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This content is taken from the University of Groningen, University of Cambridge & University Medical Center Groningen (UMCG)'s online course, Young People and Their Mental Health. Join the course to learn more.

Skip to 0 minutes and 9 seconds SPEAKER 1: If you feel down, there’s a lot that you can do to feel better. It’s important to find ways that are helpful to you, because there’s no one method that works for everyone. We will list a number of things that work well for many people. If you want to improve your mood, it’s definitely worth trying one or more of these methods.

Skip to 0 minutes and 30 seconds SPEAKER 2: Don’t keep your problems to yourself. Talk about it. Sharing your problems and worries with someone else can be a great relief. You may talk to your friends, your parents, your counsellor, or someone else you trust. In case you prefer talking to someone who doesn’t know you, there are telephone helplines such as the Child Line in the UK, the Teen line in the US, the Kids Help phone in Canada, and the Kids Helpline in Australia.

Skip to 1 minute and 0 seconds SPEAKER 3: When you feel tired and out of energy, staying on the sofa or in bed isn’t a good idea. Do something. It’s best to make a plan in advance and stick to the plan.

Skip to 1 minute and 12 seconds SPEAKER 4: One of the best things to do is to be active, for example, by running. When you’re doing physical activity, you feel less stressed and your brain works better. This also helps against depression while improving your physical health.

Skip to 1 minute and 29 seconds SPEAKER 5: It’s best not to drink alcohol if you’re under age 18. This is especially true if you’re depressed, because drinking can make your depression symptoms even worse. Moreover, if you’re depressed, you’re more likely to become addicted. This is also true for other drugs. Just don’t do it.

Skip to 1 minute and 44 seconds SPEAKER 6: A simple thing that can make you feel better is every day, write down three things that have made you happy or grateful. It may sound stupid, but it does work. Thinking about positive things does make you feel satisfied and improves your mood. So like today, I unexpectedly had the first hour of school, so I could sleep in a bit longer.

Skip to 2 minutes and 7 seconds Today, I also won a soccer match, which was pretty cool. And we had pizza for dinner, so that tipped it all off.

Skip to 2 minutes and 17 seconds SPEAKER 1: Sometimes depressive problems do not disappear, whatever you try. In that case, it’s probably a good idea to seek help from a mental health professional, for instance, a psychologist. You should definitely seek help if you have felt depressed for a long time and are not getting better, you are unable to do the things that you normally do, your school results are going down, you think about hurting yourself, or ending your life, you feel you are going crazy. Why seek treatment for physical complaints and not for psychological ones? The professionals are there to help and support you. Just do it.

Depressed, what next?

In this video young people explain which steps you can undertake when you’re feeling down. Which of these approaches works best is different per person.

What would be the best approach for you?

Do you need more tips? You can find them on the website of Helpguide.

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Young People and Their Mental Health

University of Groningen

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