If you have suicidal thoughts

If you think you may hurt yourself or attempt suicide, get help right now:

  • Call 911 or your local emergency number immediately.
  • Call a suicide hotline number — in the United States, call the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline at 800-273-TALK (800-273-8255) to reach a trained counselor.

If you're feeling suicidal, but you aren't immediately thinking of hurting yourself, seek help.

  • Reach out to a close friend or loved one — even though it may be hard to talk about your feelings.
  • Contact a minister, spiritual leader or someone in your faith community.
  • Call a suicide crisis center hotline.
  • Make an appointment with your doctor, other health care provider or mental health provider.

Get help when you need it

Asking for help can be hard for men. But without treatment, depression is unlikely to go away, and it may get worse. Untreated depression can make you and the people close to you miserable. It can cause problems in every aspect of your life, including your health, career, relationships and personal safety.

Depression, even if it's severe, usually improves with medications or psychological counseling (psychotherapy) or both. If you or someone close to you thinks you may be depressed, talk to your doctor or a mental health provider. Have the courage to ask for advice or seek help when you need it.

Male depression and coping skills

It takes effort to practice healthy coping skills rather than denying or ignoring symptoms of depression, or trying to blunt your feelings with alcohol or other drugs. Treatment with a doctor or mental health provider can help you learn healthy coping skills. These may include:

  • Goals. Set realistic goals and prioritize tasks.
  • Support. Seek out emotional support from a partner or family or friends.
  • Activities. Engage in activities you enjoy, such as ball games, fishing or a hobby.
  • Decisions. Delay making important decisions, such as changing jobs, until your depression symptoms improve.
  • Health. Live a healthy lifestyle, including eating healthy and exercising regularly, to help promote better mental health.

Many effective treatments are available for depression. So don't try to tough out male depression on your own — the consequences could be devastating.

May. 15, 2013 See more In-depth