7 ways to help a family member undergoing a depression

>> Feb 18, 2019


Depression is a serious mental health concern, especially among young and middle-aged Australians. Statistics show that 1 in every 7 young Australians of the age between 4 and 17 years experiences depressive disorders. This often leads to dire depressive consequences, most common of which include committing of suicide. Persons experiencing depression also experience dissociation when doing common activities such as driving. This consequently leads to adverse effects including causing of accidents while driving.
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Australia is, however, readily equipped with sufficient depression health facilities and resources to ensure person suffering from depression can receive sufficient medical attention where necessary. In most cases, such individuals, even after receiving psychological care, need to be supported at a personal and family level. Here are 7 ways on how to help a family member undergoing depression.

Understand the person and accommodate him

The first important measure you should take towards helping such a person is to understand that he or she is undergoing depression and therefore accommodate his change of behavior and attitude. Appreciating the shortcomings that such a person suffering from depression may express helps you not to adversely react to him or her. Such a move generally makes the patient to feel welcome, appreciated, and recognized. This is normally the first step towards effectively remediating the side effects of depression while helping expedite the healing process.

Accommodating the person's weaknesses also helps you to put up with various adverse depression effects such as the inability of the individual to perform simple tasks for him or herself. Understanding the individual from such a perspective and accommodating his or her weaknesses gives him the necessary level of social comfort.

Provide room for medical attention

Medical attention is highly necessary for the process of supporting persons suffering from depression. After accommodating the person's weakness, it is important to provide a platform for him or her to seek the necessary psychological attention. As the only sober person that the depressive person depends upon, you should take it upon yourself to seek the help of Psychologists Wellbeing Brisbane from where the patient will be able to receive the necessary mental health care. Such a step helps expedite further the healing process.

Provide social comfort and support

Social comfort and social support are highly necessary, especially in the environment around which the depressive person spends most of his time in. The depression patient should, therefore, be encouraged to maintain a healthy behavioral lifestyle with laughter and humor that generally keeps such a person in a good mood. This helps ensure that the person does not spend much of his or her time alone in an environment that otherwise confines him or herself to further depressive episodes.

Such social comfort can also be maintained and repaired by providing the individual with the necessary material such as watching comic films, something that generally helps improve on the individual’s mood progressively. You should also endeavor to spend more time with the person as a way of providing social comfort and support that is highly essential when helping the individuals to open up him or herself and get free of depression.

Provide the right atmosphere for recovery

For individual recovering from depression after seeking psychological care, it is important to provide the right atmosphere and environment that can ensure that such depressive episodes do not relapse. In most cases, such a good atmosphere can be maintained by ensuring that the individual is talked to politely and never reminded of any aspect of his or her life that can aggravate the moods. The right atmosphere for recovery and prevention of relapses can also be enhanced by being a good listener to the patient.

Do not judge, compare, or criticize

When providing support to an individual recovering from depression, it is also highly necessary to ensure that such a person is never judged for any action or word that he or she says. Pronouncing any form of judgment upon his or her ideas can easily lead to aggravation which is detrimental to the individual's recovery. You may also want to avoid any form of comparison of the individual with anyone else on any matter.

Comparisons generally make the individuals feel unappreciated and unfairly treated especially since the depressive person is normally relatively weak and incapable in many aspects. Criticism is the worst form of exposure that a depressive person can get. It is highly essential to minimize, as much as possible, any form of negative comments on the individual's life on any action.

Express patience

Patience is a highly needed virtue whenever supporting a patient suffering from depression. The first level of patience that should be exercised is in regard to whenever seeking to see the patient's progress. The recovery process may be relatively long, depending on various factors including the extent of depression that the patient was exposed to. Being patient to the patient demands that you continually provide the necessary support without demanding to see progress in the short term. Patience also gives you the morale to put up with the patient's shortcomings where necessary without scolding or being too assertive to the patient.

Learn as much as possible about depression

When providing care and support to a patient suffering from depression, it is highly essential to ensure you learn as much as possible on the larger topic of depression and acquaint yourself with the necessary information. Sometimes, the process of providing care to depressive patients requires that you identify the symptoms that you need to be on the lookout for. Educating yourself on other issues such as how to encourage the patient and the kind of approach to use whenever the patient expresses certain symptoms is highly essential to ensure you remain relevant to the patient's recovery.

Depression, in conclusion, is a common occurrence in the modern day society that affects individuals from the age of 4 to the age of 80s. Whereas such patients can receive psychological care from the existing medical clinics, the bulk of the support is left to persons who provide social home-based care to the depressive patient. Understanding the steps to take when supporting such a patient determines the patient's ability to recover quickly.

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