A stressful lifestyle or an innate condition can lead to feelings of anxiety, depression, mental fatigue, and even suicidal thoughts. Naturally, this can significantly impede on a person’s emotional well-being. Because traditional therapies and medication treatments prove ineffective in a lot of cases, more and more people are adopting an emotional support animal (ESA) to remedy these common ailments. In essence, an ESA is a four-legged companion (dog, cat, rabbit, and more) whose role is to provide emotional assistance to their owner. They can be prescribed by a health professional, psychologist, or psychiatrist, and are subject to strict legislation. Here, we take a look at how an ESA can help relieve those suffering from mental disorders.
Just ask any pet owner out there; their furry companion is always there to get them through the tough times. As a matter of fact, many studies have shown that being in the presence of a domesticated pet, inside or outside the home, can be very soothing and reassuring by nature. They’re affectionate, easy to fall in love with, and will provide you with a comforting company whenever they’re around.
Particularly for the introverts and socially shy, an ESA will be a great companion. It’s perfectly normal for people to feel lonely and isolated, especially if you live alone, or have just recently moved to a new town. Now, when you go through the process of adopting an emotional support animal, you’re guaranteed to have a loyal companion who will always be there to support you, regardless of what mental challenges you’re facing.
Patients who have welcomed an ESA into their lives now have a healthy way to cope with their condition. They do so by simply being there; having a pet to look after, feed, bathe, and play with, is an effective remedy against boredom, inactivity, and negative feelings. Before that, however, the experts over at Therapetic recommend taking the time to assess whether you qualify for an ESA letter; consulting a specialized website to help guide you throughout the process is bound to maximize your chance of success.
Decrease Stress Level
Among the most compelling reasons for owning an ESA, or a house pet in general, is that they will naturally help you de-stress. In fact, the comfort and companionship they provide act on our brains by lowering blood pressure along with cortisol levels (stress-inducing hormone). This can boost your self-esteem and confidence. In many ways, an emotional support animal can help you overcome a lot of fears, such as being outdoors (agoraphobia), or even public speaking.
Reduce Anxiety and Depression
It’s no secret that millions of people silently suffer from debilitating anxiety and/depression. These common issues can affect a person’s daily life and prevent them from being productive, or committing to a schedule. As such, it’s been proven that owning an ESA can act as a source of reassurance and comfort, helping the patient feel safe and calm in all situations.
In a similar vein, an ESA can aid patients suffering from PTSD (post-traumatic stress disorder) and help them on their way back to a bright recovery. Whether it’s a military servant returning from the war, a person who’s suffered a major accident, near-death experience, or a natural disaster survivor, a four-legged companion can help those afflicted feel comforted, grounded, and in control.
Panic Attack Prevention
While it can’t be considered a medically viable cure, an emotional support animal may help relieve the severity and frequency of panic attacks for the people who are afflicted. It does so by reducing the anxiety that comes with countless life situations, helping the owner better manage his feelings and stress.
Give a Sense of Purpose
Lastly but most importantly, an ESA can create a sense of purpose for those suffering from isolation and depression. The act of caring for a pet, walking, feeding, and playing, encourages the owner to engage in various activities and keep busy. Also, it can increase the chance of socializing, meeting new people, and contribute to a healthier lifestyle physically, socially, and psychologically. Likewise, suicidal thoughts will be a thing of the past as you’ll remember that you have a pet who loves you and depends on you.
All in all, owning an emotional support animal can be a lifeline for the people who are dealing with a variety of mental and psychological disorders. If you’ve tried traditional therapies and treatments to no avail, you can go through the adoption process once your eligibility has been established, after which you’ll enjoy the love, comfort, and companionship these animals can provide.