**Please note that this piece has been written by one of our volunteer blog writers – all treatments and suggestions are his own opinions and experiences. Always seek medical and psychological attention should you feel any depression symptoms or are feeling unwell**

Depression (also known as major depressive disorder) is a common and serious medical illness that negatively affects how you feel, the way you think, and how you act. It causes feelings of sadness and/or a loss of interest in activities you once enjoyed and can lead to a variety of emotional and physical problems. It can also decrease your ability to function at work and at home.

According to the DSM-IV*, a medical reference commonly used by healthcare professionals to aid in diagnosis, a major depressive episode consists of many of the following symptoms, occurring nearly every day for at least two weeks:

-Depressed mood most of the day; feeling sad or empty, tearful

-Significant loss of interest or pleasure in activities that used to be enjoyable

-Significant weight loss (when not dieting) or weight gain; decrease or increase in appetite

-Difficulty sleeping or sleeping too much

-Agitation; or slowing down of thoughts and reduction of physical movements

-Fatigue or loss of energy

-Feelings of worthlessness or inappropriate guilt

-Poor concentration or having difficulty making decisions

-Thinking about death or suicide

If you suffer from any of these symptoms or emotions, worry not! The Bach Flower Remedies, an entirely natural means of therapy for primarily emotional problems, can help you manage and heal from depression! The following remedies are especially important to consider:

Mustard: The remedy for depression that comes and goes for no reason. It lifts of its own accord and when it occurs, you feel like you are enveloped in a black cloud of hopelessness.

Elm: The remedy for when you feel overwhelmed by responsibilities and can’t handle any newer responsibilities. This leads to depression and a sense of hopelessness.

Pine: The great remedy for any feelings of guilt for things that may or may not be your fault. Depression due to guilt can be helped by this remedy.

Gentian: This is the remedy for those who are easily discouraged. It is for sadness due to a known cause, such as loss of a loved one, divorce, loss of a job, accidents, etc. Even despondency due to minor setbacks call for this remedy.

Cherry Plum: The remedy for those who lack emotional control and have sudden depressive feelings characterized by a great fear that they might lose control of their emotions or actions. An excellent remedy to compose oneself and regain control of their emotions and feelings.

Larch: This is the go-to remedy for those who suffer from an inferiority complex, low self-esteem and a lack of confidence. Such people almost always suffer from a wholly unconscious melancholy, because they feel like they are not good or as capable as others. This is a great remedy to build confidence and dissolve depressive feelings.

Olive: This is a great remedy for those who are completely exhausted both mentally and physically. For those suffering from Chronic Fatigue Syndrome. It restores renewed vitality and energy to the person and fills him with hope and happiness.

Hornbeam: The remedy for the “Monday morning” feeling, when the day ahead seems too hard and you end up procrastinating. For those who have been totally exhausted mentally. This remedy adds new vitality and clarity to the mind.

White Chestnut: The remedy for those who suffer from a hyperactive mind, with repeated unwanted thoughts churning in their minds non-stop. This leads to depression and insomnia. The remedy can help bring tranquility and peace to the mind, and help with depressive feelings.

Aspen: The remedy for those who are anxious, nervous and scared all day long but don’t know why. They have a feeling that something bad is going to happen, but you cannot put a name on it. This groundless fear day and night can lead to depressive feelings which can be helped by this remedy.

Depression may be helped with the use of Bach Flower Remedies. The Bach Flower Remedies work on the emotional and Vitality levels, healing emotional disorders such as, depression, anxiety, jealousy, fears, trauma, self-confidence and impatience, among many other negative emotional conditions. The Bach Flower Remedies are 100% natural, so they are worth a shot!