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Holiday Depression: 11 Tips for Avoiding Common Triggers

First Posted: 12/17/2011 10:32 am EST Updated: 12/18/2011 8:18 am EST

By Tammy Worth

It's a myth that suicide is more common around the holidays (springtime is actually the peak). But holiday cheer isn't a given either.

High expectations, money woes, and other holiday hazards can spell trouble for anyone, but especially those prone to depression.

With a bit of foresight and planning, however, holidays can leave you feeling up, not down. Follow these tips for a successful holiday.

Plan Ahead
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Spend some time figuring out how to take care of yourself during this time, says John Sharp, M.D., a psychiatrist at Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center, in Boston.

Come up with restorative routines, such as reading a book or napping, and write them on a calendar. In between shopping and baking, make sure these routines don't fall by the wayside.

"Figure out what basics are going to help you get through the holidays and make them a priority," Dr. Sharp says.

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Filed by Sarah Klein  |