World Mental Health Day is recognised on the 10th October by The World Health Organisation. Each year has its own theme. This year it’s psychological first aid and the support people can provide to those in distress. Whether you personally suffer from depression or know someone who does, it is important to educate yourself & also be able to help those around you.
Many people working in the city suffer from ‘high-functioning depression.’ They lead their lives as normal; smiling, laughing, performing well at work and socialising at night. Make-up, clothes and a smile are easy ways to mask depression and hide it from everyone around you. However, you are anything but alright inside. Depression is more often that not coupled with anxiety.
“I do suffer from depression, I suppose. Which isn’t that unusual. You know, a lot of people do” – AMY
- Mixed anxiety and depression are the most common mental disorder in Britain.
- As many as 10% of people in England will experience depression in their lifetime.
- The poorer and more disadvantaged are disproportionately affected by common mental health problems and their adverse consequences.
- Ten per cent of mothers and six per cent of fathers in the UK have mental health problems at any given time.
- One in five teens experiences a mental health problem in any given year.
Statistics provided by the Mental World Organisation
We look at ways to help beat depression…
Friends are key
It can be stressful and sometimes very lonely working and living in the city. Figure out your support network. Friends are so important. It’s easy to distance yourself during times of depression, but nothing beats being with friends. If they love you, they will support you through tough times.
Not eating or eating too much are also recognisable symptoms. Coffees and red-bulls often replace a healthy diet to counteract insomnia and an overwhelming sense of fatigue. It is really important to eat well and drink water throughout the day, especially if you drink wine in the evenings to self-medicate and cope with depression. Starving your body of nutrients won’t help your battle with depression.
Not being able to sleep or sleeping too much are also tell-tale signs. You can’t get out of bed in the morning, as you have been awake all night, well that is until an hour before your alarm goes off. Your bedroom is all-important. So, invest in a nice duvet set. Keep your bedroom clean. Don’t watch TV or work until late in your bedroom. Have sex! It will help you sleep & boost your mood.
Work out ways to alleviate stress
Stress is a massive trigger. It is important to not let stress build up, otherwise, depression can sink in over time.
Drinking and other recreational bad habits may be ways to self-medicate, but it won’t take away your depression. If anything, it will make it ten times worse.
Talk to your line manager or HR if work stress is building up. Discuss problems with loved ones. Most importantly, be kind to yourself.
Ask for help…
It takes courage to tell people around you about your depression. You never know how they will react. However, most will be supportive of you. They may be upset about those times you haven’t called or sent texts, yet seem to be posting party pictures on social media with relative ease. Give people a chance to help you and you might be pleasantly surprised.
If you are depressed then talk to your GP. Find a therapist. It’s great having friends, but for more deep-rooted problems and mental health issues, find a professional you can talk things over with. If you are prescribed medication then don’t worry. You would take it for other medical problems such as asthma and diabetes, so mental health is no different.
“Depression isn’t about, ‘Woe is me, my life is this, that and the other’, it’s like having the worst flu all day that you just can’t kick” Robbie Williams
Author: Marie Ellis
People say write about what you know. So I did. I founded Broke Girl in the City – a smart girl’s guide to leading a fabulous lifestyle on a budget! A career spanning entertainment, bars & nightclubs (and frequenting them), film, music and TV, there isn’t much I don’t know about how to have fun in the city when completely broke.