The right strategies to get help
How do you break out of loneliness and depression? Though important, it isn’t by any means an easy task – and you might not have the energy to do it. Still, there are things that can help.
Mental health providers and medications
Sometimes, you need extra help to take care of your mental health. If you are struggling with depression, or having a particularly bad flare-up, add a psychiatrist and a therapist to your treatment team. There are also many different antidepressants available for depression, including Selective Serotonin Reuptake Inhibitors such as citalopram (Celexa), Fluoxetine (Prozac), and sertraline (Zoloft).
Some types of antidepressants, serotonin-norepinephrine reuptake inhibitors like duloxetine (Cymbalta) and venlafaxine (Effexor) can also help with pain as well. Exactly how they help with pain is not fully understood. It may involve a change in the neurotransmitters in the spinal column that reduce pain signals for chronic pain, arthritis, and neuropathic pain.
Looking to learn more about mental health? Check out these Top 4 Questions answered by a Licensed Clinical Social Worker.
Take care of your physical health
Taking care of your basic life needs can do a lot for your physical and mental health, and can help stave off depression as well as give you more energy to go out and be active with friends. Reserve time and energy to get an appropriate amount of exercise, eat a healthy balanced diet, and get plenty of rest – not only will you feel accomplished, but you will also feel better and will have more energy to devote to yourself and your life.
Find your fun
Lupus can keep you from doing your favorite activities, but there is always a way to enjoy yourself. Try to find fun things that you enjoy and that don’t take a lot out of you. Take time to relax and enjoy yourself – it is your life, after all. Having lupus doesn’t mean that you can’t enjoy it.
Look the way you want to look
Taking some time to look good can make you feel good. Looking like a million bucks can help you feel like a million bucks. Makeup, clothes, and freshly done hair or self-care can all help!
Find the positive things in life
Lupus can be overwhelming, painful, and frustrating, but there is always a bright spot or silver lining. Taking time to focus on positive things – your strengths, a beautiful thing, something good that happened today, even a small success – can help boost your mood and keep you out of the depths. It’s not a cure-all, but, especially with such a negative news cycle, lingering on the good things can be a boon.
The chemical imbalance of depression and the pain of lupus may involve medications, but social isolation is very fixable. Finding support groups is a great way to bring you into contact with other lupus warriors. Volunteering for causes or activities that you enjoy can also help. Your friends are still there, too. If you can’t meet in person or make a call, text, or reach out online. If you want to get more old-school, you can always send a letter or a card. Who doesn’t love getting mail?
If you find yourself really needing help right now, you can call the national helpline:
They can help you immediately, or just be someone to talk to. It’s free, paid for with tax dollars, so use it if you need it.