How to help a friend or loved one with depression

How to help a friend or loved one with depression

 It is possible that one of your relatives, or your friends, is suffering from depression.
And if the situation is obviously very painful for those who are affected by this disease, it is also difficult for those around them.
This pathology is not easy to understand, because it generates a lot of uncertainty for the patient's entourage, and it is therefore difficult to know how to react.

What can you do ?

People who have loved ones with depression have a vital role to play in their pathology, thanks to the support they can offer.

For this, we must follow a few steps:

– Understand the disease and learn to recognize the symptoms

Depression is a pathology like any other, and its appearance depends on many factors and not the person in itself, as many erroneous popular beliefs claim. This therefore requires an accurate diagnosis, and appropriate treatment.
Health professionals are the only ones who can accurately diagnose whether or not a person suffers from depression, according to specific criteria.

The ideal is read books, to learn from serious sources, as well as to consult various professionals, so you can better understand what depression is, and thus be able to best help the people you care about.

Help the person to follow a suitable treatment

There are many treatments for treating depression. But despite this, the majority of people who suffer from it do not ask for help.
For this reason, we must help these people to find the treatment that suits them because:

– This disease is healing.
– Treatment reduces, with time, pain and suffering.
– The longer the disease, the more complications are numerous.
– Many serious consequences of depression, such as suicide attempt, can be prevented.

Your role, as a close friend, is to help the person follow the treatment adapted to their needs, in addition to trying to help them follow a healthy lifestyle (a good diet, regular exercises, etc.).

Support, without overwhelming or overprotecting

To be effective, the support must be exercised with a certain distance, without suffocating or overwhelming the sick person, simply by giving him affection and showing him understanding, and patience.

There is no point in overloading her with advice or orders, as this will increase her feelings of guilt and helplessness.

Depression is a disease, so it's useless to say "if I were you" or "I understand exactly how you feel".
Before you say anything, ask yourself if you would say these words to someone with flu or fever.

To appease people with depression, you can tell them that you understand their difficultiesthat they are absolutely not crazy, and that it is a disease that affects many people.

The person who suffers from depression is very sensitive about the offer of help and support. We must not be too maternal or indifferent, because she can feel quickly infantilized, or think herself totally useless and helpless.

It is important to know that depressed people get tired quickly as they struggle intensively against their mental fatigue and negative thoughts.
Do not demand too much effort from themnor force them to do things against their will.
You can motivate them with understanding and tenderness, and when they make an effort, it is essential to recognize and encourage them.

Finally, it is fundamental to maintain a open behavior, and not to discredit their feelings and emotions.
Keep them in the real world and give them hope for a better future.

Take care of yourself so you can be of better support.

Depression can be a long process, in which you will have to share the suffering of the person you love, and find the strength to offer all your support, support and tenderness. But, it is important not to exhaust yourself.

The person who suffers from depression has mostly negative thoughts, which are focused on themselves but also those around him. This can lead to a feeling of irritability, and sometimes rejection. We will give you some tips to consider in these situations:

– Do not feel responsible for the depression of the person you love. There is no culprit because this disease is due to the convergence of many factors (biological, psychological, etc.).

– When you feel helpless, or overwhelmed, you can seek help from professionals who can help the person affected by the illness, and guide them through the long process of recovery.

– If you tend to isolate yourself, remember that it is not good to be in a bubble for too long. Adapt to the situation, without putting aside all your projects.

Keep in mind that to take care of a person, you must also be in good health and pay attention to yourself.

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