August 4, 2011

Restoring Happiness in People With Depression

This seems to be a new way for people to battle depression, but has very little scientific basis to support it and has not been attempted (that is known) on people with severe depression. Researchers at the University of California, Riverside and Duke University Medical Center have been working on practicing positive activities as a way to mitigate mild depression.

Positive Activity Interventions (PAIs) is the new approach for treating depression as covered by a team of UCR and Duke psychology, neuroscience, and psychopharmacology researchers. This method is something that I can believe will work for many people. I say this because I have used slightly different activities in the last several years and it does help. Other people will need to read this article and find what may work for them, but I am confident that they can find something that can help.

Depression does not affect everyone with diabetes, but about two-thirds of us do have to deal with depression. Many people refuse to recognize depression and often suffer the effects. Others refuse help and this can often cause them to be in depression for longer that they should and this in turn affects the management of diabetes and makes regaining good management often more difficult.

Quote - PAIs are intentional activities such as performing acts of kindness, practicing optimism, and counting one's blessing gleaned from decades of research into how happy and unhappy people are different. This new approach has the potential to benefit depressed individuals who don't respond to pharmacotherapy or are not able or willing to obtain treatment, is less expensive to administer, is relatively less time-consuming and promises to yield rapid improvement of mood symptoms, holds little to no stigma, and carries no side effects. Unquote

People often underestimate the long-term impact of practicing brief, positive activities. Positive activities have been around for many years and it is just recently that researchers have taken notice and are now applying measuring applications to determine their benefits and understanding why these positive activities work. The one factor that is being seen is they are simple to practice and extremely practical to do with little cost.

An association that is active in promoting the science and practice of positive psychology is the International Positive Psychology Association (IPPA). You may read about them on their website here.

I therefore plead with everyone that may suffer from depression to recognize it and learn how to deal with it for the benefit of your diabetes management.

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