Do you feel dejected, hopelessly helpless and abandoned? Or do you think there is no solution to your problem(s) or feel nothing good can come out of you?  What you feel is what is known as depression. Depression is an illness characterized by persistent sadness and a loss of interest in activities that you normally enjoy, accompanied by an inability to carry out daily activities, for at least two weeks.

According to the World Health Organization (WHO), 350 million people worldwide suffer from depression. Another stated that suicidal attempts are most prevalent among youths of the age group 15 to 29 years old.

The risk of becoming depressed is increased by poverty, unemployment, life events such as the death of a loved one or a relationship break-up, physical illness and problems caused by alcohol and drug use.

When you or your loved ones display any of the symptoms listed below, it is advisable to visit your health care provider;

  • Lasting sad, anxious, or “empty” mood.
  • Feelings of hopelessness or pessimism.
  • Feelings of guilt, worthlessness, or helplessness.
  • Feelings of irritability or restlessness.
  • Loss of interest in hobbies and activities.
  • Loss of energy.
  • Problems concentrating, recalling details, and making decisions.
  • Difficulty falling asleep or sleeping too much.
  • Overeating or loss of appetite.
  • Thoughts of suicide or suicide attempts.
  • Aches or pains that do not get better with treatment.

 

Managing depression requires a multidisciplinary process. Depression is treatable and most people get better with treatment. If you think you may be depressed, the first step to seeking treatment is to talk to your health care provider.

 

Psychotherapy can help you:

  • Adjust to a crisis or other current difficulty.
  • Identify negative beliefs and behaviors and replace them with healthy, positive ones.
  • Explore relationships and experiences, and develop positive interactions with others.
  • Find better ways to cope and solve problems.
  • Identify issues that contribute to your depression and change behaviors that make it worse.
  • Regain a sense of satisfaction and control in your life and help ease depression symptoms, such as hopelessness and anger.
  • Learn to set realistic goals for your life.
  • Develop the ability to tolerate and accept distress using healthier behaviors.

Ways depression can be managed;

  • Take your medications properly and timely.
  • Learning about depression/education about depression.
  • Pay attention to warning signs.
  • Avoid alcohol and recreational drugs.
  • Stick to treatment plan.
  • Take care of yourself.