Major depressive disorder can have a devastating impact on a person’s health and wellbeing. During a major depressive episode, a person may be incapable of tending to his or her educational, occupational, and social responsibilities. Neglect of health, hygiene, and nutritional needs during a major depressive episode can also expose a person to both immediate and long-term physical and emotional damage. The despair of major depression can leave a person with an overwhelming sense of hopelessness and helplessness, which can make the individual feel as though he or she is trapped in an inescapable state, and that he or she is neither worthy nor capable of getting help.
At Southcoast Behavioral Health, we understand the degree to which a person’s life can be disrupted by major depression, and we have developed specialized programming that is specifically designed to help ease the symptoms of depression while empowering patients with the tools that they need to achieve and maintain a healthier mindset and a and more satisfying life.
Helping a Loved One or Family Member Get Treatment
Watching someone who you care about struggle with major depression can be painful, frustrating, and confusing. What it should not be, though, is a hopeless experience. You do not need to be a mental health expert to make a life-changing difference for your loved one. Please consider the following:
- First, if you fear that your loved one is in immediate danger of harming himself or herself, contact your local emergency number.
- It is important to understand the challenge that your loved one is facing. Educate yourself about major depressive disorder so that you will be able to provide effective support.
- Learn about the types of treatment that have helped others overcome major depressive disorder.
- Identify specific programs that are prepared to provide the type and level of care that your loved one needs.
- Have an open and honest discussion with your loved one. Express your concerns, demonstrate your compassion, and share the information that you have acquired. Most importantly, listen to what he or she has to say.
- If possible and appropriate, share your concerns with other friends or family members. Getting help is not a sign of weakness. It is the best thing you can do for your loved one, and for yourself.
- When your loved one enters a treatment program, inquire about family therapy, support sessions, or other ways that you may be able to participate.
Finally, remember that treatment is just one part of overcoming a complex challenge. Prepare to be an active and positive presence in your loved one’s life through it all, and make sure that he or she has no reason to doubt your love and commitment.
Why Consider Treatment at Southcoast Behavioral Health
Dealing with untreated major depressive disorder can expose a person to increased risk for several short- and long-term consequences. Major depressive disorder can impact a person’s physical, emotional, cognitive, and social wellbeing. Diminished energy, confidence, and motivation can undermine a person’s efforts to perform well in school or at work, which can result in academic failure, job loss, and unemployment. These setbacks can exacerbate the symptoms of the depressive disorder, which in turn can increase the likelihood of continued negative outcomes, such as family discord, strained or ruined interpersonal relationships, and social withdrawal. In the absence of effective professional intervention, many people turn to substance abuse in a misguided attempt to self-medicate or numb themselves to the psychological turmoil of major depression. This unfortunate decision can further erode the afflicted individual’s physical and mental health, as well as increase his or her risk of legal problems, incarceration, and possibly even homelessness.