Nikki Sanderson health: Former Coronation Street star’s ‘very bad’ disorder – symptoms

Nikki Sanderson joined Coronation Street at the tender age of 15 – and, at 21, she left with a bright future. But the star admitted her 20s were filled with “very, very bad depression”. The Blackpool-born actress revealed to the Mirror Online about her plunge into darkness. “If I go from a busy lifestyle to nothingness it’s very hard,” she admitted. Remembering back to the time she left the renowned soap, Nikki added: “I suffered depression in my 20s and it was a very, very, bad time.”


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In a candid Instagram post in 2018, Nikki revealed to her fans that she had kept quiet about her condition.

It read: “This is the first time I have openly and publicly admitted this, as like so many, I had been ashamed and embarrassed… I have suffered with depression in the past.”

Am I feeling low or is this depression?

Mental health charity Mind explained: “We all have times when our mood is low, and we’re feeling sad or miserable about life.

“Usually these feelings pass in due course.” But, with depression, the low mood persists for “a couple of weeks”, and “the feelings are interfering with your life”.

Symptoms of depression

Mind lists the following symptoms of depression, whereby you may feel:

  • Down, upset or tearful
  • Restless, agitated or irritable
  • Guilty, worthless and down on yourself
  • Empty and numb
  • Isolated and unable to relate to other people
  • Finding no pleasure in life or things you usually enjoy
  • A sense of unreality
  • No self-confidence or self-esteem
  • Hopeless and despairing
  • Suicidal

This, in turn, may affect how you normally behave, and could result in:

  • Avoiding social events and activities you usually enjoy
  • Self-harming or suicidal behaviour
  • Difficulty speaking, thinking clearly or making decisions
  • Losing interest in sex
  • Difficulty remembering or concentrating on things
  • Using more tobacco, alcohol or other drugs than usual
  • Difficulty sleeping, or sleeping too much
  • Feeling tired all the time
  • No appetite and losing weight, or eating too much and gaining weight
  • Physical aches and pains with no obvious physical cause
  • Moving very slowly, or being restless and agitated

Self care

Different self care techniques are individualistic. This means what may work for you one day, may not work for you the very next day.

People are unique, so whatever self-care techniques feel good to you – listed below – is the best thing for you.

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One activity is to get moving – going for a brisk walk may be just the thing to get a more clear head.

Sometimes, a more vigorous activity, such as jogging, could potentially be helpful.

Although you may not feel like it, just take a shower and get dressed – regardless if you’re leaving the house or not – it may improve your mood.

Mind recommends setting realistic and achievable goals, such as cooking yourself a meal. Achievements can help boost your self confidence and encourage bigger goals.


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Mind encourages people suffering from depression to share their experiences with someone close.

If nobody comes to mind, Samaritans run a 24-hour service where you can be listened to.

Mind offers a supportive online community, called Elefriends, so you can talk to other people who may feel similar. Then you can support each other.

Back to Nikki, the 36-year-old is grateful she’s in a much better space, mentally. She confessed: “I’m lucky my mind is healthy now.”

But her current state of mind doesn’t guarantee she’ll be free from negative emotions.

“I have to stay busy to avoid the feeling of a lull,” she said. “I’m fortunate I always have someone at the end of the phone.”

And, during the global pandemic, she’s had her long-term boyfriend of five years, Greg Whitehurst, to keep her company.

Watch out for Nikki’s former colleagues on Coronation Street Icons: Audrey Roberts – 40 Fabulous Years, showing on ITV, Friday June 26 at 8.30pm.

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