Thursday, May 3, 2012

Sufferers of mild depression--let's talk about "mind-body scans"

It seems as though its been a week of seeing women for their annual female visit and by the end we unearth some ongoing depression. Please know, I am not talking about major depression, as I do feel that medications are beneficial for women that are having major depressive symptoms that include thinking about harming yourself.)

Ladies, there are so many of us suffering from anxiety and depression.
I wanted to pass on to you something that I have learned to incorporate as one of my "habits" that has helped me get to the bottom of my feelings, as I am not one to always know exactly what I'm feeling. Our emotions are directly tied to not only our mental
health, but also our physical health. So on top of regular exercise
and a clean diet, I think utilizing a MIND-BODY SCAN can help us
process "what's wrong." I've tried to explain this to patients during
their appointments, but typically don't have enough time to get into
detail. So here, for your at-home-use, is how to do a MIND-BODY SCAN.

A MIND-BODY SCAN is something to use when you're feeling anxiety, anger,
fear, or just "unsettled". Here's how it works: get to a quiet place
where you can think (I use the bathroom) and go from head to toe,
concentrating on what feels different with your body (are your
shoulders tense, are you clenching your jaw, do you feel like all of
the energy in your body has been zapped?) and address those things by
asking yourself 5 "why" questions.

For example: "Why am I so angry?"

Because I wanted my husband to help me out more.

"Why do I want him to
help me out more?"

Because I feel alone and like I'm a single parent.

"Why do I feel like a single parent?"

Because I feel like I need to
take care of every need of my children so they don't feel abandoned.

"Why do I feel like my children will feel abandoned?"

Because I have memories
of feeling frightened and alone as a child/teenager and don't want my
children to feel this.

Please know, I'm of the "get to the bottom of your demons before we
start medications" school. I would live to hear feedback from anyone who tries or regularly uses MIND-BODY SCANS.

1 comment:

  1. Great post! This is so important to do, especially from a spiritual standpoint, as there is often more going on than what meets the eye, and I know the enemy enjoys playing on those sensitive heartstrings. Oftentimes people will too quickly resort to taking medication before getting to the root of the issue at hand. I believe doing what you call "mind-body scans" helps to diffuse potential blowups in our marriages (or with anyone whom we are in conflict with/feel wounded by), sharpens our awareness of our needs, and strengthens our relationship with Christ (as we ask Him to show us what's really going on that we can't see in the picture). Thanks for sharing this important topic.

    -Rebekah Easling