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Advice for men coping with the mid-life crisis

The mid-life crisis may be considered a light hearted topic by the majority of people, but for some men this can be a distressing experience that can have a negative impact on their emotional state for years at a time.

Experts believe the condition is linked to brain or hormonal changes

The period of depression is often associated with males between the ages of 35 and 50 who reach a point where they begin to question their achievements, taking a negative view of what they've accomplished either at work or in their personal lives.

One of the problems with the male mid-life crisis is that there is little scientific knowledge of the issue, and attempts to treat the condition are not based on any wealth of definitive research.

But according to clinical psychologist Dr Derek Milne, helping men who are suffering depression as a result of the emotional turmoil caused by a mid-life crisis shouldn't necessarily rely on medication.

"[I would] recommend that you see a psychologist or counsellor and have it treated as a psychological condition and not through medication," he explained.

Indeed, with the issue being considered a psychological problem, Dr Milne advises that men suffering the symptoms of a mid-life crisis need to focus on the positive aspects of their life.

"Even if there are times when all you feel you can do is survive to the next day, the goal is thriving, and I believe that we do this best when we view our current crisis as a time of growth and personal change."

By viewing the condition as a natural part of getting older - one of life's challenges rather than a disease - Dr Milne believes that men can take a proactive approach to fighting off the mid-life crisis.

But it isn't only counselling or psychological treatments that can help overcome the depression associated with the condition, as lifestyle changes can have a beneficial impact too.

Exercise can release endorphins in the body which make people feel better about themselves, while maintaining a healthy diet and allowing yourself time to get plenty of sleep can also keep negative feelings at bay.

Avoiding the symptoms of a mid-life crisis is important to ensuring your general quality of life doesn't suffer, as depression and anxiety can have an impact in a variety of areas.

Whether it's causing tension in your relationship or making men lose confidence in the bedroom, the condition can start to have ramifications beyond how a man feels on a day-to-day basis.

This is why it's vital to tackle the issue head on, and if you find yourself consistently feeling very low for more than two weeks at a time it is advised that you seek medical help.

By recognising the symptoms of a mid-life crisis and taking the appropriate approach it is possible to overcome the condition without having to endure years of depression.