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Best of 2012: GoodTherapy.org’s Top 10 Websites for Depression

GoodTherapyorg-Depression-Blogs

While some people experiencing depression are aware of their symptoms, others are so accustomed to feeling lethargic, antisocial, or generally unhappy that they don’t realize they are depressed. According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, 9.5% of American adults have what is classified as a depressive disorder, with diagnoses more prevalent among women.

Depression can be triggered by something specific, such as the loss of a loved one or a relationship breakup, but sometimes there is no identifiable cause. Symptoms or effects of depression may include hopeless or negative thoughts, insomnia, worry or anxiety, body aches, and intimacy issues.

Extensive research has been done on different types of depression, possible links to suicidal ideation, coping methods, treatment, and more. Depression can have ripple effects far beyond the person living with it, so researchers have also studied its influence on the families and work environments of those with depression.

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In addition to resources in the form of testimonials or forums for those with depression symptoms, there is an abundance of information online that can help loved ones of those experiencing depression. As with our previous top 10 lists (ADHD websites and grief and loss websites), we selected the 10 best depression resources on the web for 2012—GoodTherapy.org excluded—to help people better understand and cope with depression. Among the criteria we used to select our top 10 websites are quality and depth of content, presentation, and functionality.

  • Families for Depression Awareness: Families for Depression Awareness (FFDA) is a comprehensive resource for families coping with depressive issues. A nationwide nonprofit organization that strives to inform the general public about the signs and symptoms of depression, FFDA also offers much-needed support to depressed individuals and their families. In addition to news, interviews with experts, and training webinars, FFDA offers a “depression wellness analyzer” feature, “mental health family tree” tool, and a “depression and bipolar test.”
  • Depression Forums: A rich online community for individuals struggling with all aspects of depression, the Depression Forums bring more than 73,000 members together. Topics range from recovery and coping to therapy and medication. Depression Forums also offers space for members to post personal blogs and review depression-related news.
  • The Depression Center: The Depression Center is an advanced online community that offers visitors a program for managing and understanding their depression. Upon registration, users can connect with others through an online support group, create goals and tasks for their individual plans, and access downloadable workbooks and educational materials. In addition, The Depression Center offers a forum for asking an expert questions as well as a web-based depression and anxiety test.
  • International Foundation for Research and Education on Depression: The International Foundation for Research and Education on Depression (iFred) is a nonprofit organization dedicated to fighting the stigma that often surrounds depression. Citing the fact depression is 90% treatable, iFred focuses on increasing the number of people getting treatment while reducing the negative attitudes associated with depression. Online support groups and a local resource directory supplement the comprehensive information available. iFred accepts donations to advance depression research and fund education initiatives.
  • Depression and Bipolar Support Alliance: The Depression and Bipolar Support Alliance (DBSA) strives to empower individuals struggling with depression and bipolar, and offers a wealth of resources, including downloadable educational materials and self-help tools. In addition, DBSA provides an informative guide to finding the right treatment, and offers a support group locator with online and in-person chapters across the United States.
  • All About Depression: After its beginnings as a doctoral dissertation by founder and clinical depression expert Dr. Prentiss Price-Evans, All About Depression has evolved into a publicly available depression resource. All About Depression provides news and research as well as information about causes, types, and treatment options. Site visitors can access self-help tools, online workshops, and exercises to help manage stress, depression, and anxiety.
  • Help for Depression: Founded and run by Healthline.com, Help for Depression offers a multifaceted approach to managing and coping with depression, and examines the various ways it can be treated. Help for Depression provides information on not only psychotherapy and medication, but also alternative methods and lifestyle changes that depressed individuals may find helpful.
  • Depression Understood: Depression Understood was designed to provide peer support to individuals with depression. Two active, main chat rooms provide a space for people to connect and share their stories. Individuals can also post on forums and access depression-related blogs. Depression Understood also offers a database of global emergency contacts as well as academic articles and news on depression and related issues.
  • Depression Marathon: Depression Marathon is an inspirational personal blog that details the everyday struggles surrounding major depression. The author, a health professional and runner, has been blogging about her experiences since 2008 and has earned many “best of” blog awards. Topics range from sobriety to medication and put an easily relatable, personal face on depression.
  • Fighting the Darkness: My Secret Battle with Depression: Fighting the Darkness is a personal blog maintained by Jamie Leggatt, a mother and wife who was diagnosed with clinical depression at the age of 17. Determined to fight the stigma frequently associated with depression, Leggatt details daily life with depression from a down-to-earth perspective. Fighting the Darkness has a large community following, and accepts guest posts on various topics as well as other personal stories.

Don’t see your favorite depression-related website? Nominate it here.

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Comments
  • Justine January 18th, 2013 at 3:06 PM #1

    It has been my experience that getting someone to admit that they are depressed is the hardest part, so how you would even get someone feeling like this to take a look at any of these websites kind of goes beyond what I would know what to do. I have kicked and screamed at friends before that they need to get help, but until they are ready to see that for themselves then it is almost impossible to get them to act. I know that my approach is probably not the best but sometimes you just get so frustrated that it’s hard to know how to react.

  • donald January 18th, 2013 at 11:50 PM #2

    having been through a depression episode in the past,I can say with confidence that any form of help is welcome.but more so in the form of forums.when a depressed person is able to interact with others and can air his/her grievances that serves a lot more help than say reading a help article.

    all the sites and people behind them working to help those with depression should be commended.it is a great service what they are doing and thank you for bringing a collection of such great sources.

  • Archer January 19th, 2013 at 4:19 AM #3

    I actually looked at a few of these and thought that they had some really great resources to offer.

    Then again, I am not depressed and they make perfect sense to me.

    So maybe if I was a friend or a family member of someone struggling with this this would at least give me something to show to them and help them realize that there can be hope and improveemnt in their future.

  • JDisher January 21st, 2013 at 3:53 PM #4

    great info, great resources, thanks for all you do

  • melissa January 22nd, 2013 at 12:19 AM #5

    @Archer:Thanks to your comment,I just had a great idea!Because it can be so hard to actually make use of and fully make sense of any resource when one is depressed,why not acquire a little bit of knowledge now?!I shall read more about depression because I tend to feel low quite easily and the things I can pick up may help me in dealing with those situations.

    Also,it can make for some very good advice to someone who is actually depressed.Will be better for them to hear from someone they know rather than to read it online too.

  • Mark Myhre August 6th, 2013 at 3:25 PM #6

    Depression is something which can be best handled on a personal level. All this does not mean that one should leave a depressed person but the idea is to make him realize hat there is nothing like depression in this beautiful world. So if you are concerned regarding the person do not let the concern come at your face , act as if everything is perfectly fine.

  • Jerry De Luca February 10th, 2014 at 7:47 PM #7

    Rigorous exercise has definitely helped me in my depression.
    Natural High: The Effects of Exercise On Depression
    mybestbuddymedia.com/2014/02/exercise-depression.html

  • Sarah Lopez March 1st, 2014 at 5:07 AM #8

    Instead on focussing on my depression i started focussing on a few things that I actually enjoy in life.. this is pretty much inspired by the happiness social media happygroover com

  • I Be Here Advice March 30th, 2014 at 4:19 PM #9

    Look at depression and anxiety as if the devil is playing games with you. Ask God to be your joy.

  • Depression Definition August 24th, 2014 at 2:20 PM #10

    So many things cause stress and depression in daily life. Stress can appear in the body in many ways and forms. It is not easy to prevent stress. This is the number one health problem for most people. Although stress it self cannot be a cause of death, the side effects from it can be. Stress is brought on differently in every person and for some people; it is a debilitating disease that can ruin an entire life. One way to help prevent stress and depression is to have a good diet. You need to make sure that you are filling your body with healthy foods that will support your mental and physical health.

  • Brian August 29th, 2014 at 5:09 AM #11

    I suffered from depression for years until I discovered tools for coping with and beating my depression.

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