How to Live With a Depressed Person in Your Life

Depression can be an incredibly difficult burden to deal with. Even the simplest things in life can seem almost impossible when you feel like your life is falling apart. Even just getting through a simple workday can feel like the equivalent of having to walk through water.

Through no fault of their own, people dealing with depression can cause difficulty for those living with the person affected. People grappling with mental health problems can seem needy or demanding, and that can strain the patience of others to the point where it might even damage their relationship.

Here are some tips on how to live with a depressed person in your life:

Learn More About the Person’s Struggles

Understanding more about that mental health condition will put you in a better position to provide a helping hand, as well as understanding why they might be acting in a particular way.

Provide Support

Try and encourage your loved one to do things that will help with their situation, such as seeing a therapist, getting proper exercise, eating right, keeping a journal, etc.

Listen to Their Concerns

Some people with depression find it tough to speak with therapists, but can unburden themselves much more readily with loved ones. This should not be considered a replacement for a therapy session with a properly trained professional, but it can still be very cathartic. Also, the more you know about what they are going through, the better you can be at supporting them.

Remember to Take of Yourself

If you fail to keep up with your own needs, it will be nearly impossible for you to provide support. Worse still, you can develop your own mental health challenges as a result. Don’t forget to include some me time in your schedule and make the most of it.

Depression in Senior Citizens

Depression can strike anyone of any age, but senior citizens seem to be especially vulnerable when it comes to this form of mental illness. People in their golden years often struggle with daunting physical and cognitive issues that can reduce their ability to lead fully functional and productive lives, resulting in depression. It can also sometimes be difficult to then detect the depression because symptoms they display are sometimes misdiagnosed as being side effects from medication.

Here are some factors that can lead to depression in senior citizens:

Isolation

Many seniors reach a point in their lives where travel becomes more difficult. As a result, they may lose touch with friends and loved ones, and begin to feel quite isolated. Those living in managed care might even see them less due to geographic distance.

Physical Ailments

When we feel poorly, it almost always has a negative affect on our mood. In addition to common ailments like cold and flu, seniors’ moods can be impacted by more serious problems common to this stage in life, such as heart disease, cancer, multiple sclerosis, stroke, and dementia.

Medication

We mentioned above that depression can sometimes go untreated in seniors because it can be mistaken as side effects from medication. However, there are certain meds that can actually induce or worsen depression. These include blood pressure medication, painkillers, beta blockers, steroids, and drugs to treat high cholesterol.

Lack of Exercise

Whether it be physical limitations, location, or lack of motivation to get up and do something, not having regular forms of exercise in life can be a factor in developing depression.

Poor Sleeping Habits

Many older people do not sleep well due to having to use the bathroom more frequently, unruly roommates in managed care facilities, etc. Lack of proper rest can lead to lessened enjoyment of life and depression.