Mental Health Awareness Month: If someone close to you is suffering from depression, you need to be a good listener to them. Scroll down to find out more.
Mental health is an extremely important topic, but it is considered taboo and most of us avoid discussing it. Despite growth and modernization in different parts of the world, speaking out or speaking out about mental health conditions is considered taboo. The National Institutes of Health state that mental illness is common in the United States. It is estimated that more than one in five American adults are living with a mental illness (57.8 million in 2021).
The World Health Organization estimates that depression is one of the leading causes of disability. Suicide is the fourth leading cause of death among youth ages 15-29. People with severe mental health conditions die prematurely up to two decades earlier due to preventable physical conditions.
Depression is a mood disorder that causes a persistent feeling of sadness and loss of interest, which also interferes with day-to-day activities. Also known as depressive disorder or clinical depression, it affects the way you feel, think, and behave and can lead to a variety of emotional and physical problems. You may have trouble doing normal day-to-day activities, and at times you may feel life isn’t worth living, says the Mayo Clinic.
symptoms of depression
Feelings of sadness, crying, emptiness, or hopelessness
Outbursts of anger, irritability, or frustration, even over unimportant things
Loss of interest or pleasure in most or all normal activities, such as sex, hobbies, or sports
Sleep disturbances, including insomnia or sleeping too much
Tiredness and lack of energy, so even small tasks require extra effort
Reduced appetite and weight loss or increased food cravings and weight gain
Anxiety, agitation, or restlessness
Slow thinking, speech, or body movements
Feelings of worthlessness or guilt, obsession with past failures, or self-blame.
Trouble thinking, concentrating, making decisions, and remembering things
How to help someone suffering from depression
1. Good listener
If someone close to you is suffering from depression, you need to be a good listener to them. People suffering from depression usually require constant support and someone to listen to them. Listening is the most important part of starting to help. People with depression may not be able to start the conversation on their own, so you need to make them feel comfortable talking.
2. Help find the right treatment
The most common and correct approach to help someone suffering from depression should be to access therapy or treatment. They may not be in the right frame of mind to help themselves, so try to find the right treatment for your condition.
3. Take care
Healthline claims that if you put all your energy into supporting your friend, you will have very little left for yourself. And if you feel exhausted or frustrated, you won’t be much help to your friend.
(Disclaimer: This article is for informational purposes only. It is not a substitute for professional advice, diagnosis, or treatment.)