Depression & Low Mood
What Is It?
Most people can feel low occasionally. Feeling sad is a normal reaction to experiences that are stressful or upsetting. However, when these feelings go on and on and interfere with your whole life, it can become a mental health difficulty, known as ‘depression’. Sometimes depression occurs following a particular event (such as someone close to you passing away) and sometimes it can just develop. The symptoms of depression can include:
- Being moody and irritable
- Becoming withdrawn – avoiding friends, family and regular activities
- Feeling guilty or bad, being self-critical – hating yourself
- Feeling unhappy, miserable and lonely a lot of the time
- Feeling hopeless and wanting to die
- Finding it difficult to concentrate
- Not looking after your personal appearance
- Changes to eating and sleep patterns
- Suffering aches and pains, such as headaches or stomach-aches
What Might Help?
- Talk to someone. Someone who you trust and can help (a parent, a teacher at school or friend).
- Look after yourself. Having a good sleep routine and eating regularly can help. Exercise is also great way of relieving stress and can make you feel good too.
- Doing things. Try to keep yourself occupied by doing activities, even if you feel you do not really enjoy them. Try not to stay all alone in your room, especially during the day.
- Listen to your thoughts. Being aware of unhelpful thinking patterns and finding ways to challenge these thoughts may help to improve your mood.
- Seek professional help. If symptoms continue, you may need extra help. Speak with your School Nurse or your GP about treatment options (they may refer you to CAMHS for more specialist help).
Useful Clips and Stories:
- Sarah’s Story, aged 15: The Royal College of Psychiatrists
- Changing Minds: Mental Health: What it is, what to do, where to go? This CD-ROM is designed for 13-17 years. It includes a wide range of resources and a wealth of reference for further information and help.
- Read Jasmin’s battle with depression from Young Minds
- Depression CBT self help guide (IOS and Android link)
- Mood Panda (IOS and Android link)
- Sleep Cycle (IOS and Android link)
- Help and information about depression and self-help groups.
- Epic friends -helping you to help your friends who might be finding things difficult
- YoungMinds provides information on mental health difficulties
- HeadMeds provides general information around medication