(HealthDay News) -- Depression can make a person feel unusually sad, worthless, uninterested in activities that used to be fun, restless or even suicidal for several weeks or longer.
Depression is a serious illness that requires professional treatment, often with a combination of medication and psychological therapy.
The American Academy of Family Physicians offers these suggestions for dealing with depression:
- Set a realistic schedule for yourself. While you're getting better, don't expect that you can maintain a full schedule at a regular pace.
- Try not to believe the negative thoughts, like feelings of failure or blame, that depression causes -- such thoughts should ease as depression subsides.
- Participate in activities that make you feel good about yourself and that you enjoy.
- While you're depressed, try to avoid making any major life decisions. If you have to, ask a trusted friend or family member for help.
- Don't drink alcohol or take unprescribed drugs, as either can cause serious interactions with antidepressant medication, and can exacerbate depression.
- Get as much exercise as possible -- at least 30 minutes four to six times a week.