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Preventing Depression 

Several studies suggest that exercise may help prevent a first bout of depression, as well as a type of therapy called cognitive behavior therapy. Exercise and therapy also may help prevent depression from coming back and may improve symptoms of mild depression.

If you worry about getting depression, talk with your health care provider. Regular screening for depression helps find depression early, and early treatment may help you get better faster.

You also may be able to prevent depression by avoiding alcohol and drugs. Alcohol and drugs can trigger depression. And using them is often a sign that you have depression.

Keep depression from coming back

You may be able to prevent a relapse or keep your symptoms from getting worse if you do the following:

  • Take your medicine as prescribed. Depression often returns if you stop taking your medicine or don't take it as your health care provider advises.

  • Continue to take your medicine after your symptoms improve. Taking your medicine for at least 6 months after you feel better can help keep you from getting depressed again. If this is not the first time you have been depressed, your health care provider may want you to take medicine even longer. You may benefit from long-term treatment with antidepressants.

  • Continue cognitive behavioral therapy after your symptoms improve. Research shows that those who continued this type of therapy had less chance of relapse.

  • Eat a balanced diet.

  • Get regular exercise.

  • Get treatment right away if you notice that symptoms of depression are coming back or getting worse.

  • Keep healthy sleep patterns.

  • Avoid drugs and alcohol.

Author: StayWell Custom Communications
Last Annual Review Date: 7/1/2018
Copyright © The StayWell Company, LLC. except where otherwise noted.
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