The causes, The symptoms and Tips to manage Depression

Depression can make the simplest of tasks seem like a huge mountain to climb. We don’t enjoy the things we used to. We feel lonely among friends and in turn isolate ourselves more.

What causes depression?

There is no one cause of depression and everyone experiences it differently. Some of the known causes are painful or stressful events experienced in the past or present, biological make up, family history, drug and alcohol use.

What are the symptoms?

Some of the symptoms experienced during periods of depression are low mood, lack of motivation, fatigue, tearfulness, inability to make decisions, irritability and loss of enjoyment of usual interests and hobbies.

What can you do?

Attempt small manageable tasks even for ten minutes at a time. If you take on too much this can lead to overwhelm and increase feelings of hopelessness.

  • Exercise. Even if you don’t feel like it small bouts of aerobic exercise can increase the feel good hormones in your body lifting your mood.
  • Create a list of small activities that you enjoy. Some examples are baking, puzzles, watching an episode of a serious that you like – maybe even something humourous. Aim to do one of these daily.
  • Take some time relax. Relaxation is different for everyone so it is important to discover what relaxes you. It could be reading a chapter from a book, listening to a podcast, or talking a walk in nature or looking after a pet.
  • Reconnect with people. Build a support network for yourself. Meet up regularly with a family member or friend that you enjoy the company of.
  • Sleep. Lack of sleep will exacerbate the feelings of depression. Try to get between 7 and 9 hours of sleep a day.
  • Diet. Try to eat small balanced meals throughout the day to keep your energy up.
  • Reduce the stressors in your life. If you have taken on too much at work or at home draw on your support network and ask for help.
  • Seek the help of a professional. Talk to your GP and/or contact us here at Bath Avenue Counselling.

During depressive episodes it may feel like it won’t get better, and the mountain is too hard to climb. By making some small gradual changes and with the adequate support it can improve.

Lynsey O’Kelly