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The holidays may be the most wonderful time of the year, but with all the hustle and bustle of the season, it may be an extra stressful time, too.

You may be busy with shopping, cooking, cleaning and traveling Ė all of which can quickly become overwhelming and exhausting. In addition, all the sweets and social events can change your routine and†make it hard to stay on top of chronic health conditions such as diabetes and heart disease.

Experts remind us that†taking care of yourself during the holidays can help reduce the holiday blues.

Here are some suggestions:

  • Eat sensibly and drink enough water. Consider eating a healthy snack before heading to parties so that you don't go overboard on high-fat, high-sugar or high-salt foods.
  • Add regular physical activity into each day.
  • Stick to your familyís normal routine. Donít stay too late at parties or stay up all night wrapping gifts. Keep your childís meal schedule, bedtime and household rules the same.
  • If you drink alcohol, remember to do so in moderation. Line up a sober ride home from any get-togethers.
  • Donít miss doses of your medication. Make sure to get refills if you plan to travel.
  • Get plenty of sleep. Donít overbook yourself; it is okay to say no to some invitations or skip some activities.
  • Take time to reduce stress. Try opening a good book, listening to soothing music or taking a hot bath.
  • Reach out to others. Ask for help from friends and family. You donít have to do every task and activity yourself.

Sources: Mayo Clinic, WebMD, American Academy of Pediatrics, Anxiety and Depression Association of America, American Psychological Association

For help with persistent feelings of anxiety and sadness, depression and high stress, make an appointment to see your health care provider. A JPS doctor can also give you a referral for an appointment at†Behavioral Health Services for diagnosis and treatment of emotional and behavioral disorders.

JPS provides outpatient behavioral health care to adults and adolescents for a range of mental health disorders including depression, bipolar disorder, schizophrenia and anxiety. The staff includes psychiatrists, resident physicians in training, psychiatric nurses, psychologists, licensed social workers, nurse practitioners and physician assistants.

†JPS Health Network

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