How to Cope with Depression Triggers
Depression triggers are a fact of life for those of us with depression. Since we can expect these depression triggers to occur, we need to have some effective coping strategies in place. What effective strategies can we use to cope with these depression triggers?
Kinds of Depression Triggers; How to Cope with Depression Triggers
One potential depression trigger is the spoken word. Sometimes people will say things that hurt us. Words can be painful, but there are ways to prevent them from sending us into a major depressive episode. First of all, have some truths and positive thoughts ready ahead of time. Write them down if that helps. Also, there may be people you need to remove from your life or at least limit the time you're around them. Spend time with people who encourage you, not people who may be one of the reasons you're potentially headed into a depressive episode.
Some Television Shows or Movies
Certain television shows or movies can also trigger a depressive episode. If possible, be aware of the content of a movie or show before you watch it. Of course, we cannot always be aware of every scene or line in a movie or television program. If you are watching a television show or movie and something happens that is a depression trigger for you, turn off the movie or show. If you're in a theater, walk out the door. You may decide to continue watching after that particular scene is over or you may not. The most important thing is to make the decision that is best for your mental health.
The difficulties and challenges caregivers face often trigger depression. As the mother of a child with significant special needs, I have personal experience with this. The physical, mental, and emotional demands on me are high, and so are the financial requirements. When that is combined with my condition of major depressive disorder, it's a perfect catalyst for a depressive episode.
I cope with all of this by asking for help and taking time for self-care. I cannot express to you how vital it is to your health and wellbeing to get help from others and to take time for yourself. Please, just trust me. You must do these things. You're much more likely to go into a major depressive episode if you don't take care of yourself. I know this because there was a time during which I didn't do these things, and my family and I had to deal with the consequences of my choices. This is why now I'm such an advocate of seeking help and practicing self-care.
Normal Life Stress
Finally, the stress we all face as part of life is a depression trigger. We can easily become overwhelmed and head into a depressive episode by simply trying to navigate through each day. The best methods for defeating this trigger are familiar to us all -- healthy eating habits, regular exercise, and getting enough (but not an excessive amount of) sleep.
In addition to these healthy habits, I've also minimized stress by learning to say no to some things, tackling only one or two projects at a time, planning a menu for the week and grocery shopping only once weekly, and decluttering my house. I've found that by eliminating some of the controllable stressful things in my life, I am able to cope better with uncontrollable stressors when they arise. This makes it less likely that I will relapse into a major depressive episode due to stress.
What are some major depression triggers for you? What coping strategies for depression triggers have worked for you?
Smith, J. (2018, June 27). How to Cope with Depression Triggers, HealthyPlace. Retrieved on 2020, February 20 from https://www.healthyplace.com/blogs/copingwithdepression/2018/6/how-to-cope-with-depression-triggers
Author: Jennifer Smith
how can I wait to see the dr til next week? I feel so down and blue
Hello, Sheila. I'm Jennifer, co-author of the Coping With Depression Blog. I am so sorry that you are struggling. I suggest calling your doctor and explaining how you are feeling right now. In the meantime, maybe some of the coping strategies listed in this article and others on this site might be helpful. I know they have helped me. Thank you for reaching out to us.