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Depressed people often stay indoors, do not go out, keep the drapes drawn and the lights out. They often sleep all day and stay up all night. They do not exercise or clean house. They frequently let their hygiene go. They do not “take care of business” such as bills, errands, etc. They do not socialize and will stop seeing friends or family. They will not answer the door or the phone.

Here are some suggestions on how to treat depression without medication:

1. Expose Yourself – To Sunshine

Research has shown that exposure to sunshine reduces depression. This makes perfect sense. People struggling with depression typically avoid sunlight and prefer darkened rooms with the curtains drawn. This only exacerbates feelings of isolation, sadness and hopelessness. Even if you just go sit outside, exposing yourself to sunlight will help lift your mood.

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2)  Melatonin

Melatonin is a natural hormone that the body produces which lulls you to sleep. People struggling with depression tend to sleep all day and stay up all night. This usually results in less deep sleep, or REM sleep. REM sleep is when your mind dreams and your body repairs the damage done during the day. It is important to maintain healthy sleep patterns when fighting any type of mental illness or mental stressor.

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