Too much stress over the holidays can lead to depression

While the sights and sounds of the holidays may be filled with excitement for some, for others, it can be a stressful time of year.

Dawne Adkins, education co-ordinator/community helpers co-ordinator at Suicide Information &Education Services said too much stress can lead to depression.

“Sometimes it goes back to the very basics. We all know, but forget things like getting enough sleep, or at least rest and balanced eating,” said Adkins.

“There’s a lot of treats out (during the holidays) and those kinds of things are OK, but consider how those things make you feel.”

A recent poll by the Angus Reid Institute suggested that 18 per cent of Canadians said they were “not too happy” and only one in six people were satisfied with their level of stress.

Add the additional weight of the holidays, and Adkins said stress levels can escalate pretty quick.

“Signs include not being able to sleep when you are supposed to, you feel blah or sad and don’t know why, you have a lack of interest in previously enjoyed activities or when you feel lost with people you care about,” said Adkins.

Exercise is something Adkins said is also extremely important.

“Often when we say exercise, we all have visions of going off to the gym which isn’t realistic for everybody. It’s just a matter of actually moving your body and making it possible to get outside,” said Adkins.

Adkins said depression can happen to any one at any time for any reason. Sometimes it can be pin pointed to one specific reason, but it can also happen randomly.

“It varies from person-to-person. I think we need to realize that any situation can cause somebody to have uncomfortable and sad feelings,” said Adkins.

She adds it’s important to reach out to somebody if you’re feeling stressed over the holidays and said it’s important not judge someone in need of help.

“Feelings are never wrong and sometimes people get caught up because they think they shouldn’t feel that way, but people do and that’s OK,” said Adkins.

If you have problems dealing with stress or depression contact Suicide Information &Education Services at 403-342-4966.

jonathan.guignard@bprda.wpengine.com