GREENVILLE, N.C. (WNCT) – It’s estimated that 14.8 million adults in the country suffer from major depressive disorder. While the holidays are supposed to be a happy time for people, they can cause depression in others.
Glenn Simpson with Vidant’s Behavioral Health unit said there are ways you can beat depression around the holiday. He suggested you seek medical attention, however, if you’ve been suffering from depression for more than two weeks.
“Getting treatment and reaching out is really the key to getting the help you need,” Simpson said.
However, people can also help alleviate depression by taking some simple steps. Simpson suggested doing things like keeping expectations in check, experiencing something new, or seeking free ways to enjoy yourself, like looking at lights, taking walks or listening to music.
He also suggests getting involved.
“Do something for someone else,” he said. “Really reaching out and paying it forward, that you sometimes read in the paper about. Volunteering somewhere.”
Simpson also warned people about consuming a lot of alcohol at holiday parties, which can make depression worse. He said lack of daylight this time of year can also enhance a person’s depression.
Many people will be out seeking last minute gifts, which can add financial stress, and impact depression at the same time.
With so many different factors during the holidays that can lead to depression, Simpson said there are a lot of resources available to people. He suggested reaching out to your doctor, or simply dialing 211 to find help.
“There is help for depression,” he said. “They just need to reach out.”
Simpson also said if you notice someone who looks depressed, just being there and supporting them can go a long way.