Depression afflicts an estimated 16 million people in America, based on 2012 figures from The National Institute for Mental Health. This means that 6.9 percent of Americans had one or more major depressive episodes during that calendar year.

Depression is real and it needs to be treated, with a mind to restoring mental well-being. Therefore, the key to getting better is taking action. While people who are very depressed may have a lot of trouble getting proactive by seeking out the right medical treatment and/or therapy, they will greatly benefit from doing so.

If you’re depressed, telling a doctor how you’re feeling will be the best way to access the help that you need. Doctors may prescribe anti-depressants, refer patients to specialists (such as psychiatrists or psychologists) and also explore the possibility of links between depression and underlying health issues (such as hypothyroidism).

Our best advice is to recommend that you see your doctor today. It’s the key to unlocking so much invaluable assistance and it’s also the key to getting fast relief from the symptoms of depression (sadness, anxiety, sleeping too much or not enough, weight loss or gain, etc.)

While some forms of depression may be resistant to treatment, most people do respond to antidepressants and/or therapy. You probably will, too.

How to Help Depression: Why Does Depression Happen?

Life is tough. Depression may have a genetic component. Sometimes, people with underlying mental health disorders, such as Bipolar Disorder, get very depressed. Bipolar disorder often runs in families.

However, more often than not, the cause of depression is related to dealing with the ups and downs of life. When things aren’t going well for us, we may find that our mood plummets and that we stay “blue” for long time periods.

Everyone feels sad or down sometimes. Depression is more serious as it doesn’t go away on its own too often. Once someone sinks into the negative mindset that accompanies depression, they find it very hard to get out. Their brains aren’t producing the feel-good chemicals that happier people produce and this sets the stage for the feeling of being “in a black hole” or “in quicksand”.

How to Help Depression

How to Help Depression: Depression is Very Serious

Depression is truly a terrible thing and it may lead to work difficulties, disability, failed relationships or even suicide. If you feel suicidal, please call a suicide helpline immediately. You may contact the non-profit National Suicide Prevention Lifeline at 1-800-273-TALK (8255).

Also, understand that your depression is playing tricks on your mind and making things seem worse than they are. When you get appropriate treatment, suicidal ideation may cease.

How to Help Depression: Believe In Your Future

You deserve to be happy. By taking to a licensed physician today, you’ll be able to find the light at the end of the tunnel. A simple trip to the doctor is all that it takes. So, please visit your family doctor as soon as possible. As well, if you need support, consider finding a support group in your community or an online support group. Talking to others who are going through the same thing may help you to gain perspective.

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