Depression affects everyone differently. For some people, it comes and goes. For others, it can feel almost constant. You might experience one episode of depression, or it might be a lifelong struggle.
It’s hard to predict what your experience with depression will be. But the more severely depressed you are, the less likely it will go away on its own—and the more likely it will come back.
What should I do if my depression comes back?
Fortunately, there’s no need to sit around and wait for depression to go away on its own. Like other mental illnesses, depression is treatable. You can seek professional help from a doctor or therapist, or you can work on your mental health on your own.
Start by learning more about depression and how it’s treated. Then, pick a treatment you feel comfortable with—it can be something simple, like writing in a journal. Stick with it for a few weeks and see if you feel better. If not, try something else. Here are some tips you may want to try:
- Create a coping skills toolbox. These are coping tools that you can use to manage your depression. It can be journaling, physical activity, yoga, meditation, drawing, creating art, etc.—whatever works best for you.
- Talk to someone. Sometimes, when we are experiencing depression, reaching out for support can help us feel better. You can talk to friend or loved one you trust. Or you can talk with people in a support group or online forums, or a call into a warmline.
- Talk to a mental health professional. If you’re looking for a specific treatment plan for your depression, it may help to see a therapist, psychiatrist, or doctor. They can help you create a plan for managing your depression and help you decide if medication is right for you.
Working actively to improve your mental health feels better than waiting around for things to change on their own. And many of the treatments for depression are just good, healthy habits to have anyway. It may take you a while to find a combination of treatments that works best for you, and that’s okay. Finding ways to improve your mental health is a rewarding experience, with benefits that go far beyond just keeping your depression under control.