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Ways to fight depression

LPC Andy Martin gives ways to fight depression. / Photo: Danielle Ledbetter

Depression is a very common mental illness.

The National Alliance on Mental Health (NAMI) estimates 16 million adults have had a major depressive episode in the past year.

Luckily, there are tons of ways to combat it. Licensed professional counselor Andy Martin says the first step is getting diagnosed by a professional.

He says, "Everybody has had the blues; everybody has gone through something that has depressed them but that's not the same as having clinical depression."

After you've been diagnosed, Martin suggests trying therapy.

"Therapy gives you behavioral tools to address this thing... Most people that I see with depression just want to stay in bed all day. Well that's not a great way to treat depression."

The key to treating depression is to occupy yourself and your time, according to the counselor.

Depression is a vicious cycle. In order to overcome it you have to find a way to break the cycle.

One way to break it is by just getting up and doing something, according to Martin.

He says, "Get up, take a walk, the more you're occupying your hands the better it gets."

Martin wants people battling depression to be encouraged, "Depression is something that you can manage. It's not something that has to take control of your life."

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