Exercise for Anxiety and Depression Relief

Depression can cause anxiety, while having anxiety can bring on depression. The two often are co-occurring disorders and have many similarities including presentation, causes and treatment. However, they are different; depression is more serious because of the higher possibility of suicidal tendencies.

Anxiety is a natural response to some situations like public speaking or getting married. We all get nervous at times, but anxiety should not interfere with daily life. When stress builds, our minds may fill with negative thoughts, causing worry and draining energy. Over time, depression can set in.

Getting a little more exercise has proven to be an excellent method of treatment that is supported by science-based evidence. While lifting weights or jogging might be great for some people, gardening or walking around the block a few times a week can help immensely and be beneficial for many others.

Research on anxiety, depression and exercise shows that the psychological and physical benefits of exercise can also help reduce anxiety and improve mood. Exercise may also help keep anxiety and depression from coming back once you are feeling better.   

Exercise causes endorphins to be released in the brain and causes the individual to feel better. Increasing circulation and a tiny rise in body temperature has a calming effect. Doing something that you like to do is important; starting and continuing is the key to success, so exercise should not be thought of as a chore. A few suggestions are find a fun activity, change it up frequently, set weekly goals and keep it realistic.

Exercise is an important part of mental and physical health.  While exercise is appropriate for many people with anxiety or depression, most people may need additional support and multilayered treatments for the best relief. Proper medical diagnosis is an essential step in finding a long-term solution.