When you are depressed, it is often very hard to think clearly or make any decisions. It is also hard to think of anything to do to help yourself feel better. This brochure will help you take positive action in your own behalf.
Keep in Mind
- Depression is not your fault.
- Depression is a temporary condition. You will get well. You will feel happy again.
- The best time to address depression is now, before it gets any worse.
- It’s up to you, with the help of your supporters, to take responsibility for getting better.
See Your Doctor
Depression is serious. You need to see a general physician as soon as possible—don’t wait longer than a few days. The sooner you get treatment, the sooner you will feel better. You need an appointment with your physician for a complete physical examination to see if there is a medical condition that is causing or worsening your depression, to plan your treatment and for possible referral to a specialist. If you do not have a physician, contact a mental health organization in your area for a recommendation.
If any of the following apply to you, insist on an appointment within 24 hours or ask a friend or family member to do it for you (it’s hard to do things for yourself when you are depressed).
- You feel absolutely hopeless or worthless.
- You feel like life is not worth living anymore.
- You think a lot about dying.
- You have thoughts of suicide.
- You have been making plans to end your life.
Ask a family member or friend to stay with you until it is time for your appointment. Make sure you keep the appointment.
When you see your doctor, take a complete listing of all medications and health care preparations you are using for any reason, and any unusual, uncomfortable or painful symptoms.