4 Lifestyle Changes to Help You Improve Your Mental Health
Mental health is something that can affect so many different areas of our life. When we’re not feeling quite like ourselves, this can cause problems with our relationships, our job, home life and much more. There are medications and professionals that can help with treating mental health issues, but there are some lifestyle changes that can make a big difference as well.
If you’re living a very sedentary lifestyle, this can cause you to slip into a bit of a depression even if you typically have sound mental health. Furthermore, many people with diagnosed mental health issues notice that they have a flare-up of their symptoms when they haven’t been getting out much. This is a big reason why seasonal affective disorder is such a prevalent condition in areas of the country that experience cold and dark weather during the winter months. Taking a walk each day or exercising regularly can make a big difference.
Cut Your Screen Time
Anxiety is at an all-time high right now among the younger generations. This has a lot to do with the amount of time that people are spending on their laptops, tablets and smartphones. Social media isn’t an effective substitute for social interaction, with some saying it’s even dangerous. The light that is emitted from these devices can actually cause sleep issues. It’s a good idea to stop using your devices at least a full hour before you are going to head to bed. Instead of reading social media posts on your phone before heading to bed, think about incorporating some basic meditation into your bedtime routine. A lot of people like to unwind with a warm bath or a light snack.
There is an old saying that states “you are what you eat.” If you fill your body up with processed and unhealthy foods, this will result in your mental state not being what it should be. In order to feel happy and positive, you should consume a diet that is rich in fruits and vegetables. Lean protein and whole grains are also beneficial. Limit refined sugar, which can be linked to increased anxiety and depression. You should also make sure that you’re eating regularly throughout the day. It can be tempting to skip meals when you’re not feeling like yourself from a mental standpoint, but letting your blood sugar drop can increase your unpleasant symptoms.
Use Professional Services
A lot of people feel like they need to battle their mental health issues on their own. However, people who use the assistance of a mental health professional on a regular basis will generally find that their symptoms are better managed over a longer period of time. It can be a positive experience for you to meet with a counselor or social worker once every few weeks to discuss what’s going on.
Whether minor or medically recognized, mental health issues are something that we are becoming increasingly aware of as a society, and with awareness comes change. There are many different ways of coping with mental health issues, but even simple lifestyle changes can make a really big difference in how you feel on a day-to-day basis.
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