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Depression: Introduction, prevalence, symptoms, causes, treatment

Everything you need to know about Depression

“There are wounds that never show on the body that are deeper and more hurtful than anything that bleeds.”
― Laurell K. Hamilton, Mistral’s Kiss

THE GARLAND OF DEPROSES!!!

After a proffered day of blooming and giving out happiness with those happy faces, although adorned with thorns it was time for those flowers to take some rest, it was that hour of the time when the dark sky was lit up by its companion stars and they sang in choir the hymns of friendship.

It was now time for my best friend to come out so that we could ponder about the whole day over a cup of coffee. Mind you my friend was like none other. I don’t know if I should address him? or her?. Well, I prefer her over him.

She was like none other, she was always adorned with a black long kurta. I never got to see her face and I never insisted on seeing one, she was afraid of light and only came out at night, she always used to be sad talking about only sadness, grief.

WANNA KNOW WHAT HER NAME WAS?

DEPRESSION #MY BEST FRIEND!!!!!

WHAT IS DEPRESSION?

“That’s the thing about depression: A human being can survive almost anything, as long as she sees the end in sight. But depression is so insidious, and it compounds daily, that it’s impossible to ever see the end.”
― Elizabeth Wurtzel, Prozac Nation

Have you ever wondered what “NED STARK” (GAME OF THRONES) would have to go through when all of his kingdoms were taken away and he was left with nothing? Ever wondered what Simran had to go through to finally have a happy life with Raj. Ever wondered when that 15-year-old child refused to have their favorite ice-cream what could it mean?

Well, one thing that is common in all these cases is “DEPRESSION“. But what do we mean by depression?

Depression can be defined as when you have no urge to get out of your bed when you have no urge to have that daily morning coffee while pondering over all the right swipes you made on tinder. When you have no urge to buy that new dress and put on your make-up. When even the news of Virat Anushka getting pregnant gives you no happiness.

Depression can be defined as a mood disorder wherein you are in a constant state of feeling sad or grief or anger and it succumbs your day to day activities (https://www.healthline.com/health/depression).

It can also lead to a person’s inability to function effectively both physically and mentally.

“WORLD HEALTH ORGANIZATION” (WHO) ESTIMATES THAT MORE THAN 264 MILLION PEOPLE ARE AFFECTED BY THIS.

So the next time your friend or anybody close to you is sad for more than a week than give some attention to him/her and help them out.

 

PREVALENCE

MAA, how am I supposed to tell you that the dark chocolate you brought for me and you keep asking continuously why I don’t eat it, or why lately I have been avoiding going out with my friends, or why I have lost half of my appetite, or why I keep having bad dreams at night?

HOW AM I SUPPOSED TO TELL YOU? that I googled it and I might be suffering from depression. HOW TO TELL YOU THIS? because like every time you won’t pay much attention to it and you will say “KUCH NAHI HAI THEEK HO JAYEGA AISI MAUSAM KI WAJAH SE HORHA HOGA”. And if I tell my friends they will laugh off at me treating me as an exclusive mental patient.

“HOW DO I TELL YOU THIS”

A lot of adolescents, children are afraid to tell their parents or friends that they are suffering from a mental illness because they might laugh off and be treated as a mental patient.

Because of this the rates of people suffering from depression and not getting the proper treatment are increasing day by day.

  • According to data from the National Survey on drug use and health 17.3 million adults equaling to 7.1% of all adults have experienced a major depressive episode in the past year
  • As per the WORLD HEALTH ORGANIZATION( W.H.O), 3 MILLION people were affected by depression by 2017.
  • The American Academy of Pediatrics, 2% to 3% of children ages 6 to 12 may have serious depression.
  • According to recent studies, men show more signs of depression than women particularly because men don’t express themselves as openly as women do.

 

FACTS AND MYTHS

  • MYTH: “Bhai ye sab tere dimaag mein hai ek cigrattee pee le aacha lagega.”
  • FACT: Depression is a psychological, social disorder which takes time to get treated, it not only causes mental problems but physical problems too. It is not just in one’s mind it doesn’t get treated in a short period of time but takes proper medication.
  • MYTH: “Bhai ye depression wagerah sirf ladkiyon mein hota tu mard hai”
  • FACT: Depression is not only limited to women or girls but it’s a myth that only women go through depression, the only difference is that men don’t often come out and express themselves or what they are going through, unlike women.
  • Men instead succumb to things like overworking, rash driving, drinking, etc which can also be some symptoms of depression.
  • MYTH: “Sirf kamzoor log ko ye sab faltu ke natak hote hai high-class wale natak hai”
  • FACT: The society has stigmatized depression as a sign of weakness. It has nothing to do with whether you are strong or weak, it’s a psychological order which can happen to anybody and everybody.
  • MYTH: It’s the same as being sad
  • FACT: Feeling down or sad is not the same as being depressed. Depression lasts for more than a week unlike being sad or letting down which gets cured within a short time span. It doesn’t go away on its own, unlike sadness. Depression includes not only getting sad but more feelings like that of grief, tense, empty.
  • MYTH: Depression isn’t a real illness
  • So the next time someone says to you that they are feeling depressed don’t just tell them to snap their fingers and it will be okay because neither are they THANOS nor are you IRON-MAN who knows everything and can cure it.

 

SIGNS AND SYMPTOMS OF DEPRESSION

  • “Does your toothpaste also contain ounces of “DEPRESSION”? which makes you feel unwanted, de-freshes your mouth, gives you a feeling of sadness, grief then you might want to change your toothpaste and you are in the right place to do that”
  • Some of the reasons why your toothpaste might contain Depression is as follow:
  • feeling low most of the time.
  • lack interest in daily activities like binge-watching F.R.I.E.N.D.S.
  • loss of appetite or overeating like not eating that dark chocolate which is your favorite.
  • disrupted sleeping patterns.
  • negative thoughts about self, life, or future
  • feeling guilty about past decisions.
  • feelings of unworthiness.
  • getting tired very quickly when in the past you used to be the fastest person alive to do everything and not be tired about it.
  • while everybody considered you to be the master of your decision you really can’t now make decisions, difficulty making decisions.
  • you try engaging in escapist behavior like drinking alcohol, doing drugs.

SOURCE: https://www.whiteswanfoundation.org/disorder/depression/?
https://www.helpguide.org/articles/depression/depression-symptoms-and-warning-signs.htm
https://www.medicalnewstoday.com/articles/325513#low-sex-drive

“That is all I want in life: for this pain to seem purposeful.”
Elizabeth Wurtzel, Prozac Nation

DIFFERENT TYPES OF DEPRESSION

  • Just like every marvel movie has its a sequence, every book has a number of pages, every Shahrukh Khan movie has a Raj in it and every dress has its alternatives similarly depression also has its kinds which are as follows:

MAJOR DEPRESSION

You might have this depression if you feel sad for most of the days in a week, when you have no urge to have those gossip sessions with your friends about the new bollywood movie.

Some of Major symptoms include:

  • Loss of interest or pleasure in your activities.
  • Trouble getting to sleep or feeling sleepy during the day.
  • Being tired and without energy.
  • Feeling worthless or guilty.
  • Thoughts of suicide.

PERSISTENT DEPRESSIVE DISORDER

Someone having depression for more than 2 years is called as persistent depressive disorder. Some of its symptoms include:

  • Change in appetite.
  • Lack of energy, fatigue.
  • Trouble concentrating or making decisions.
  • Feel hopeless.

SEASONAL AFFECTIVE DISORDER

It is a period of major depression, that most often happens during the winter months. When the days grow short and you get less and less sunlight. It typically goes away in the spring and summer.

BIPOLAR DISORDER

In this, the mood of a person ranges from extremely high to low depressive moods or sadness. It can also be called manic depression.

ATYPICAL DEPRESSION

In this type of depression, there is basically a pattern of depression, it can be cured with some positive thoughts and energy.

SOURCE: https://www.webmd.com/depression/guide/depression-types#3

 

WHAT CAUSES DEPRESSION?

Depression is like a girl next door, it can make a room in your heart without you knowing it.

Some of the common causes of depression can be:

      • STRESSFUL EVENT

loss of loved one or divorce or for that matter any traumatic event that might have happened in the past or in the present can also lead to depression.

      • POOR DIET

a poor diet can also lead to depression, a variety of mineral and vitamin deficiencies are known to cause depression

      • MEDICAL CONDITIONS

Chronic illness or diseases like ADHD or chronic illness can also lead to depression.

      • BRAIN STRUCTURE

People whose frontal lobe is less active scientists suggest that they are at higher risk of getting into depression.

Other events include are as follows:

      • PERSONAL HISTORY OF MEDICATIONS
      • MEDICATIONS
      • DRUG USE

 

HOW IS DEPRESSION TREATED: DIAGNOSIS/ TREATMENT/ THERAPY

“I’ll never forget how the depression and loneliness felt good and bad at the same time. Still does.”

When it comes to treating depression the most basic treatment is giving out medication or talk therapy by a clinically approved counselor or therapist. These might then normalize brain changes and normalize depression.

A person can even go for certain types of therapy in order to ease out depression some of the therapies include:

COGNITIVE BEHAVIOURAL THERAPY (C.B.T)

It is a type of psychotherapy that modifies our thought patterns. Helps to change our mood and help in easing out depression. The therapy dates back to the time of AARON T. BECK AND ALBERT ELLIS IN the 1950’S AND 60’S.

It basically involves talking about how we see the world and other people.

Also how our actions affect our behavior. It can provide a new way of looking at life. It basically includes taking sessions with the therapist and working out the solutions with them.

SOURCE: https://journeypureriver.com/treating-depression-cognitive-behavioral-therapy/

VISIT THE ABOVE SITE TO KNOW MORE ABOUT IT.

BEHAVIOUR THERAPY

It is indeed a component of C.B.T. but it mainly focuses on encouraging activities where people can be rewarded and feel good about them, to reverse the patterns of sadness, depression, withdrawal, inactivity.

INTERPERSONAL THERAPY

This therapy focuses on problems between the interrelations with each other. It is based on the idea that relationship problems can also lead to depression. This therapy focuses on your interpersonal relations and helps in coping with those problems or grief one is experiencing.

PSYCHOTHERAPY

Also known as talk therapy, it helps a person to deal with negative, tensed situations, it has been a major boom in helping cure depression although it can’t cure severe depression it can help you to come out of some situations with medications.

SOURCE: https://www.beyondblue.org.au/the-facts/depression/treatments-for-depression/psychological-treatments-for-depression

TREATMENTS

ANTIDEPRESSANTS

These are some medications given by particular registered clinical psychologists, although they may not help to cure depression it helps to ease out the symptoms of it.

(https://www.mayoclinic.org/diseases-conditions/depression/in-depth/antidepressants/art-20046273)

ANXIOLYTICS

These are kinds of anxiety drugs and help cure anxiety and any problem relating to anxiety disorder. They work really quickly so they are prescribed for a short period of time, although people with a history of substance misuse or addiction aren’t recommended for them.

(https://www.healthline.com/health/anxiolytics#how-they-work)

RELAXATION TREATMENTS

Apart from medications relaxation techniques can be used which help relieve stress and boost feelings of stress. We can practice yoga, meditation or music relaxation.

COPING AND SUPPORT: TO COPE WITH DEPRESSION!

“I believe that words are strong, that they can overwhelm what we fear when fear seems more awful than life is good.”
Andrew Solomon, The Noonday Demon: An Atlas of Depression

Even our favorite flavors of ice-cream keep changing from time to time, even MARVEL wasn’t consistent with its choice of villains then how do you expect depression to take on your back forever like betal on Vikram’s back.

Let’s see what can we do to cope up with depression:

REACH OUT AND STAY CONNECTED:

I know reaching out to people and staying connected with them can be one of the tedious tasks especially when you have to battle your own fight.

But reaching out to people who love you, care for you can help you snap out of it more easily. Making calls to your old friends and telling them to rant all you want you surely will feel much better than.

DO THINGS THAT MAKE YOU HAPPY

Depression takes a long toll on your happiness so try doing what you love doing like caring for a street dog, a trip to mountains, or just a long drive away from all the worldly worries. This will make you feel energized and give a positive vibe.

EATING HEALTHY

I know eating healthy was never your cup of tea but just for the sake of fighting this depression eat more healthy food, stop skipping your meals, eat your greens, eat that dark chocolate you have been gushing over to your best friend.

CHANNELING NEGATIVE THOUGHTS

Yes, it’s very difficult to think about something positive in such a situation but hello humans are IRON MAN who can battle out any evil from his/her life through focussed thinking and understanding.

Try covering your negative thoughts with positive, be in positive company, read positive quotes, and help yourself fight depression.

(https://www.helpguide.org/articles/depression/coping-with-depression.htm)

(https://www.whiteswanfoundation.org/disorders/mood-disorders/depression)

WANT TO BE TONY STARK TO YOUR SPIDERMAN, THOR TO LOKI AND YOU REALLY WANNA HELP SOMEONE BATTLING DEPRESSION THAN THESE ARE SOME OF THE FEW TIPS TO BE THE SUPER SAVER IN THEIR LIFE.

COMPASSION

The key to helping someone out from any illness is to be compassionate. Encourage them that they will come out of this stronger.

Make it a point that if they open to you about it you will understand them and help them get better with the situation.

SPEND TIME WITH THEM

They are going to have days when they will feel like they are the happiest person alive and then sometimes they might feel like they are gonna die, they are the worst person.

During these days spend time with time, be there with them whenever they need you. Be their 3 a.m. friend to listen to whatever they have to say.

HAVE PATIENCE

Dealing with depression is not an easy task as much as it is a tedious task for them it is for you too to help them get out of it. But if you really wanna be their suit of shining armor then be patient with them, listen to whatever they have to say.

Appreciate them, even if they tell you the same story again listen with so much interest as if you have never heard it.

( https://www.healthline.com/health/how-to-help-a-depressed-friend)

(https://www.ditchthelabel.org/depression-how-you-can-help/?)

AND IF YOU KNOW SOMEONE WHO IS IN DIRE NEED TO GET PROFESSIONAL HELP THEN VISIT THIS PAGE IT HAS ALL THE REQUIRED NUMBERS AND INFORMATION.

https://indianhelpline.com/SUICIDE-HELPLINE/

LET’S NOT ANOTHER NED STARK DIE OF DEPRESSION LIKE, LET’S PUT OUR SUPERMAN CAPES AND FIGHT IT OUT……

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Written by Amna Alim

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Nidhi Dahiya

Depression is the most common and one of the reasons for committing suicide in India. I hope, in coming years, India will be able to overcome this disorder. You are already doing a great. Keep it up.

Brinda S

Very informative.

Lutfia Khan

your marvel references add such a unique touch to the articles! very well written

Riya Rajkotiya

Very informative

Tanisha Ajmani

Very informative. Well written!

Khushi Garg

The article is really interactive and informal in nature and uses great examples to explain specific terms and symptoms. Although, I feel that the words low, grief, etc shadow the main and most important term associated with Depression which is, “HOPELESSNESS”, it is a major cause of negative thoughts like suicide and unhealthy practices like drinking alcohol and inducing drugs. Well written, tho!

Samiha Chawla

The begging is what brought me to this article. I like the way you’ve made this so interactive and informative. You’ve given real life examples as well. Everything has been mentioned clearly. I think that you could have given a little more details about the treatment. Well written otherwise.

Jigyasa vashistha

thanks for writing …this is so wonderful article..loved it 🙂

Kritika Bhair

wonderfully written.

Jigyasa vashistha

very very informative … keep writing:)

Mathari Kumar

Great article, clearly written about all the myths and facts in depression. Explained in detail

poly

Amna Alim ,very nice to read your article which is shining with your intelligence and dedication..with a proper respect towards you and your work I want to add one suggestion to make it much better.
It will be more helpful or much informative if you add the physiology of brain and brain areas which is related to depression.
As depression has much bigger psychodynamics than other mental health disorders.. that’s why PPL need to understand what’s going on with in one’s head.
And adding one pictorial presentation of brain parts ..or comparing the brain between a normal one and a person with depression will be more useful for this content.
Thank you so much.

Neha Varur

Very well written 🙂
Why is it so common
How would people cope up with it in the past

Rakshana.A

Got to know more about depression! Thank you

Bhavya

There is a lot of false information about depression and stress on the internet, it being such a common phenomenon these days. So I’m glad that you chose to bring the right, well researched information to share with us. I genuinely found this information can be extremely useful. Great job