What is depression?
We all experience feelings of low mood time to time. Depression is when you feel low for a very long time, and this affects your day to day life. Anyone can get depression, or become depressed. About 1 in 10 people have it.
It is important to remember it is not your fault if you experience depression. People do not choose to feel low.
Depression is not:
- Something you can “snap out of”
- A sign of weakness
- Something everyone experiences
- Something that will last forever
Depression does not have one main cause. Factors such as past experiences, diet, drug/alcohol use, brain chemicals, genetics can all increase the risk of someone developing depression.
- Feeling low, irritable or anxious
- Having less energy
- Loss of interest in things you used to enjoy
- Poor concentration
- Feeling guilty or worthless
- Tiring easily
- Poor sleep patterns
- Eating more, or less than usual
- Fearing or thinking the worst will happen
- Muscle aches/ headaches
Many of these overlap with symptoms of anxiety, it is not uncommon to experience both anxiety and depression together. Make a note of your own to help recognise when you are feeling low.
- Talk to someone you trust
- Focus on your breathing
- Distract yourself with something comforting
- Listen to music, or go for a walk or run
- Make a note of the positive thoughts you have
- Eat healthily
- CBT helps you understand the links between your thoughts, feelings and behaviour. It helps you to overcome your low mood by challenging negative thoughts and beliefs.
- Behavioural Activation focuses on encouraging people to approach activities that they are avoiding. This helps refocus on future goals.
- Medication can also help; speak to your GP if you think this could help you.
- Your Mindworks Surrey worker can talk through these options with you.
- No Panic: 0844 9674848 or 0330 6061174 (13 to 20 Years old, 3 to 6pm, Monday to Friday)
- Samaritans: 116 123 (Freephone open 24/7)
- Support Line: 01708 765200
- SANE: 0300 304 7000 (4:30 to 10pm daily)
- Cruse Bereavement: 0808 808 1677
- Anxiety UK: 08444 775774 (Monday to Friday, 9:30 to 5:30)
- Mind Charity
- Rethink Mental Illness
- Depression UK
- KOOTH: Free, safe and anonymous online support for young people (11-19 years)