How Can I Help A Loved One Who Is Depressed
If someone you know has depression, help them see a health care provider or mental health professional. You also can:
- Offer support, understanding, patience, and encouragement.
- Invite them out for walks, outings, and other activities.
- Help them stick to their treatment plan, such as setting reminders to take prescribed medications.
- Make sure they have transportation to therapy appointments.
- Remind them that, with time and treatment, the depression will lift.
Take comments about suicide seriously, and report them to your loved ones health care provider or therapist. If they are in immediate distress or thinking about hurting themselves, call 911 for emergency services or go to the nearest hospital emergency room.
Avoid Feeding Your Depression
Feeding depression creates a snowball effect: For example, if you throw a few crumbs out on your balcony or sidewalk, a few pigeons will show up. If you keep throwing out crumbs, by the end of the week a multitude of pigeons will have flocked to the area. Similarly, depression thrives on doubts, fears, and negative thoughts which feeds more depression. Learn to identify the negative thoughts and worries that are fueling your depression so you can replace them with positive, more realistic thoughts.
Or Spend Time With Loved Ones
Depression can tempt you to isolate yourself and withdraw from your friends and family, but face-to-face time can help wash away those tendencies.
If youre unable to spend time together in person, phone calls or video chats can also be helpful.
Try to remind yourself these people care about you. Resist the temptation to feel like youre a burden. You need the interaction and they likely do, too.
When you do the same thing day after day, you use the same parts of your brain. You can challenge your neurons and alter your brain chemistry by doing something entirely different.
Research also shows doing new things can improve your overall well-being and strengthen your social relationships.
To reap these benefits, consider trying a new sport, taking a creative class, or learning a new cooking technique.
Knock out a few birds with one stone spending time with other people and doing something new by volunteering and giving your time to someone or something else.
You may be used to receiving help from friends, but reaching out and providing help may actually improve your mental health more.
Bonus: People who volunteer experience physical benefits, too. This includes a reduced risk of hypertension.
When you do something you love, or even when you find a new activity you enjoy, you may be able to boost your mental health more by taking time to be thankful for it.
Research shows gratitude can have lasting positive effects on your overall mental health.
Also Check: How Can You Know If You Are Depressed
Can Depression At Work Actually Be Burnout
Burnout happens when weve exhausted all our coping mechanisms. Its a state of mental, emotional and physical exhaustion from being exposed to prolonged stress. You become overwhelmed at work and constant demands. Youre left feeling that you cant cope or function normally.
Previously burnout was known as a nervous or mental breakdown. Know that however its referred to, its a temporary condition that can be treated and youll bounce back again.
When we reach a state of burnout, weve suffered from untreated anxiety, depression and fear for some time. You just cant cope or continue anymore. Some people have an emotional outburst, cry hysterically, just cant pull themselves out of bed or even flee.
When people take flight, they usually run from their situation without having any destination or intention in mind. Theyre just trying to escape their mental and emotional trauma.
Can Working From Home Cause Depression
Working from home, either permanently or partially each week, is becoming a reality for more and more people. While the added flexibility and home comforts can be beneficial to your mental health, it is not without its drawbacks.
Feelings of isolation can arise for those working from home especially if you also live on your own. A lack or physical communication with other human beings can quickly lead to feelings of sadness and depression. If you are working from home regularly, its really important to remain in contact with colleagues, both professionally and socially. Try to block out some time in your diary on a daily or weekly basis to have a chat over video conferencing the social aspects of human interaction can do wonders for your mental health.
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In Honor Of World Mental Health Day Let’s Talk Mental Health Solutions
October 10th was World Mental Health Day. I didn’t write about it yesterday because I was traveling, but I don’t want to skip over such an important day. 18.5 percent of American Adults suffer from some type of mental illness every year. That’s 43.8 million people or almost 1 in five. Take a look around your office. There’s a good chance that there are several people in your office who have some sort of mental illness right now and you’re not even aware. Of those, over 6 million are suffering from depression.
I’m one of those people. I have anxiety and depression which is well managed by medication. The downside? Medication makes me fat. But, since my choices are to be fat and happy or thin and an anxious depressed mess, I’ll take the plus size clothing, thanks. You wouldn’t know that I suffer from depression if you met me, by the way, even before I was on medication because I’m good at putting on a happy face. And chances are, there is someone at your office, or maybe you, who is also good at getting through life when she feels rotten.
If you’re depressed, you still have to go to work and earn money. It’s how it is. Plus, you need that health insurance more than ever! Some of the best tips I’ve ever read on functioning with depression come from Jennifer P, also known as, Captain Awkward in her 2013 article, “How to Tighten Your Game When You’re Depressed.” I strongly recommend reading the whole thing, but here are some of her ideas:
Ask for Help
Know That Today Isnt Indicative Of Tomorrow
Todays mood, emotions, or thoughts dont belong to tomorrow.
If you were unsuccessful at getting out of bed or accomplishing your goals today, remember that you havent lost tomorrows opportunity to try again.
Give yourself the grace to accept that while some days will be difficult, some days will also be great. Try to look forward to tomorrows fresh start.
Recommended Reading: Does Working Out Help With Depression And Anxiety
Has The Pandemic Affected Depression In The Workplace
According to the State of Mental health in America 2021 survey, the number of people seeking help for depression has increased significantly from 2019 to 2020.
The pandemic has led to many people working from home or seeing colleagues and clients less often, if at all. For many people, Zoom meetings are the new normal along with Zoom fatigue.
Not only are people feeling more anxious about their health, job security, and financial stability, says Matos, but many people are now more isolated and disconnected, which can trigger or worsen existing depression.
Indeed, the social element of work has disappeared for many people, making you feel lonely and even more low.
While working remotely can be convenient in some ways, it can also blur the boundary between personal and professional life even further.
can be really difficult to maintain focus and attention on a Zoom call when youre feeling depressed, says Matos.
You might also feel as if you have to work longer at home, especially if you havent accomplished enough, which creates a self-perpetuating problem: Your depression makes it hard to focus on work, so you work slower and less efficiently.
But then you force yourself to work longer, which worsens your mood and the cycle continues over and over.
If youre finding that depression is affecting your work life, there are many things you can do to gain a bit of motivation, rest, or relief throughout the day.
Tip : Eat A Healthy Depression
What you eat has a direct impact on the way you feel. Reduce your intake of foods that can adversely affect your brain and mood, such as caffeine, alcohol, trans fats, and foods with high levels of chemical preservatives or hormones .
Dont skip meals. Going too long between meals can make you feel irritable and tired, so aim to eat something at least every three to four hours.
Minimize sugar and refined carbs. You may crave sugary snacks, baked goods, or comfort foods such as pasta or French fries, but these feel-good foods quickly lead to a crash in mood and energy. Aim to cut out as much of these foods as possible.
Boost your B vitamins. Deficiencies in B vitamins such as folic acid and B-12 can trigger depression. To get more, take a B-complex vitamin supplement or eat more citrus fruit, leafy greens, beans, chicken, and eggs.
Boost your mood with foods rich in omega-3 fatty acids.Omega-3 fatty acids play an essential role in stabilizing mood. The best sources are fatty fish such as salmon, herring, mackerel, anchovies, sardines, tuna, and some cold-water fish oil supplements.
Read Also: What Medication Can Help Depression
My Anxiety & Depression At Work
Friday, 30 October 2015
Helen is a 999 call handler and blogs about her experience with anxiety and depression at work.
From a very early age Ive always wanted to work with the police. So when a job as a call handler came up I applied and got it first time. Ive been there ever since.
“…you dont even want to get out of bed, you just want to hide.”
When I first started the role we took non-emergency calls. A few years ago we started taking 999 calls too. The job is brilliant every day is different. You never know whats on the end of the phone when it rings.
Looking back, I can see signs of mental health issues started to appear when I was a teenager but nothing was really diagnosed until about 15 years ago. So I had a mental health problem before I started with the emergency services.
“…your mind is telling you that you want to hide and run away.”
It was around three years ago when I suffered panic attacks. I was feeling sick, not wanting to go into work. I had depression as well you dont even want to get out of bed, you just want to hide. I work in a room full of 30 or 40 people and I felt like I was the only person in there. You can feel so alone and you just want to hide in a cupboard. Its like youre in a little bubble.
“It was nerve-wracking going back after being off sick.”
“The more I have spoken about it…the more support I have gained.”
- If you are having problems at work, there is support out there for you.
Create A Wellness Toolbox
A wellness toolbox is a set of tools that you can use to help soothe yourself when you are feeling down.
The tools you find most helpful might not work for someone else so it’s important to carefully consider what things can help you feel your best.
Think of things you like to do when you’re happy. Then, when you’re feeling down, try one of those activities.
Cuddling your pet, listening to your favorite music, taking a warm bath, or reading a good book are just a few tools you might find helpful.
Create a list of the activities you might try when you’re feeling bad. Then, choose an activity to try when you’re having a particularly rough time.
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What If I Am Not Happy With My Treatment
If you are not happy with your treatment you can:
- talk to your doctor to see if they can suggest changes,
- get an advocate to help you speak your doctor,
- ask for a second opinion if you feel it would help,
- contact Patient Advice and Liaison Service and see whether they can help, or
- make a complaint.
There is more information about these options below.
An advocate is independent from the NHS. They are free to use. They can be useful if you find it difficult to get your views heard.
There are different types of advocates available. Community advocates can support you to get a health professional to listen to your concerns. And help you to get the treatment that you would like. They arent available in all areas.
You can ask an advocate to help you make a complaint. Advocates that do this are called NHS complaints advocates. They are free to use and don t work for the NHS. They re available in all areas.
You can search online to search for a local advocacy service. If you cant find a service you can call our advice service 0808 801 0525 . You can email us too at . We will look for you.
Talk to your doctor about your treatment to see if you can resolve the problem with them first. If you dont agree with their decisions about diagnosis or treatment, you could ask for a second opinion. You are not legally entitled to a second opinion, but your doctor might agree to it if it would help with treatment options.
- Advocacy by clicking here.
How Is Depression Treated
The first step to getting treatment is to see your GP. If your GP thinks you have depression, they will talk to you about the treatments they can offer.
What are talking therapies?
Talking therapy is a general term to describe any psychological therapy that involves talking. You may also hear the terms counselling or psychotherapy used to describe talking therapy.
Therapy should offer you a safe, confidential place to talk about your life and anything confusing, painful or uncomfortable. It allows you to talk with someone who is trained to listen attentively and to help you improve things.
Talking therapy often takes place face to face. But you may also be able to have therapy over the phone, by video call or online. There are different types of talking therapy that you might be offered. These include:
- cognitive-behavioural therapy,
- mindfulness based therapy, and
The type of therapy you are offered will depend on the cause of your symptoms and their severity. Therapies may also have different levels based on how long or intense the treatment is.
Ask your GP about therapy if you think it might help. Some of these therapies will be available in your area. Some areas offer a self-referral option for NHS talking therapies. Please refer to your local Improving Access to Psychological Therapies service to find out about this option.
You may also be able to access therapy privately or through your employer in an Employee Assistance Programme.
How can exercise help?
Read Also: Different Ways To Cope With Depression
Why Does Depression Cause Disability
Many people think the symptoms of depression are based largely with mood: lack of pleasure negative outlook and low self-esteem
This can be the case for someone with mild depression, which often responds quite well to talk therapy.
Severe depression is a different situation.
If you have severe depression, it can cripple your energy levels, your ability to focus, your appetite to fuel your body, and your sleep patterns.
There are profound biological changes that happen within you, including changes in hormone levels, sleep cycles, and brain structure.
When this happens, it can be impossible to get out of bed, much less have a productive eight-hour workday.
So if youre suffering from depression, your whole body is going through it as well.
What Treatment Should I Be Offered
The National Institute of Health and Care Excellence writes guidance on what treatment doctors should offer you. But your doctor does not have to give you these treatments. And the treatments may not be available in your area.
Different treatments may be available in your area. Your doctor might think these suit your symptoms more than the recommended treatments.
NICE recommend that depression is treated in different steps depending on how severe the condition is for you. The steps are as follows.
Step 1: Everyone who may have depression
Your doctor should offer you:
- an assessment of your symptoms,
- support, such as regular appointments in person or by telephone,
- information on how to deal with your symptoms,
- monitoring of your symptoms and follow-up, and
- referral for further assessment and treatment if needed.
Step 2: Mild to moderate depression
Your doctor may offer you:
- low-intensity interventions, such as self-help guided by the doctor or computerised cognitive behavioural therapy ,
- physical activity programmes,
- group cognitive behavioural therapy ,
- medication if you have a history of moderate or severe depression, or you have had symptoms for a long time, and
- referral for further assessment and treatment if needed.
Step 3: Moderate to severe depression, or mild to moderate depression when other treatments havent worked
Your doctor may suggest:
Step 4: Severe and complex depression or if your life is at risk Your doctor may suggest:
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Improve Your Sleep Hygiene
Sleep and mood are intimately related. A 2014 study found that 80% of people with major depressive disorder experience sleep disturbances.
But, you might feel like you just can’t fall asleep. Or perhaps you struggle to get out of bed because you feel exhausted all the time.
Good sleep hygiene could be key to improving the quality and quantity of your sleep.
Turn off electronics at least an hour before you go to bed. Use dim light to read a book or engage in another relaxing activity.
Only use your bed for sleep and sexual activity. Doing work in bed, or even in your bedroom, can cause you to associate your bed with stress, rather than relaxation.