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When Should I Seek Help

We may not realise how depressed we are because it comes on so gradually. We may be determined to struggle on and blame ourselves for being lazy or feeble. We may try to cope with our feelings of Depression by being very busy. This can make us even more stressed and exhausted. Often we notice physical pains, constant headaches, sleeplessness or palpitations. Sometimes physical symptoms can be the first sign of Depression.

  • When your feelings of depression are worse than usual and don’t seem to get any better.
  • When your feelings of depression affect your work, interests and feelings towards your family and friends.
  • If you find yourself feeling that life is not worth living, or that other people would be better off without you.

It is time to get help.

I don’t want to bother the doctor - depression isn’t a real illness.
Most of us think more about physical symptoms than about feeling depressed. The reason for this may be that many older people were brought up not to bother the doctor unless they had a physical complaint. If they cannot see that something is wrong, people find it hard to believe or understand or accept that something is wrong.  Sometimes the first sign of depression can be a constant worry about having a physical illness, even when your doctor can’t find anything wrong with you. If he or she tells you that you are actually depressed, it may feel as though you are being fobbed off. This isn’t the case. Depression is as deserving of help as any other physical illness. You may feel tempted to insist on more tests than the doctor thinks you need, but this may just delay starting the treatment that will really help you. 

Have you got somone to talk to?
It may be enough to talk things over with a relative or friend. If this doesn’t help, you probably need to talk it over with your family doctor. You may find that your friends and family have noticed a difference in you and have been worried about you.

Go to see your GP
If in doubt or you are not sure if you are suffering from Depression, speak to your GP or family doctor. GPs are quite used to helping people with depression and almost all of them have had training in how to deal with it. You are certainly not wasting your doctor’s time by asking for help with depression. If you can’t get out, ask your doctor to see you at home. It may help to have a friend or relative with you when you see your doctor.


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