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PHILADELPHIA (CBS) – For those suffering with depression, the holidays can be anything but happy. So what can you do to help yourself? For one, don’t be afraid to ask for it.

If family functions or the office party only makes you feel worse than you already do, then skip them. No need to stress yourself out further, according to New Jersey Assistant Health Commissioner Lynn Kovich. But it’s not a good idea to just lock yourself in a room either.

“If they can visit a neighbor, go to the church service. I think many, many churches try to outreach to people who do not have places to go.”

If someone offers you the chance to spend the holidays with them and you’re comfortable with it, go with it. Should you find yourself alone, find a distraction, even if it’s just talking a walk. And realize mixing drugs and alcohol, which a lot of people do, can be deadly. If none of that works, check in with a mental health professional.

Reported by David Madden, KYW Newsradio

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