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HOLIDAY BLUES | Print |

Below is information that has been re-printed from WebMD (www.webmd.com) on coping with the holiday blues.   If you are concerned that you, or someone that you know, may be experiencing sadness or depression during this holiday season, please call the Fulton County Department of Behavioral Health & Developmental Disabilities at (404) 613-3675.   Our Behavioral Health Access & Information Line is available Monday thru Friday from 8:30 AM to 5:00 PM.   If you need assistance after those hours, please call the Georgia Crisis & Access Line at 1-800-715-4225.

According to WebMD, this may be the season to be jolly; however, not everyone is experiencing comfort and joy.   For many people the holiday season, which kicks off with Thanksgiving and spans through New Year's, is anything but blissful.   In fact, this time of year may trigger about of blues or perhaps ignite a depression that has been smoldering under the surface for months.  

While people with clinical depression should seek professional help, those with a touch of the holiday blues can try these strategies recommended by experts to assure a jolly Christmas and a happy new year:

PREPARING FOR THE HOLIDAYS

Know your spending limit.   Lack of money is one of the biggest causes of stress during the holiday season.   This year, set a budget, and don't spend more than you've planned.   It's okay to tell your child that a certain toy costs too much.   Don't buy gifts that you'll spend the rest of the year trying to pay off.    

Give something personal.   You can show love and caring with any gift that is meaningful and personal.   It doesn't have to cost a lot.   Or use words instead of an expensive gift to let people know how important they are to you.   Make a phone call or write a note and share your feelings.

Get organized.   Make lists or use an appointment book to keep track of tasks to do and events to attend.

Share the tasks.   You don't have to do everything yourself.   Share your "to do" list with others.   Spend time with friends and family while you share tasks like decorating, wrapping gifts, and preparing the holiday meal.

Learn to say no.   It's okay to say "no" to events that aren't important to you.   This will give you more time to say "yes" to events that you do want to attend.  

Be realistic.   Try not to put pressure on yourself to create the perfect holiday for your family.   Focus instead on the traditions that make holidays special for you.   And remember that just because it's a holiday, family problems do not go away.   If you have a hard time being around your relatives, it's okay to set limits on your time at events and visits.

DURING THE HOLIDAYS

According to WebMD, you may not be able to avoid stressful situations during the holidays; however, you can plan to respond to them in a healthy way.  

Take breaks from group activities.   Pay attention to your own needs and feelings.   Spend a little time by yourself if you can.   Meditate, or do some relaxation breathing.   Go for a short walk.

Keep a regular sleep, meal, and exercise schedule.   Limit your alcohol.   Taking care of yourself will help you deal with stressful situations during the holidays.

Get support if you need it.   Holidays can sometimes trigger depression.   They can be especially hard if you are already dealing with the death of a loved one or the breakup of a relationship.   You may feel embarrassed   to ask for help, or you may think that you'll get over "the blues" on your own.   But most people need treatment to get better.   Talk with your doctor about counseling and medicine for depression.   You also can contact the Fulton County Department of Behavioral Health & Developmental Disabilities at (404) 613-3675 on Monday thru Friday from 8:30 AM to 5:00 PM.   If you need assistance after those hours, please call the Georgia Crisis & Access Line at 1-800-715-4225.

 
 

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