Simple ways to prevent and manage depression during college
Depression is a serious mental disorder characterized by overwhelming feelings of sadness, loneliness, and anxiousness that affects an individual’s moods, thoughts, and behaviors. When a person experiences depressive symptoms over a long time, it leads to debilitating consequences in his or her life.
Being all-pervasive, depression is sweeping across college campuses in the United States. Although a highly common and treatable condition, its symptoms worsen when left untreated or treatment is relegated to a later date. Many people, particularly adolescents and young adults, have their first brush with depressive symptoms during college years. Experts believe that college students are susceptible to the condition due to various factors, including stress from academic challenges, finances, or difficulty in adjusting after moving away from friends and families.
As per a government estimate, in 2016, 3.1 million youths aged 12 to 17 had a major depressive episode in the previous year. However, the real figures could be much higher than this.
Some self-help tips before stepping into college
Suffering from depression during college could be overwhelming for youngsters. Moreover, because most college students do not receive adequate help, they are not equipped to identify depressive symptoms or seek help in the first place. While some may believe that talking about their struggle might invite unwanted attention and judgment, others may simply believe that seeking mental health care is a sign of weakness. As those conjectures are unfounded, knowing the nitty-gritty of depression before stepping into college could make a huge difference.
Listed below are a few tips youngsters can follow to keep depressive symptoms at bay:
- Social media could be unnerving: For individuals at risk of depression, spending time on social media platforms could be detrimental. It will invariably expose them to a world of cheerful and lively photos, videos and posts that might prompt them to draw an analogy with others. At times, the false reality that social media projects, can mislead someone into believing that all except him/her are successful in their lives, spurring a sense of inadequacy and disillusionment.
- Alcohol doesn’t help either: College students often uphold alcohol as an elixir or a potion that makes everything hunky-dory. The sedative effects of alcohol may temporarily quell feelings that accompany depression. However, alcohol – a nervous system depressant – spells doom when it coincides with depression, as a terrible hangover and the depressive symptoms await them the morning after.
- Seeking mental health care doesn’t make a person seem weaker: Many colleges offer on-campus counseling centers for helping students who experience mental health symptoms at little or no cost. However, in an effort to camouflage their depression, many students keep mum about their struggle with the condition. Whether it is their pride or fear of being ostracized as a sickly person, dealing with depression is an uphill struggle when fought alone. Seeking help for depression does not make a person appear Rather, it displays courage and a will to recover.
- Medications for depression take time for desired effects: Contrary to popular belief, taking medications to manage and alleviate one’s depression does not make the person feeble. Medications such as antidepressants take a couple of weeks to kick in and significantly help to stabilize the brain to a functional state. In fact, most evidence-based treatment for depression entails a combination of talk therapies and medications in delivering favorable outcomes.
Depression is an illness, not a character flaw
Depression does not improve with a single visit to a health care provider. Unlike most physical conditions, the depression rehabilitation process takes time and effort. Depressed individuals are more likely to view most setbacks as failures. However, with some patience and medical intervention it is only a matter of time before he or she gets better.
If you or a loved one is struggling with depressive symptoms, it is important to seek immediate help. The Texas Depression Treatment Help assists in accessing the best treatment centers for depression in Texas that specialize in delivering evidence-based intervention plans. Call our 24/7 helpline number (866) 827-0282 to know more about depression disorders centers in Texas.