Depression is a serious mental illness that can negatively affect how a person thinks, feels, and acts. If you suspect that someone in your life is struggling with depression, it’s important to offer your support.
It might be difficult to help someone who is depressed. You may feel powerless if someone in your life has depression, and you may be unsure what to do. The most important thing you can do is be there for the person and offer your support. Kiwiwell brought you 10 ways to help someone or a family member with depression
1. Study and understand depression and other mood disorders.
By educating yourself about depression, you’ll be able to better understand what the person is going through. This can also help you communicate effectively with the person and offer support.
2. Encourage the person to get professional help.
If you suspect that someone in your life is depressed, encourage them to seek professional help. A doctor or mental health professional can diagnose depression and create a treatment plan.
3. Be there for the person.
Make yourself available to the person who is depressed. Let them know that you’re there for them and willing to lend a listening ear or a shoulder to cry on, whenever they need it.
4. Avoid giving advice.
When someone is depressed, they may not want your advice. Instead, focus on listening to the person and being supportive.
5. Help the person find hope.
Depression can make it difficult to see the positive aspects of life. Help the person find hope by reminding them of their strengths and good qualities.
6. Encourage healthy coping mechanisms.
Encourage the person to find healthy ways to cope with their depression. This might include exercise, journaling, or talking to a therapist. Avoid unhealthy coping mechanisms, such as drinking alcohol or using drugs.
7. Help the person stick to their treatment plan.
If the person is receiving professional help for their depression, offer to help them stick to their treatment plan. This might include going to therapy appointments with them or helping them take their medication.
8. Avoid being judgmental.
When talking to a person with depression, avoid being judgmental. This includes making statements such as “You just need to snap out of it” or “It’s all in your head.”
9. Be patient.
Depression can be a long-term illness. Be patient with the person and understand that it might take time for them to recover.
10. Take care of yourself, too.
Helping someone with depression can be emotionally draining. Make sure to take care of yourself, too. This might include talking to a therapist, getting exercise, or taking breaks when needed.
If you suspect that someone in your life is depressed, don’t hesitate to offer your support. By being there for the person and offering your help, you can make a difference in their life.