Advertisement

How can I avoid being depressed during the holidays?

The holidays, while intended to be a time of celebration, can also be a time of sadness or loneliness for some people. You may feel that the holidays don’t meet your expectations, or you may miss people who you cannot be with over the holidays. It is normal to feel down occasionally and for a short period of time. If you feel your depression is more than just a normal, short-term period of sadness, however, you should not feel embarrassed to seek medical attention. Depression is a medical condition that requires treatment. If you are having thoughts of suicide, go immediately to the emergency room.

It is important that you seek help for depression, not only for your mental health, but also for your physical health. Even for people who do not have heart disease, depression can increase the risk of a heart attack and the development of coronary artery disease. And if you are depressed, you are more likely to die from sudden heart problems. 

Psychotherapy and medication can help you mange depression. If your depression is short-term and related to the holidays, a psychotherapist or other qualified medical professional can help you identify strategies for reducing your symptoms.

Additionally, some of the following strategies may help you manage feelings of sadness over the holidays:

  • Seek social support. While you may wish to withdraw from social contact when you are experiencing holiday depression, doing so can increase your sense of isolation. You may find that time with others can improve your mood.
  • Limit alcohol. Drinking alcohol can worsen your depression, so you may want to consider avoiding or limiting how much you drink at holiday partiers until you feel better.
  • Exercise. Try to exercise for 30 minutes a day, 5 days a week. Exercise releases endorphins - “feel-good” chemicals that may help reduce depression. Skipping exercise over the holidays because you feel you are too busy may make it harder for you to manage your depression.

Continue Learning about Healthy Holidays

Take the Heartburn Out of the Holidays With These Simple Food Swaps
Take the Heartburn Out of the Holidays With These Simple Food SwapsTake the Heartburn Out of the Holidays With These Simple Food SwapsTake the Heartburn Out of the Holidays With These Simple Food SwapsTake the Heartburn Out of the Holidays With These Simple Food Swaps
Your favorite dishes may make pain and burning worse. Odds are you’re familiar with heartburn, that feeling of pain and burning in your chest you some...
Start Slideshow
5 Holiday Food Swaps
5 Holiday Food Swaps5 Holiday Food Swaps5 Holiday Food Swaps5 Holiday Food Swaps
You won’t even notice you’re eating fewer calories. Your diet doesn’t have to get in the way of your holiday cheer. Instead, pick and choose the healt...
Start Slideshow
Valentine's Day
Valentine's Day
What Are Some Healthy Food Substitutions?
What Are Some Healthy Food Substitutions?

Important: This content reflects information from various individuals and organizations and may offer alternative or opposing points of view. It should not be used for medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. As always, you should consult with your healthcare provider about your specific health needs.