research continues to reveal that yoga, particularly Iyengar yoga, can be impactful in reducing symptoms of depression. A recent study published in the Journal of Alternative and Complementary Medicine found that study participants who engaged in yoga several times per week reduced their scores on the depression screening tool by 50%. Yoga involves precise postures, breath control and deep breathing, which influence the parasympathetic nervous system and improve mood.
- Meditation has been found to help depression symptoms by introducing a new script or thought focus through the guidance of an instructor or audio format. Over time the individual experiences a positive shift in their thinking that replaces negative self talk or obsessive thinking with positive thoughts.
- Mindfulness Training. The practice of mindfulness, or the purposeful focusing of one’s concentration on the present moment, has been shown to help individuals struggling with depression. Using mindfulness-based cognitive therapy, helps improve relationships by learning to be truly present when interacting. This teaches methods such as taking a moment to reflect on the present moment before reacting emotionally during a conflict. It also enables them to appreciate time together and overcome past conflicts. The result was an improvement in symptoms of depression.
- Massage therapy. Massage involves a massage therapist manipulating one’s muscles and soft tissues, and is an ancient practice originating in China 3,000 years ago. By increasing blood flow, easing physical tension and pain, and providing physical touch, massage can help improve sleep quality, reduce stress, and improve mood.
- Another type of traditional Chinese medicine is acupuncture, or the strategic use of needles to provide relief for a variety of conditions. In recent years, it has been found that acupuncture can help alleviate symptoms of depression. Commonly targeted acupoints for aiding depression include Guanyuan, Qihai, Hegu, Taixi, Shugu, and Quchi, among others.
- Art and music therapy. Some individuals do not feel comfortable expressing deeply held thoughts and feelings in therapy sessions. In many cases, these individuals are open to expressing their pain through art and music therapy. With no rigid requirements or particular skills necessary, these types of therapeutic activities allow for open expression that can aid overall depression treatment.
- Equine therapy. Equine therapy involves spending time in the caring of a horse as a means of helping to improve feelings of self-worth, which aids in depression treatment. By grooming, exercising, and feeding the animal, a trust bond develops and a sense of purpose is acquired. This leads to increased self-esteem and improved mood.
- Infrared sauna. It has been shown that short periods of elevated body temperature, or hyperthermia, can act as a type of antidepressant. A recent study reported that whole-body hyperthermia can provide a safe adjunct antidepressant treatment modality.
- Nutritious meals. Brain health is intrinsically tied to nutrition. Research shows that some foods can help mitigate depression symptoms, including complex carbohydrates, lean proteins, low-fat dairy, and nuts and seeds. Vitamin D and omega-3 supplements can also be beneficial in helping depression symptoms.
- Daily exercise. Getting daily exercise can have a powerful impact on mood. Adding 20-30 minutes of cardio, such as brisk walking, hiking, dance cardio, cycling, and running, 3-4 times per week can help elevate the feel-good brain chemicals, endorphins, that lead to better overall fitness, better sleep quality, better concentration, and improved mood.
This multidisciplinary approach to treating depression can help free the individual from the grip of this mood disorder and allow them to move forward with a fresh new perspective and a toolbox of new behavioral responses to past triggers and demons.
The Treatment Specialist offers Resources for Quality Depression Treatment Retreats
Call to receive a complimentary assessment for holistic and/or spiritual depression treatment retreat. There are options for both men or women, and insurance check to get you on the way to finding relief at a depression treatment retreat, depression rehab, and review depression rehab costs and mental health retreats that accept insurance. Take that first step and call today at (866) 644-7911.