Life is full of wonderful moments, however, at times there are also moments of tragedy. Such a tragedy may be the death of a loved one. Mourning a death is a unique experience. Losing someone close to you can be earth-shattering. The loss can trigger feelings of grief, which for some go away in time but for others may lead to depression. If you are already suffering from depression, a loss can worsen the condition. Depression as mentioned before causes prolonged feelings of sadness, which can disturb one’s day-to-day routine.

How to identify if it’s depression or just grief?

After facing the death of a loved one, it is natural to grieve. Feeling sad and upset for their loss is part of the healing process. In both cases, you may withdraw from social surroundings and suffer from intense feelings of sadness. Look out for these particular symptoms that show a person may be depressed rather than grieving:

  • Pro-longed periods of sadness — all the time. Grieving people experience sadness in waves, with fluctuations in their mood.
  • Depressed people may have delusions or hallucinations. These are when the individual sees things that are not there and hears voices in their head. Typically, delusions are not present in people that are grieving.
  • Feeling worthless and hating oneself. Losing your self-esteem is a sign of depression. Those that are grieving don’t typically have this issue.
  • Isolating yourself and dissociating yourself from society can be a sign of depression. Although, when you’re grieving it is common to avoid social settings, people going through grief may not shun away those trying to support them.

If you are experiencing any of these symptoms of depression, you may want to seek for help from a doctor or counsellor.

How to take care of yourself after losing a loved one?

After losing someone from your life, it may be difficult to focus on taking care of  yourself. However, some simple steps can help you feel physically and emotionally better.

  • Exercise regularly
  • Focus your attention on learning new skills
  • Get 7-8 hours of sleep, per day
  • Join a support group with people that have gone through the loss of a loved one
  • Hang out with your friends and family members
  • Call close companions when you are feeling low

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