Silver Lining

A loving community finding the silver lining.

How to Help Someone With Depression

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Depression affects millions of individuals of various ages across the world – in the US alone, that number is 14.8 million. Due to its prevalence, it’s likely that you know a family member or friend or will someday meet someone with this condition. It may seem a daunting task to deal with someone who has depression, especially if it’s someone you love or care about greatly. You might feel frustrated, helpless, angry, or guilty, and that’s okay. Helping someone with depression is no easy task, but here are some tips that can make the process more manageable.

 

The first step to helping a depressed friend or family member is understanding how depression works. Granted, it’s not possible to know and comprehend everything your friend is feeling, nor is depression exactly the same in each person. There are, however, some basic things that are true across the board:

 

  • Depression should not be taken lightly. It is definitely a serious condition that, if not addressed, can have huge repercussions. Avoid telling your friend to just “snap out of it” or to look on the bright side, as this will be very difficult if not impossible for them to do.
  • It’s the depression talking. A depressed person will often say hurtful or rude things that they actually don’t mean, so don’t take things too personally if they lash out at you.
  • Don’t hide the problem. If you make excuses for the depressed person and try to cover up the fact that they aren’t feeling well, you might actually be making things worse. This can indicate to your depressed friend that his/her condition is not significant and prevent him/her from seeking help.

 

  • Their depression is not your fault, nor is it theirs. You’re not responsible for the way your loved one feels, nor is it their fault for not being strong enough. In the end, their recovery is in their own hands, not in yours, although your support and kindness will definitely help them recover faster.

 

Now that you have a better understanding of the workings of depression, here are some things you can do for your loved one:

 

  • Communication is key. Let your loved one know that you care about and want to help them, and make yourself available should they need you. Offer to do their groceries for them or call them just to check up on how they’re doing (if they don’t respond, be sure to leave a voice message). For someone with depression, knowing that someone cares can make a huge difference.
  • Listen. Sometimes, your loved one might just want someone to listen, and that’s enough. You don’t have to try to fix their problems, just pay attention to what they are saying and show compassion.
  • Encourage them to seek help. With all the mental health stigma around these days, many people might feel embarrassed about seeking therapy or medicine for their condition, and that’s a shame. If your loved one feels uneasy about seeking professional help, you can suggest helping them find a doctor and going with them to the first visit.
  • Take care of yourself. Dealing with a depressed individual can be draining, so make sure you’re not neglecting your personal needs. Set your boundaries and make sure your own life stays on track. If your loved one says something that upsets you, don’t be afraid to gently let them know how you feel. Finally, find your own group of supportive friends and family to help you help your loved one.

 

 

Sources

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Depression: Dysthymia

Definition: A mood disorder consisting of the same cognitive and physical symptoms of depression, symptoms that are less severe but last longer. Also known as chronic depression.

 

Symptoms: Since Dysthymia is a mild but chronic form of clinical depression, the symptoms are similar and somewhat less severe, as listed below.

  • Loss of interest in daily activities and things you once enjoyed
  • Lack of energy
  • Trouble concentrating
  • Irritability
  • Feelings of hopelessness, worthlessness, and emptiness
  • Difficulty sleeping or altered appetite

 

Statistics:

  • 67.5% of Americans with dysthymia are receiving treatment
  • 1.5% of adults are affected by dysthymia
  • 11.2% of 13-18 year olds are affected by dysthymia

 

How to Feel Better:

  • Getting an effective treatment: by psychotherapy (talk therapy) or antidepressants
  • Ask doctor about healthy lifestyle habits
    • Balanced diet
    • Getting regular exercise
    • Avoiding alcohol and smoking
    • Being close with family and friends for strong social support

 

Sources:

http://www.nimh.nih.gov/health/statistics/prevalence/dysthymic-disorder-among-adults.shtml

http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmedhealth/PMHT0024769/

http://www.webmd.com/depression/guide/chronic-depression-dysthymia?page=3#1

 

Become Even Awesomer: Love Yourself

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Love yourself and don’t get down. You are incredible and I love you so much.

How to become a “Kool Kat” aka awesomer 😀 (from Wanderlust)

#1: You are amazing just the way you are, so love yourself.

Are you depressed and want to commit suicide? Bullies telling you that your ugly? Or just feeling down? Don’t kill yourself, don’t believe them. Why? Because you are the beautiful, talented, unique, wonderful, amazing, you. you are wonderful just the way you are. Don’t let a bully tell you different, or to change. Don’t be depressed because you are you. You are you. You are beautiful, talented, unique, and you are.. you. We’re all wonderful just the way we are. You are beautiful inside and out. Don’t change yourself just because someone said to. You are the amazing you. If someone doesn’t like you, then they don’t deserve you. You are amazing, and don’t you let anyone or anything tell you different. Same for all these fearless victors who overcame bullying. Heck, everyone, this is the same for you. It doesn’t matter if you are a person, a teenager, an adult, it doesn’t matter if you are even a panda bear. This is the same for you. You are all what I just typed. Even if a bully thinks different, that’s just because they are jealous of you, of how amazing,beautiful,inspiring,wonderful,strong,and talented you are.

#2: ‘Different’ really just means the same

Is there someone in your school who has a disability? Someone who likes something you don’t? Don’t go with the ‘flow’, ‘trend’, or whatever the bullies have started to hurt that person. Don’t. Because even though they think that they are ‘different’, as different as night and day, or whatever, they can’t see. They are blind to the fact that you are exactly the same. Think about it. Your human, a student, around the age group, in the same school, lives in the same state, wonderful,amazing,beautiful just like you. Heck, they live on the same planet, in the same universe. So why do you choose to bully them when they are just like you. Go over to that person and talk to them. You don’t have to be friends, but hey you get extra pug points when you do. You may have similar interests! You aren’t at all different. And you know what? One day you are going to stand up against the bullies with those people. Because you are all the awesome, amazing, wonderful, inspiring, and beautiful you.

#3: Don’t smoke, its a joke

Don’t smoke, its a joke! Don’t drink, you have to rethink! Don’t do drugs, wouldn’t you rather pet pugs? Or give hugs? Drinking, smoking, and drugs are just things that are obstacles. No matter what people say, don’t do them. They’ll change your life, in a bad way. Its not the right path. Don’t do any of the following: drugs, achoholic drinks, cigarettes. Wouldn’t you rather choose the path that leads to a bright future ahead of you?

#4: If you believe you can achieve

Do you not think you can get straight A’s because your math grade is almost to an F? Don’t give up! If you believe you can achieve! Just keep thinking to yourself ‘I will get straight A’s’ or whatever. Soon enough, if you try hard and remember your goal, your bad grade will change to an A+!

#5: Congrats kool kat

You are officially awesomer 😀 Check out the original post!

Source: PSA: HOW TO BE A KOOL KAT (PLEASE REBLOG!)


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Major (Clinical) Depression

Definition: a mood disorder characterized by persistent feelings of sadness.

Symptoms:

  • feelings of sadness, hopelessness, and emptiness
  • loss of interest in things you once enjoyed
  • significant weight loss/gain without any attempt to do so
  • insomnia or increased need to sleep
  • slowed behavior or restlessness that is obvious
  • constant fatigue
  • feelings of worthlessness, guilt
  • trouble making decisions and/or concentrating
  • thoughts of suicide or self harm – please get help as soon as you can! You are loved and help is available; there are many people who can and want to help you feel better. 🙂

Statistics:

  • Prevalence: very common; more than 3 million cases a year in the United States alone.
  • One in eight teens has clinical depression; so do one in thirty-three children.
  • The median onset of depression is 32, but anyone from young children to senior adults can get it.

How to feel better:

  • Foster Relationships: reach out to people you trust, such as a parent or close friend, and tell them how you feel. If you don’t feel like you can trust anyone you know, there are plenty of online resources and telephone hotlines (1 (800) 273-8255) you can use to talk to professionals who are trained to help people like you.
  • Exercise: Even if you don’t feel like it, try to get yourself moving, whether you’re taking a walk or playing a game of basketball with a friend. Research has shown that exercise fights depression as well as some antidepressants.
  • Beat Negative Thinking: It’s okay to make mistakes; no one is perfect, and that’s perfectly fine. Surround yourself with positive people and drop perfectionism. You can also try keeping a log of positive things that happen to you every day to help yourself think more positively.
  • Hobbies: Do things you enjoy (or used to enjoy), such as a sport or other activity. Even if you don’t feel like doing it at the moment, you might be pleasantly surprised by how you feel afterwards. Doing something will also keep your mind busy and rouse you from your low.
  • Laugh: While it might seem overly simple, laughing or even just smiling has been shown to scientifically increase your happiness. Watch a funny TV show or some cute baby animal videos on Youtube.
  • Professional Help: When all else fails, don’t be afraid to seek out professional help. Seeing a psychiatrist isn’t shameful – it’s smart. You’re getting the help you need and deserve, and you’ll feel better soon.

 

Addition Links and Sources for this Article:

Hotline (call for instant professional help 24/7): 1 (800) 273-8255

8 Foods to Fight Depression and Feel Better!

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I love eating. I also love being happy. Let’s eat and be happier!

Turkey: Turkey has high levels of the chemical tryptophan, which stimulates the production of serotonin, a feel-good neurotransmitter. It’s also very yummy, so why not? Try being thankful as you eat turkey too 🙂 #thanksgiving

Walnuts: Walnuts are high in omega-3, which supports your overall brain health. Healthy brains equals a more healthy you!

Fatty fish: Mackerel, tuna, salmon, and bluefish are all fatty fishes that are high in omega-3, which has certain properties that fight depression. It also improves your overall circulation and heart health. When you eat these yummy sea creatures, you decrease your overall risk for heart disease and gain a happy mind.

Low fat dairy: Skim milk, yogurt (I love me some fro-yo), and low-fat cheese all have lots of calcium, vitamin D, and proteins that make you feel well and relaxed. Thank you cows for your wonderful feel-good milk.

Whole grains: Fiber and complex carbs help release serotonin in the body, making you a happier person. Eat healthy, feel healthy, be happy.

Green Tea: Antioxidants and theanine, an amino acid that promotes relaxation, make green tea the drink to drink! Skip the coffee and drink a cup of hot green tea instead.

Turmeric: This lovely spice found in Indian and Asian curry dishes has anti-inflammatory properties, giving you a spice to life! Woo! I wish I came up with this pun… haha everydayhealth.com is pro.

Dark Chocolate: Craving the yummy goodness of chocolate? On top of it’s taste-bud benefits, dark chocolate also releases serotonin and relaxes blood vessels. Feel guilt free as you break off a little piece of heaven.

What are you waiting for? Head to your local supermarket or to your kitchen and fight that depression with your tummy. I’m proud of you. But remember to eat in moderation, or you will have to fight off a few pounds as well :). And if you’re not fighting depression, these foods also boost your mood!
Source: http://www.everydayhealth.com/depression-pictures/8-foods-that-fight-depression.aspx