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Unfortunately, One in four of us will experience some mental health issue such as depression – even if we are not affected, there are big chances that someone close to us maybe. In this post, I will go over five do’s and don’ts to support someone with depression.
Just know that there are many signs when it comes to depression. Some of those include unusual sadness, low mood, disturbed sleep, not taking pleasure in things they used to do, and or feelings of worthlessness. just keep these in mind. and with that said, let’s get to the five dos and don’ts
5 DO’s when it comes to depression
Keep in touch – sometimes, even if you are super busy, a weekly call or just a simple text is all they need. Let them know that they are not alone, and they can get in touch with you if they need to talk.
Encourage them to get out – A quick walk can be a great way to lift their spirits and enable them to talk if they want to. But avoid drinking as much as you can as alcohol can make depression worse.
Ask them how they look after themselves – whether there’s anything you can do to help them, such as finding a counselor or looking after their things while they go to therapy.
Listen properly – Just let them talk – and cry if they need to – this can be priceless. You don’t need to have answers for everything; as a matter of fact, don’t give them any answers, just a lesson.
Give them time – Giving someone time and space to talk is one of the most supportive things anyone can do.
With that out of the way, let’s get to are 5 Don’ts
Tell them to pull themselves together or snap out of it – they would if they could.
Don’t Point out all the positives in their life – Depression is an illness that makes it very difficult for people to feel hopeful or optimistic, and telling them to count their blessings is likely to make them feel guilty and ashamed.
Do not Pressure them to talk about their mental health all the time – Let them know they can if they want to – that’s crucial – but remember, only getting them out of the house or talking about other things may be just as helpful.
Assume they’re better after a few weeks or months – Even if someone seems brighter for a while, this doesn’t necessarily mean their depression has gone for good. Depression can be long-term, and some people are susceptible to recurring bouts of depression. Those who suffer from the seasonal affective disorder (SAD) will also tend to feel very low and lethargic during the winter months.
Do not say, “It could be worse” – Comparisons to other people fighting other battles are rarely useful. When a depressed person reaches out for social support, they are looking for empathy and compassion.
The most important thing you can do is let them know you’re there for them – it can be beneficial having someone to talk to who isn’t a family member or a very close friend. But try not to analyze or ‘fix’ them yourself; while you may want to help, you’re (probably) not a trained mental health professional.
Remember to look after your well-being too. It may be worth talking to a counselor if you’re struggling to cope with their illness, or it has brought up some difficult issues for you.
Understanding depression in a friend or family member
- Depression is a serious condition.
- The symptoms of depression aren’t personal.
- Hiding the problem won’t make it go away.
- Your loved one isn’t lazy or unmotivated.
- You can’t “fix” someone else’s depression.
SAMHSA’s National Helpline – 1-800-662-HELP (4357)
SAMHSA’s National Helpline is a free, confidential, 24/7, 365-day-a-year treatment referral and information service (in English and Spanish) for individuals and families facing mental and/or substance use disorders.
If you or a loved one are struggling with depression, contact the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA) National Helpline at 1-800-662-4357 for information on support and treatment facilities in your area.For more mental health resources, see our National Helpline Database.
Coronavirus advice; Get advice about coronavirus and looking after your mental wellbeingEvery Mind Matters: how to look after your mental wellbeing while staying at home
Mind: Coronavirus and your wellbeing
3 Minute Depression Test
This depression quiz is based on the Depression Screening Test developed by Ivan Goldberg, MD, the founder of Psycom who was also a renown psychiatrist.psycom.net