I just had my first episode of depression so am in need of information.
My question: Is full recovery from depression possible? I realise that I may have more episodes over my lifetime but what about full recovery even if its between episodes.
Just my opinion, but this is the way that I see it. Your depression is being caused by the way you think and feel and problem solve. Your thinking and feeling distress was caused by your environment. Figure out what happened and what you need to change.
It varies by person, but yes, it is possible. I battled depression for most of my life (it got very severe when I was in college to the point where I was suicidal), I got on meds and it stabilized a bit, then I did get to a point where I no longer even felt the meds were necessary and was able to stop taking them and do just fine (this may not be everyone's experience, but I'm sure there are some others like me out there). I did a lot of work with cognitive behavior therapy before stopping meds to work on trying not to let everyday stuff drag me down. I'm not talking about truly horrible stuff that happens, but every day worries like finances, car troubles, stress at work. I realized when it came down to it, my life wasn't so horrible after all. You can just turn on the local news every night and find there are a lot of people who have it much worse than you do, and you should be grateful for what you do have. So I started working more on focusing on the positive things around me--like the sunset, the clouds, the birds, my cute little nephew, my wonderful husband. Every time I would think something negative about a situation, I'd work on finding at least 1 positive thing as well. And you won't believe, but it really goes a long way toward improving your mood. I think when your thoughts are all negative, you just drag yourself down into an abyss. I also exercise regularly, and that helps to keep my mood & outlook much brighter.
I know I may (and probably will) battle episodes of depression again in my life, but for now, things are good for me.
I think it's possible. In my opinion, the key is being aggressive. I believe that therapy is the most important treatment, but I would look at every available option. I would suggest a low sugar diet, avoiding oversleeping, having a good support system, and getting daily exercise.