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Depression: Let’s support the people around us by understanding the condition & making them feel better

Feeling hopeless…..exhausted…..lonely…?? Then you might be suffering from Depression. It is the most common illness throughout the world. This can affect men or women but seems more common among women. It is different from mood fluctuations which people may experience in their normal life as temporary emotional responses to the challenges of everyday.

Few historical stats mentioned below will make you realize the magnitude of this mental disorder which has clenched many people as victims.
• As per WHO, during 2015 in India there were about ~56.7 Million people who suffered from depression, which accounted for about ~4.5% of total population at that time, number may surprise us we try to search for latest stats
• Also 36% of Indians are prone to this dreadful mental condition once in lifetime as per WHO
• As per ASSOCHAM among corporate employees ~43% suffer depression; the prevalence rate for depression & anxiety has increased about 45% to 50% in 2015 from 2008.
• Also ~40% corporate employees suffer from conditions like High blood glucose level, Depression & Hypertension due to very short duration of sleep of less than 6 hours in a day.
• Government estimates that one among every five people in country require counselling from either Psychiatric or Psychologist
• Out of every 100 people residing in urban areas of country every 3 residents suffer from depression
• Globally in between 2005 to 2015 number of people suffering from depression increased by 18% as per WHO

Depression is a mental disorder which can be characterised through constant depressed mood, loss of interest in any activities. This can last from 6 to 8 months. It is also known as clinical depression and can lead to variety of emotional and physical problems. It feels like there is some kind of burden in your mind.

 Psychological factors
 Life events
 Biological
 Genetics
 Environmental
 Personality
 Childhood trauma
 Some prescription drugs
 Abuse of recreational drugs
 Past head injury
 Chronic pain syndromes

 Depressed mood
 Restlessness
 Unintentional weight loss
 Insomania
 Loss of energy
 Feeling worthless
 Reduced interest in activities which gives happiness
 Slow movement
 Hopelessness
 Impaired ability to think or concentrate
 Suicidal thoughts


 Support: By educating family members, discussing practical solutions, stress management.
 Psychotherapy: Cognitive behavioural therapy.
 Drug treatment: Antidepressant
 Exercise
 Meditation
 Brain stimulating therapies

Antidepressant medication:

 Selective serotonin reuptake inhibitors (SSRIs)
 Tricycle antidepressant
 Atypical antidepressant
 Norepinephrine reuptake inhibitors(SNRIs)

But there is a warning from food and drug administration that antidepressant medications may increase suicidal thoughts within first few months of treatment.

Types of Depression:
 Unipolar depression: It includes Anxiety, Feeling of hopelessness, loss of interest in pleasurable activities, low energy, feeling guilt , loneliness, suicidal thoughts, irritable mood, weight loss.
 Bipolar Depression: It is also known as manic depression and long term minor depression. Symptoms are same as of Unipolar depression.
 Major depressive disorder with psychotic features: This includes false beliefs and detachment from reality.
 Postpartum Depression: Often experienced by women with a new born . Also known as postnatal depression .
 Major Depressive disorder with seasonal pattern: Countries which are having long or severe winter season likely to be more affected by this condition. It is also known as seasonal affected disorder.

Organisations in India which help in fighting depression are:

 The Mind Research Foundation
 Mind-Body Clinic
 Hope Trust India
 NIMHANS Centre for Wellbeing
 Cadabam’s
 Manipal Hospital

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