Some people struggle with feelings of anxiety and depression. Dogs have been shown to help those suffering from these quite a bit. The support they provide is why dogs are commonly registered as emotional support animals. This allows them to travel with their owners on airplanes and to certain areas. Here are some of the ways that an ESA support dog can help a person.
Physical contact has a major impact on how a person feels. When a person experiences physical contact, such as a hug, it produces neurotransmitters, such as dopamine. These neurotransmitters increase a person’s feeling of happiness and lessen anxiety. Dogs enjoy this type of contact as they’ll cuddle and lick their owner. This affection will increase the positive feelings in a person that’s depressed or anxious, causing them to feel better. This type of contact is especially helpful in stressful situations, such as on an airplane.
People suffering from depression can get caught up in a vicious cycle. As they remain alone, they feel isolated from others, which only worsens their depression. They are also afraid of being judged by others so they get trapped. A dog is a great way to break this cycle. The pet will be a constant companion, always being around. People dealing with anxiety or depression often have a fear of being judged. A dog will never be judgemental about you, allowing you to experience the benefits of having a companion while avoiding the fear of judgment.
Social anxiety is a problem that affects millions of people. They might fear going out in public and meeting with other people. If they do go out in public, they might be too afraid to approach people, causing them to remain by themselves. A dog can serve two purposes for people suffering from social anxiety. They can help a person build their confidence up when it comes to being in contact with others and they can draw people to them. If a person suffering from social anxiety wants to meet people but is afraid, a dog will draw people closer as they’ll want to pet it. This will strike up a conversation and allow the person to form a group of friends.
Dogs are able to provide a tremendous amount of emotional support for a person. These are some of the ways that an ESA support dog can help a person that is dealing with anxiety or depression.