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Depression - How to prevent?

How you can help yourself

How to prevent depressionExpress your Feelings

Keeping a tight lid on one’s feelings will, in the long run, intensify the feelings and drive one to deeper levels of depression. If you have a friend or a confidant, speak to him candidly about how you feel.

Time Management

Think about activities that brought pleasure and which are no longer done after depression set in. starting with small steps, begin to get back into doing them. Set realistic goals. In light of your depression, you may not be able to achieve what you were previously capable of, but doing something simple is better than not attempting at all.

Social Interaction

If you have withdrawn from your friends, make some effort to meet up again. Even thought the natural inclination is to keep to oneself, it is advisable to be in regular contact with friends or family. There is no need to talk about one’s problems; just being around with people helps rid one of feelings of isolation and loneliness.

Keep a Diary/Write Letters

This is a way of expressing your feelings. You may not always have friends or family with you, and keeping a diary or writing to yourself can take their place for the time being. You can even write notes to yourself, encouraging yourself as if you were talking to a beloved friend.

Guard your Self-talk

Refrain from confessing negative words like ‘I am useless’ or ‘it can never change’. Let your self-talk be positive, optimistic and hopeful. It may take effort to keep your language upbeat when you feel down, but making an effort to do so will help change your thinking pattern.

Depression ExercisePhysical Exercise

When depression is moderate to severe, the sufferer has neither energy nor drive to get up and exercise. With the lifting of depressed mood, the patient can be encouraged to do some regular exercise. Exercise releases endorphins, which are in themselves capable of elevating mood.

Support Groups for Patients

A support group can be invaluable in supporting persons recovering from depression. Groups comprising persons suffering from depression can provide support and encouragement.

Actions to avoid


Depression sometimes drives people to drink and sometimes alcohol abuse leads to depression. Drowning your sorrows will not help you overcome depression in the long run.

Making Major Decisions

There are many decisions a depressed person may need to make. Some are major decisions which require the person to be rational, calm and objective. Hence, it is always wise to postpone making these decisions until the depression has lifted.

Suicidal Actions

Depressive disorders make one feel exhausted, worthless, helpless and hopeless and may make some people feel like giving up. These negative views are part of the depression and typically do not accurately reflect the actual circumstances. Therefore do not give in to the urge to end your life.

When To Seek Help

You should seek help for depression when it negatively affects one or more aspects of your life, such as your friendships, family, job or general outlook on life. If you are unsure, there is no harm in getting an assessment just to reassure yourself. Many persons may be reluctant to seek treatment for various reasons, whether they are afraid of being given a psychiatric diagnosis, and of the stigma attached to a mental illness. Some people have the notion that they will be sent to the psychiatric hospital and confined there.

Most depressed people do not require hospitalization and only need outpatient treatment. If left untreated, depressive symptoms may last for months to years and is more difficult to treat if it is more and more severe.

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The information provided is not intended as medical advice. Terms of use. Information provided by SingHealth