What Is Depression And How To Get Help
MTV got in touch with YoungMinds to find out more about depression, and how to get help.
A lot of the time, it can be difficult to speak openly and honestly about very personal matters. But if you’re feeling depressed, the most important thing you can do is discuss what you’re going through with someone who cares about you.
This is why we salute high-profile figures for taking the difficult step to talk publicly about their struggles with depression. Speaking openly helps to de-stigmatise mental health issues, and individuals with a platform can help with this. J.K. Rowling said she was happy to discuss her battle with depression if it meant challenging the stigma that surrounds the condition.
Rowling spoke about how she contemplated suicide when she was suffering from depression as a single mother. She said that when her regular doctor looked back over her medical notes, they called her in and gave her counselling.
“She absolutely saved me because I don't think I would have had the guts to go and do it twice,” the author said. "I have never been remotely ashamed of having been depressed. Never.”
Cara Delevingne revealed that she didn’t quit modelling because of issues with the fashion industry – it was because she needed a break, and her struggles with depression weren’t helping.
Speaking to eonline, Delevingne said: "A lot of people I've loved in my life suffer from [depression], including myself...One of the main things is talking about it, using your voice.
"Mental illness goes unseen, but I don't want it to be unheard. I want to speak up for it."
So what is depression – and how can you get help? MTV got in contact with YoungMinds, the UK’s leading mental health charity for young people, to find out.
What is depression?
Most young people experience ups and down during their teenage years and occasionally will feel down or upset by certain things going on in their lives. But some young people feel sad, lonely, down, anxious or stressed for longer periods of time to the extent that it can affect their everyday lives and can prevent that young person from doing things they would normally do. This is known as depression.
Depression can be caused by a reaction to something in your life such as abuse, family breakdown or bullying. Depression may run in your family and be caused by genetic factors or it may be that you are under a lot of stress and feel you have a lack of support.
How you can get help
1) Talk to Someone
The most important thing you can do if you think you are feeling depressed is talk to someone. This could be your parents, a sibling, friend, teacher or a GP. Talking about how you are feeling can really help you to feel better. People who care about you will want to help you to feel better, so don’t feel worried about talking to them.
2) Visit your GP
If you don’t feel comfortable talking to a friend, teacher or your parents, go and see your GP –whether it’s a physical health problem or a mental health problem, they are there to help you to feel better and there are a number of things that they may suggest for you.
Don’t suffer in silence. Keeping it all to yourself will only worsen your feelings of anxiety or depression. Remember, you’re not the only one to feel like this.
There are things you can do to make things a bit easier for yourself if you are experiencing depression or depressive symptoms, such as:
- Talk to someone.
- Get some fresh air
- Get regular exercise – there is a proven link between exercise and better mental health.
- Do things you enjoy whether it is skateboarding, hanging out with friends or reading.
- Try to eat regularly even if it is small meals.
- Write a diary about how you are feeling.
- Remember – you are not the only one to experience depression and you haven’t done anything wrong. People can help so don’t suffer on your own, choose someone you like and trust to talk to.
For more advice on how to get help, please visit the YoungMinds website here.
MTV would like to thank YoungMinds for their help and expertise. To get in contact with YoungMinds, click here.