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Cope Up With Depression This World Health Day

March 15 2017
Symptoms of Depression

Understanding where depression comes from is the first step towards treating it

What is Depression?

Feeling sad or depressed due to some reason or another? Feeling depressed can be a normal reaction to life's struggles, an injured self-esteem or losses.

But, when these feelings turn into intense sadness and starts interfering in your day-to-day activities, lasting for weeks at a time, it can be a sign of clinical depression. It may seem like all is lost, but the condition is treatable, and if left unchecked can turn into a serious health issue.

Symptoms of Depression

The National Institute of Mental Health, the world’s largest organisation focused on researching mental illness, says that symptoms of people suffering from depressive illnesses are not the same. The symptoms are highly individualistic, but here are some commonalities:

  • Fatigue
  • Worthlessness
  • Insomnia, early morning wakefulness, or excessive sleeping
  • Irritability, restlessness
  • Loss of interest in activities or hobbies
  • Difficulty concentrating, remembering details, and making decisions
  • Overeating or loss of appetite
  • Persistent aches or pains, headaches, cramps, or digestive problems
  • Suicidal thoughts/attempts

Current Status

Depression is a common illness worldwide, with more than 300 million people affected in all age categories. It can cause the affected person to suffer greatly and affect his/her routine life adversely. At its worst, depression can lead to suicide. Close to 8,00,000 people die due to suicide every year. Suicide is the second leading cause of death in 15 to 29-year olds. (Source: WHO website)

The Campaign by WHO

To deal with this grave situation and to educate people about depression, the World Health Organisation has launched a campaign for World Health Day 2017, the theme of which is depression, and the slogan - “Depression: let’s talk”. The idea is to break the stigma surrounding any kind of mental illness including depression, which prevents people from seeking medical help.

The Goal

The objective of this campaign is to motivate more people with depression, in all countries, to seek and get help. This one-year campaign began on 10th October 2016, World Mental Health Day.

The following are the specific objectives of the campaign:

  • Spreading information about depression to the public through the medium of schools, colleges and channels like news media, social media, blogs, etc.
  • People aware of its causes and possible consequences, and what help can be available for prevention and treatment.
  • Encourage people with depression to seek help
  • Encourage family, friends and colleagues living with them to provide them support and care.

Treatment of Depression

When you’re depressed, it can feel like you’ll never get out from under a dark shadow. However, even the most severe depression is treatable in the following ways:

  • Medication along with lifestyle changes can bring powerful relief
  • Staying connected to others is an essential part of depression treatment
  • Therapy can teach you lasting skills to help you fight depression

So, if your depression is keeping you from living the life you want to, don’t hesitate to seek help.

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