Depression is a serious mental illness that negatively affects a person’s performance and quality of life. Contrary to popular myths and misconceptions, depression cannot be cured by hard physical labor, work, or sports. It is caused by a violation of biochemical processes in the human body. Looking at the patient, it is not always possible to determine that he is sick, since others may not notice changes in the psyche. One of the common symptoms of depression is insomnia.
The impact of depression on a person’s life
Despite widespread information about depression and growing confidence in psychotherapists, many people still see it as a manifestation of laziness, natural pessimism, or an unwillingness to look at life positively. Some people think that “it didn’t happen before”, but it’s not. Many symptoms were ignored for a long time, and it was not accepted to seek psychotherapeutic help.
Depression has a number of symptoms that are not immediately noticed by others. Its emotional manifestations include depressed mood, anxiety, guilt, fear for the life of loved ones, lack of interest in favorite things. A person with a depressive disorder is often prone to gloomy thoughts, including suicidal ones. He is constantly haunted by a feeling of his own uselessness and meaninglessness of existence.
Depressive disorder also manifests itself in a range of physical symptoms, and may masquerade as frequent colds, heart or stomach problems. His frequent companion is also insomnia. From gloomy thoughts, a person can often wake up and feel the negative effects of lack of sleep.
Why does depression interfere with sleep?
Proper and healthy sleep is one of the main components of a healthy lifestyle. Even one sleepless night can seriously affect the performance and mental activity of a person. With a depressive disorder, the level of stress hormones in the body increases, which leads to insomnia and trouble falling asleep.
Inability to fall asleep, frequent awakenings, interrupted sleep are frequent companions of a depressive disorder. The less a person sleeps, the worse his state of health during the day. The result is irritability, decreased mental and physical activity, and increased blood pressure. When a person cannot fall asleep, he is haunted by gloomy thoughts, conflict and stressful situations scroll through his head, and nightmares occur. Chronic insomnia can lead to fear of falling asleep. And in the morning a person wakes up broken and tired.
The inability to recover at night leads to a number of unpleasant consequences. The first one is overeating. The body needs to recuperate, and a person tries to get the missing energy from sweets or coffee. A sleep-deprived person loses attention and the ability to concentrate on work. Insufficient rest at night negatively affects the appearance of a person — circles appear under the eyes, the skin condition worsens. Sleep-deprived people have reduced immunity and an increased risk of colds and infectious diseases.
The most effective way to treat depressive disorders is psychotherapy. In addition to cognitive-behavioral therapy, it includes medication and recommendations for revising the daily routine. People who suffer from insomnia with depression are advised to go to bed and wake up at the same time, do not overeat before bed, and avoid coffee and alcoholic beverages. To normalize falling asleep, it is necessary to maintain a comfortable temperature in the bedroom and stop using electronic devices about 30 minutes before bedtime.
Psychotherapy in the treatment of depression and insomnia
In order to successfully treat insomnia, the depressive disorder itself must be treated. In modern psychotherapy, a number of techniques are used to correct human behavior and normalize conditions for a night’s rest. Among these techniques is stimulus control, in which the patient needs to go to bed only when he feels sleepy. Various methods of relaxation and meditation are widely used.
A good night’s sleep also involves reviewing sleep rituals, such as avoiding using a smartphone, computer or watching TV, drinking coffee, alcoholic beverages or tobacco, ensuring that the bed is as comfortable and comfortable as possible. For severe forms of insomnia, a combination of behavioral therapy and medication is possible.
Depressive disorder cannot be cured by willpower, change of scenery, or physical labor. Numerous calls to smile, shake things up and think positively do not affect the patient either. An effective way to treat it, in addition to pills, is psychotherapy. The most common treatment for depressive disorders is a combination of cognitive behavioral and medication therapies.
There are several types of therapy for depressive disorders. This is cognitive-behavioral, the purpose of which is to change the patient’s behavior patterns and internal attitudes that served as a trigger for the development of the disease, interpersonal, aimed at revising relationships and establishing new, more harmonious relationships with others, and psychodynamic, focused on resolving the patient’s internal conflicts, which also could become triggers for the development of a depressive state.
The attitude towards psychotherapeutic treatment in society is gradually changing. People are less likely to associate it with punitive treatment and less and less believe that medicines can turn a person into a “vegetable”. Methods of “relaxation” with the help of smoking and alcohol are not able to solve psychological problems, but only exacerbate them. Not everyone is ready to share their problems with relatives or friends, trigger the disease and do not attach importance to the symptoms of a depressive disorder. And insomnia is one of the most serious symptoms of a person’s mental and physical problems. Therefore, psychotherapists use an integrated approach aimed at eliminating the main cause of the violation of the daily routine and the occurrence of insomnia.