Depression and the Holidays

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Depression and the Holidays

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When you're depressed, holidays can be hard. They may bring up bad memories, or you may feel as if you're outside looking in at people who are having a good time. But try to take part in some holiday events. It may make you feel better.

Here are some tips for dealing with the holidays.

Try to:

  • Spend time with friends, and do things you enjoy, not only things you feel you have to do.
  • Get plenty of rest. The better you feel, the better a holiday can be.
  • Think about others. Helping those less fortunate than you can make you feel better.
  • Look to the future. Think about what’s possible in the year to come instead of what has happened in the past.
  • Get money off your mind. Money problems are a leading cause of holiday depression. Focus on the spirit of the season.
  • Watch what you eat and drink. Eat healthy foods, watch your portion sizes, and avoid alcohol.

Remember:

  • Be realistic. Try not to build up the holiday too much in your mind.
  • Say no sometimes. People will understand if you don't do things. Wearing yourself out will make you feel worse.
  • It’s okay to be sad or lonely. You don't have to be happy just because it’s the holidays.
  • Get help if you need it. Seek out family or friends for support. Community or church groups can help too. If things get bad, talk to your doctor or counsellor.

Related Information

Credits

By Healthwise Staff
Primary Medical Reviewer Kathleen Romito, MD - Family Medicine
Primary Medical Reviewer Brian D. O'Brien, MD - Internal Medicine
Specialist Medical Reviewer Lisa S. Weinstock, MD - Psychiatry
Last Revised March 15, 2011

This information does not replace the advice of a doctor. Healthwise, Incorporated disclaims any warranty or liability for your use of this information.