Depression medication can help more than you think

Depression Medication Can Help More Than You Think

A lot of people think depression is a made up concept, but that's far from the truth.

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A surprising amount of college students can say they have depression or anxiety, but a lot of older generations think the idea is just a Millennial creation. However, depression and anxiety are very serious. Just as you can catch a cold or break a bone, your brain can get sick. It is, after all, just another organ. As someone who has struggled with depression, I can vouch that it is nowhere near just a "made up" thing. If curing depression was as simple as "just being happy," no one would be depressed (as if anyone chooses to be depressed, to begin with).

Depression is a void that can suck you in at any moment. One day you're feeling great about yourself and life, then suddenly a bad thought fleets across your mind for the smallest second of time. That's all it takes as your spiral down starts. By nighttime, you can be in a full suicidal/hopeless episode. It's that simple. And once the thoughts start, they don't stop. I thought this was just the new me: that being depressed and hopeless and tired and apathetic was the new me and there was no hope for me because I was too far gone.

I opened up to parents and finally saw someone who could help me and offer me medication. I was hesitant to try medication because everyone says that it takes about 6 months to kick in and I didn't even know if I had that long to hold on to this seemingly bleak life.

Within two weeks, I noticed a change. I went for my check-in after starting my medication and realized that I only had one bad day and it didn't even last a full 24 hours, in the ENTIRE two-week span! Usually, I would be in a depressive episode for at least four days before I started to climb back out. And even then the breaks of "content" and "okay" were few and far between and never lasted long. I realized that I was feeling better and that I was happy.

But, I wasn't just happy. Even on bad days (because we all have bad days, regardless of medication and mental state), I never spiraled out of control, I was simply bummed for a bit and then got on with life.

I never thought the day would come for me to be able to feel this way again. I was recently showing a new friend some old photos of me and I showed her one from four years ago. She said, "You look different. Like, your face just looks different somehow." And I realized it was because I was happy in that photo. My eyes were crinkling with a true smile, my dimples and smile lines in full view for everyone, and that my smile wasn't forced. I looked so different because I was so much happier. And thinking that almost made me want to cry because I could never see myself being that happy again.

For anyone else who feels the same, even in the slightest bit, go see a professional. You'd be amazed how much better you can feel.

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Everything You Will Miss If You Commit Suicide

The world needs you.
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You won't see the sunrise or have your favorite breakfast in the morning.

Instead, your family will mourn the sunrise because it means another day without you.

You will never stay up late talking to your friends or have a bonfire on a summer night.

You won't laugh until you cry again, or dance around and be silly.

You won't go on another adventure. You won't drive around under the moonlight and stars.

They'll miss you. They'll cry.

You won't fight with your siblings only to make up minutes later and laugh about it.

You won't get to interrogate your sister's fiancé when the time comes.

You won't be there to wipe away your mother's tears when she finds out that you're gone.

You won't be able to hug the ones that love you while they're waiting to wake up from the nightmare that had become their reality.

You won't be at your grandparents funeral, speaking about the good things they did in their life.

Instead, they will be at yours.

You won't find your purpose in life, the love of your life, get married or raise a family.

You won't celebrate another Christmas, Easter or birthday.

You won't turn another year older.

You will never see the places you've always dreamed of seeing.

You will not allow yourself the opportunity to get help.

This will be the last sunset you see.

You'll never see the sky change from a bright blue to purples, pinks, oranges, and yellows meshing together over the landscape again.

If the light has left your eyes and all you see is the darkness, know that it can get better. Let yourself get better.

This is what you will miss if you leave the world today.

This is who will care about you when you are gone.

You can change lives. But I hope it's not at the expense of yours.

We care. People care.

Don't let today be the end.

You don't have to live forever sad. You can be happy. It's not wrong to ask for help.

Thank you for staying. Thank you for fighting.

Suicide is a real problem that no one wants to talk about. I'm sure you're no different. But we need to talk about it. There is no difference between being suicidal and committing suicide. If someone tells you they want to kill themselves, do not think they won't do it. Do not just tell them, “Oh you'll be fine." Because when they aren't, you will wonder what you could have done to help. Sit with them however long you need to and tell them it will get better. Talk to them about their problems and tell them there is help. Be the help. Get them assistance. Remind them of all the things they will miss in life.

If you or someone you know is experiencing suicidal thoughts, call the National Suicide Prevention Hotline — 1-800-273-8255

Cover Image Credit: Brittani Norman

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Florida Is Starting To Rethink The Whole Reefer Madness Narrative And I'm Diggin' It

It's a dope change of pace.

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Governor Ron DeSantis signed a bill that will allow people with medical marijuana cards to smoke weed legally and, personally, I think it's dope.

I didn't even know people with medical cards in Florida couldn't actually smoke the weed they were prescribed until earlier this year. My friend who suffers from lupus just started smoking hers after the bill was passed. The stinky plant comes in a prescription pill bottle and she's supposed to vaporize it, kind of like a humidifier. I went with her to a dispensary (no laws were broken, I waited in the lobby) and she explained the whole process behind it. Apparently, there's a lot of ways people consume weed. There's cannabis pills, edibles, patches, dab pens, the list goes on. Like, what?

I mean, that's cool and all, but I couldn't wrap my brain around it. What's the problem with the act of smoking? The end goal has the same effects. Granted, it can mess with your lungs, but cigarettes are legal. Vapes are legal. Think about it: the things that are actually legal to smoke don't have any positive effects. Do you see the disconnect?

I still don't fully understand the negative stigma behind weed. Yes, it does for sure mess with your memory and yes, we don't know a lot about it in general so it's hard to say the drug is 100% safe. But then again, JUULs are legal and we don't even know those long term effects. There are so many awful drugs the FDA has approved and yet, they can't get fully on board with weed. Xanax is a highly addictive, dangerous as hell drug if it's abused and it's rarely monitored. Some doctors hand it out like candy. Even Tylenol is awful.

No one has died from weed. How many people have died from alcohol poisoning? I'm just saying you never hear about a stoner overdosing on weed—it's just not a thing.

What we do know about weed is that it does have some positive effects on people's health and it can actually help those in real pain. Even people with cancer are suggested to smoke weed to help with their symptoms, so what's the issue? I'm glad Florida is starting to recognize that this stigma is old-fashioned and is starting to move away from the devil's lettuce narrative.

I'm not saying everyone should dress head to toe in weed paraphernalia and spark a blunt in the middle of Downtown, Orlando (although, that would be interesting to watch) and I am not condoning any illegal use of marijuana, but I think the Reefer Madness mindset is extremely outdated. People who actually need weed for medical issues are not using it recreationally, so any prior beef with Mary Jane should not affect their health.

Florida is finally making changes for those who medically need it and it's lit.

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