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      Depressed during the holidays

      The holidays can be a fun, happy time, but high expectations can make it stressful, explain specialists at Public Health Delta County.

      "A lot of times holidays are about families and gathering and things like that, and we may have larger expectations of what the holidays should be,â?? said Ruth Botbyl, Prevention Specialist. â??A lot of times they're not quite like that for a lot of people. So, if we expect it to be a fantastic time and all kinds of things going on, that doesn't always turn out. So, that can tap into some of our bad feelings.â??

      Unmet holiday expectations can lead to depression and substance abuse. The media can portray illusions of grandeur that may be unrealistic to the average person.

      If someone you know is depressed or abusing a substance, Public Health Delta County suggests being there for them.

      â??Oftentimes a good thing to do is offer support,â?? said Mary Claire Massi-Lee, Director of Substance Abuse Services. â??You can approach the person, talk to them, let them know that there is a concern; that you'd be willing to help connect them with that program, and help them make the call."They recommend calling the North Care Network at 1-800-305-6564 or visiting their website here. They deal with the entire Upper Peninsula and will direct you to the nearest facility to meet your specific needs.

      During these times it is important to keep a regular routine to prevent feelings of depression or turning to substances.

      "Keep a diet that is fairly normal,â?? Botbyl said. â??Which is tough to do to when thereâ??s all kinds of sweets and different kinds of special food all around."

      She also recommends plenty of sleep and taking care of oneâ??s self.

      For more information, visit Public Healthâ??s website.