What to Know About Depression in Women and How to Get Help
May is Mental Health Awareness Month, but that’s not all, it’s also the month that we celebrate Mother’s Day. Women of the world that care for children get one day to celebrate their efforts in raising the next generation but in all honesty, women deserve so much more. To care for others, you must care for yourself. The National Institute of Mental Health (NIMH) notes that depression is more common among women than men. This may be due to biological and hormonal factors that are different in women.
Sadness is a normal reaction when life gets tough. Usually, these feelings go away. Depression, however, is real and considered a medical condition. So, what are the symptoms?
What to look for?
- Persistent sadness.
- Anxiety that won’t go away.
- Feelings of worthlessness, helplessness, and hopelessness.
- Appetite changes such as weight loss/weight gain.
- Thoughts of suicide or suicide attempts.
- Difficulty concentrating, remembering, or making sound decisions.
- Physical symptoms such as headaches, chronic aches/pain, or digestive issues.
This Mother’s Day is a perfect time to highlight the importance of proper mental health in women. Let’s start by getting help. There are a few ways to ease the symptoms of depression on your own. Changing your lifestyle can have a positive impact on your mood. This isn’t easy and quite frankly, it’s not something that can be done for two or three weeks until you feel better and then go back to old habits. So how can you change your lifestyle for good?
Tips to Aid in Depression Treatment at Home
- Exercise – this may improve your mood and reduce aches/pain.
- Sleep – go to bed and get up at the same time each day.
- Diet – cut out junk like sugar, fat, and processed foods and focus on the basics like whole grains, lean meats/fish, and fruits and vegetables.
- Sunlight – spend some time outdoors.
- Time Out – yes that’s right! This is not just for kiddos; adults need time away from everything too. Even as little as 15 minutes per day can be helpful. Use this time to mindfully breathe, meditate, or stretch.
How to Get Help
These are just a few tips to help combat depression in women. If you or someone you know needs immediate help, call/text the National Suicide & Crisis hotline at 988. Treatment for mental illness starts with your primary care provider. Our Behavioral Health Counselors are available to talk in-person or via video call. The first step is to schedule an appointment to discuss your concerns and ask for help. Let’s celebrate Mother’s Day all year long by creating a healthy lifestyle and sticking to it each day. Don’t let depression get you down, ask for help!