Pet Ownership Combined With Traditional Therapies Can Improve Your Mood
Let’s say your doctor and you have found the perfect psychiatric medication for your mental health condition. The medication is generic Wellbutrin and from the day you started it your depression has changed night and day. Things seem manageable now. Is that the end of the story? For millions of people, it is. The medication has improved things enough so now life simply resumes and you ride off into the sunset. Medication doesn’t have to be the end of your treatment journey though. In fact, you are likely leaving better days on the table without considering lifestyle changes that can complement your new mental wellbeing. For some, this is where having a pet enters the picture.
Pet ownership is known to improve a person’s mood significantly. Having a pet alongside your traditional therapies can make a huge difference in your mood. Everyone is different, so it’s all about finding what works for you and sticking with it.
Can Pets Reduce Stress In Your Life?
Pets are amazing creatures that can instantly put you in a better mood. But the big question is if they can help reduce stress in your life. We all have to deal with stress in our own ways on a daily basis. Whether you have a demanding job or if you’ve experienced some traumatic moments in your life, certain triggers can make you feel stressed out. When this happens, both your mental and physical health could decline and potentially lead to feelings of depression.
According to a study published in the International Journal of Environmental Research and Public Health, pet ownership can play a major role in enhancing a person’s mental and physical health. This is true whether you are a part of the general population or if you have existing mental or physical disorders.
There’s something about seeing your dog wag its tail when you enter the room that makes you feel loved. Having your pet curl up next to you on the couch when watching television is also a feeling that has to be experienced to fully appreciate it. And you might have heard that exercising is a great way to relieve some stress. However, too many people say they don’t have time to exercise. A good solution for that is owning a pet that needs to be walked frequently. It forces you to get out of the house and find time to walk them and you might experience some stress relief when you do so.
Pet Ownership Can Lead To Psychological Benefits
Pet owners can experience psychological benefits in addition to stress reduction. According to a study published in The Journal of Social Psychology, dog ownership can enhance a person’s well-being because of two main factors: physical activity and social support. The study indicates that a person’s overall well-being is closely related to the level of psychological distress they experience. So the more social support they have, the less likely they are to experience significant psychological distress.
Even if you are a socially active person, you might feel like something is missing in your life. Owning a pet can fill that void and make you have another strong relationship you can depend on. This is particularly important to note for people who don’t seek out friendships and are uncomfortable being social. Dogs can be a great facilitator of human communication when you take them on walks or to the park. Kids and adults alike love pet-friendly dogs and it provides you with a great opportunity to strike up a conversation. All of these factors lead to psychological benefits that can be hard to achieve any other way.
Pets Can Divert Cycles Of Depression
Being lonely can make a person feel depressed and being depressed can lead you to isolate yourself from others, exacerbating the feelings of loneliness. If you feel like you’re in a never-ending cycle of depression, pet ownership can disrupt those cycles. The feeling of loneliness is difficult to overcome unless you seek out ways to not feel lonely. Some people simply aren’t socially active, so having a pet can be a constant reminder that you aren’t alone. And as a clinical psychologist states, animals know when their owners are in distress and they offer comfort when that happens.
It’s common for dog owners to get outside more than people who don’t own pets. Exposure to nature is critical to fighting depression, and it’s much easier to win the battle when you have an excited dog at the door wagging its tail ready to go for a walk. And the great thing about taking your dog for a walk is you never know what you’ll see or who you’ll meet that can help you reduce your depression even further. But even if nothing out of the norm happens, you’ll at least be able to enjoy the outdoors and help manage your depression a little easier.
Consider Traditional Therapies Like Wellbutrin With Pet Ownership
Overcoming things like depression, anxiety, stress, and other similar factors all come down to what works best for you. Sometimes owning a dog is all someone needs to reverse their mood and enjoy life more. Other people might need a combination of aids to help them overcome depression. Traditional therapies like taking Wellbutrin generic medication could be your answer, but it might not be completely effective on its own. Combining Wellbutrin generic medication with pet ownership offers an abundance of psychological benefits that can go a long way in helping you improve your mood.
Understand The Process Takes Time
Regardless of what methods you choose to help with your depression or anxiety, it’s important to understand the process takes time. You can’t simply take Wellbutrin generic medication one day and expect to be happier the next day. The same goes for owning a pet. The difference with pet ownership is it gives you a responsibility to care for the animal, which can divert your mind and attention from other things that might stress you out. Oftentimes people simply need to escape their own thoughts to improve their moods and that’s exactly what owning a pet can help with. Be patient and persistent and good things will come to you.