How Dogs Can Help With Anxiety, Stress and Depression
Depression is often described as a deep, black hole that many people struggle to get out of. As if those thoughts and feelings are not difficult and painful enough, we also seem to find fault in ourselves and sometimes compare ourselves with other people who are seemingly doing better in life. This ends up making our condition worse and keeps us stuck in the same hole we want to get out of.
Do these sentences sound familiar to you? Are you looking for a way out of this deliberating condition?
The good news is that you can actually feel better and live a normal life again. Studies have shown that owning a dog can make a big difference in your fight against anxiety and depression. Taking into account the fact that medication and/or therapy should still be an integral part of your fight against depression, the following are 6 great ways in which owning a dog can help you feel better, both mentally and physically.
How Dogs Can Help With Depression
Finding the best therapy dogs for depression can offer a wide range of mental and physical benefits. Here are some incredible ways owning a dog can help those suffering from stress, anxiety and depression.
The main advantage of owning a dog over other pets is that you must take your dog out for regular walks. Adopting a puppy with the knowledge that you need to take him out for regular walks can be an amazing way to enhance your overall health. Walking is a great exercise for both you and your dog. Moreover, a lack of sunlight has a negative impact on your mental well-being, so taking your dog for daily walks can allow you to get the much-needed sunlight and vitamin D.
Dogs require a routine to remain healthy and happy. They should be walked and fed each day. People also do well on routines. When you establish a proper routine for you and your puppy, you can start introducing healthy and better activities to your own schedule, which can help enhance your recovery.
3. Improved Health
Studies have shown that owning a dog can lower stress levels, reduce blood pressure and improve the feel-good factor in your mind. Many pet owners agree that there is something calming about petting a dog or cuddling a cat. Spending some time with your dog can help enhance the production of a hormone known as endorphin, which causes a soothing effect that helps reduce stress levels. This can greatly benefit those suffering from anxiety and depression. Moreover, taking your furry friend out for daily walks has anti-depression benefits by stimulating the production of chemical known as oxytocin, which is known for lowering heart rate and blood pressure.
4. Unconditional Love and Support
Everyone wants to feel loved, and when no one seems to offer the love you need, you can get it from your dog. Research has found that the companionship offered by dogs can help lower cholesterol levels, and reduce blood pressure. Depression and loneliness are closely related, so owning a dog can be a great way to prevent loneliness, which will ultimately help in your battle against depression. Being close to someone that unconditionally supports and loves you and is eager to prove it immediately you come home can change your overall perspective on life.
5. Promotes Physical Interaction
Occasionally, you’ll find your pet licking your hands, jumping onto your laps and rubbing his body against yours, which can all result in touching, hugging and petting. Research has recently found that petting and hugging your pet can lower stress levels, reduce blood pressure and boost your overall mood.
6. Great Distractions
Your dog will need to be fed, walked and provided with a lot of exercises on a regular basis. Engaging in all these activities can greatly distract you from any horrific thoughts. That way, dogs are able to help your recover from distressing experiences, anxiety and depression.
Of course, adopting a dog doesn’t have to be the only way to improve your symptoms. Medication and/or therapy should help in your fight against depression. The secret is to find the best therapy dogs for depression as well as a reputable mental health professional that can help you in your journey towards feeling better.
The good news is that there are plenty of different medications and many variations of therapy available to help you out. However, you need to exercise patience every step of the way, but you don’t have to feel that way forever! If you want to learn more about dogs and dog training go to this blog.