Depression First Aid

In the last blog post, I covered symptoms of depression according to DSM V. I also included Beck’s Depression Inventory (check A little bit about Depression).

So assuming that after reading the previous post, you realised that you may be suffering from depression or someone dear is. What can you do before seeking professional help? The following video is a brief overview of things that can be done:

Living with black dog

Before studying psychology, I was so eager to tell people who are depressed to just be happy and move on. I soon came to realise that it is never that easy. In fact, saying that does not make them feel better and may worsen their symptoms. So, the first tip is DO NOT try to talk them into feeling better.

The second advice is DO NOT JUDGE. Feeling depressed may come with all kinds of irrational thoughts about other people and oneself. Thirdly, in good days, DO NOT BELITTLE their feelings and what they are going through. Suffering from depression does not mean that one is locked up in their room and crying 24/7. Similarly, DO NOT BE OVERLY COMPASSIONATE. Your near one may be suffering from depression, but may not know about it. Even if they do feel that they have lost themselves, they may not want to admit. Being overly compassionate may make matters worse.

Finally, ENCOURAGE them to seek professional help. However, DO NOT NAG or over-involve yourself.


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