ZocdocAnswersHow can I stop feeling despondent?

Question

How can I stop feeling despondent?

I am a 29 year old male. I recently experienced a significant loss and can't help but feel despondent. I want to move on with my life. What can Ido?

Answer

I am sorry to hear that you have experienced a recent loss. It can be normal to experience symptoms of sadness and grief, but these should slowly abate over time. If you are having trouble functioning because of your grief symptoms, then it is worth talking to your primary care doctor or your psychiatrist. One important thing your doctor can help to do is distinguish between grief symptoms (which are normal) and any potentially complicating grief-related depression. If there is a component of depression, that may need to be treated and your doctor can help you with that. Unfortunately, treating the depression component will not make the other grief symptoms better. If the grief symptoms have been going on for over 6 months then you may be suffering from something known as complicated grief. This is defined as significant social impairment from grief more than 6 months from the loss. Many cases of complicated grief will respond to psychotherapy or counseling, and so you may want to get a referral to a therapist from your primary care doctor or psychiatrist. Start by setting up an appointment with your doctor. They will help you decide what treatments, if any, are needed at this time.

This answer is for general informational purposes only and is not a substitute for professional medical advice.

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