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Do you feel very low or extremely sad?

Modern life can be overwhelming and being a young person can feel very confusing. We all have good times and bad times. If your sad thoughts will not go away and you feel like you can’t go on, then you must talk to someone or get some help from a friend, family or an adult you trust.

There may be a clear reason for your sad thoughts, such as a break-up or argument with a friend or family member. Other times it just seems to happen. Boredom can also lead to us feeling fed up. Sometimes feeling like this can trigger lots of negative thoughts, such as ‘I’m useless’, ‘No-one loves me’ or ‘I will never be successful’. These feelings are usually false but can feel very believable at the time, and often strike hardest when we’re alone.

What is depression?

If you have been feeling this way for several weeks and are feeling low more often than you feel okay – or if your low mood is stopping you from doing things you usually enjoy, you may be experiencing an episode of depression. Other symptoms of depression include changes to your sleeping patterns, feeling hopeless, guilty, crying or feeling irritable for no reason.

If you’re feeling down, try some of these to lift your mood:

  • Relaxation or mindfulness techniques, and apps such as Headspace, CALM and smiling mind
  • Exercise is great for lifting mood as it releases endorphins – our natural feel-good chemical
  • Creating a happy box, book or starting a Pinterest page full of things you love can really help, e.g. places you want to go, bands you want to see, things you want to learn. And if you ever receive a nice message or a compliment, write it down to read another day.

How can I get help?

Talk to your GP. They will ask you some questions and give you advice on happens next. This may be a referral to another service such as school counselling or CAMHS.

Things you might find useful

I had a black dog, his name was depression

Short animation about what it’s like to live with depression.

Watch animation

Campaign Against Living Miserably (CALM)

Website for young men who are feeling down or in a crisis.

Visit CALM

Smiling Mind – free mindfulness app

Practice your daily meditation and mindfulness exercises from any device.

Smiling Mind App

Headspace app

A fun and easy to use intro into 10 minute meditation – offers a free 10-day trial. More features available with subscription.

Headspace App