Depression is a poorly understood mental illness. Many people think of depression as a feeling of sadness, but it is much more than this. The word ‘depressed’ is bandied about today and this can dilute the meaning and significance of having depression. Living with somebody who has depression can be distressing and challenging, but there is help out there.
Spotting the signs of depression
Depression is much more serious than feeling down from time to time. Look out for signs such as a relative avoiding going out or suffering from mood swings. Does he or she seem distant or irritable? Have they lost their enthusiasm and zest for life? Do they feel down all the time and seem disinterested in getting up and going about normal day to day life? Depression is not something, which tends to come and go. It is often characterized by prolonged periods of feeling down, sad or helpless. In the most severe cases, it can cause people to consider suicide.
Helping a relative with depression
Depression can be difficult to deal with, especially in cases where an individual has no experience or knowledge of the issue. To many, it can seem like something that can be shaken off. Helping a relative can be tough, but support from a loved one can really make a difference. Letting a sibling or a parent know that they have a source of reassurance and a shoulder to cry on can aid recovery. Let her talk, listen to her and be there for her. Encourage him to open up and support him if he wants to chat to you. Urge him to get the help he needs. Research depression counselling from clinical psychologists. Offer to accompany a relative to their appointment.
People who are depressed often feel alone and isolated. Let a relative know they have loved ones looking out for them by leaving notes and calling regularly to check-in. Ensure them that you are contactable whenever they need and stick around for the long haul. Recovery may take a long time, but with the right support, a positive result can be achieved. For advice, contact mental health charities. Caring for somebody with depression can take its toll. Talking to somebody with experience in this area can be hugely beneficial for both parties.
Sometimes, a relative will feel more comfortable talking to somebody that they don’t know. Don’t be offended or put out. Just be there if and when they need advice or support.
Treatment for depression
There are various treatment for depression. Often, in milder cases, self-help techniques can help. Examples include exercise, meditation and spending time with friends. In more complex cases, medication and counselling are often recommended. Sometimes, a combination of different therapies is the most effective solution.
Coping with depression is difficult, but there are ways of helping others to overcome depression. Offer support, reassurance and time. Help a relative to get the assistance and treatment they need and don’t be afraid to ask for help if it all gets a little overwhelming.