Why are so many people, now suffering from Depression and Anxiety, as we become more connected through social media, people have more "friends" than ever so why are so many people on Anti-Depressants or suffering with Anxiety?
The answer may be in the fact we are social beings and we need to communicate with one another not electronically but socially person to person.
This includes our children and could go some way to explain why one in six young people in the UK are suffering from some level of Anxiety.
At our most elemental level, humans are social animals. Our brains evolved to ensure our survival, and they operate best when we interact and connect with others. Science has proven that social exchanges change the neurotransmitter and circuit activity in your brain which decreases stress, anxiety, and depressive symptoms and ups those calm and happy feelings.
So with that in mind, let's consider "the depressed brain." When someone is suffering from depression, their oxytocin (the love and bonding neurochemical) levels are out of sync . Oxytocin both influences and is influenced by depression. We need these chemicals to be released on a regular basis to ensure our happiness.
The positive effects of upping oxytocin are most likely because oxytocin supports your brain's serotonin, the feel good neurochemical. Oxytocin also calms the reactivity of the amygdala, the fear center of your brain, and strengthens its communication with brain circuits that help you control emotions.
Simply put, depression is a dysfunction in the communication between your brain’s frontal lobe, your thinking brain, and limbic system which controls autonomic bodily functions, like breathing and heart beat, and endocrine function, particularly in response to emotional stimuli. Research has shown that emotional support enhances activity in the frontal lobe and turns down the response of the limbic system.
Social support can come in many forms however, the best form is the social one to one contact where our Brain gets the stimulation of all the senses by interacting with another human being. Make a call meet a friend or even engage at the supermarket checkout, it will be good for your Mind Health.
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