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Understanding Depression-A Way Out

Mental awareness is now a thing. With Nigerian artiste Banky. W sharing the Nigerian suicide hotlines on his social media page to Falz encouraging depression victims to speak up in his tweet, Nigerians are admitting that depression is not just a Western illness.

Understanding Depression photo credit Ebony Magazine

According to the National Institute of Mental Health, depression (major depressive disorder or clinical depression) is a common but serious mood disorder that causes severe symptoms which can affect how you feel, think, and handle daily activities, such as sleeping, eating, or working. To be diagnosed with depression, the symptoms must be present for at least two weeks.

Often described as a dark and deep pit that one could fall into at certain stages in life, victims are constantly advised to speak up to professionals or experienced people when feeling down. As suicide rates among celebrities and masses alike increase, it is clear that depression is a respecter of no age, gender, race, or status. With the personal and societal expectation to achieve certain achievements in life, an average Nigerian is prone to get depressed in certain life phases.

Beyond professional help, here are five tips that may help you or your loved ones:

  • Stay active and exercise regularly. Set realistic goals for yourself
  • Spend time with people and confide in a trusted friend or relative
  • Sign up with a depression therapy group. Although this may seem intimidating initially, its benefit cannot be overlooked as it helps to provide support and more insights into your situation. It can also propel you forward, promote your social skills, teach you about yourself and even costs less than individual counselling.

Depression group therapy photo credit koučing

  • Postpone important decisions, such as getting married or divorced, or changing jobs until you feel better.
  • Continue to educate yourself about depression.
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