Depression Awareness Week 19 April 2010 Print

Depression Awareness Week 19 April 2010.

Depression is the most common psychological disorder in the western world and the World Health Organisation predicts that it may soon be the second largest cause of illness world-wide. One in ten of the population are affected at any one time and 20% or more will experience the condition in their lifetime.

This kind of true depression is not the same experience as a few days of feeling down nor is it a sign of weakness, self pity or something which can be dealt with by ‘pulling oneself together’.

In our society the true meaning of the term ‘depression’ has become blurred, masking the fact that real clinical depression exists and must be taken seriously.

Symptoms vary in type, severity and cultural expression but the depressive condition has been unequivocally scientifically validated. Winston Churchill called it his ‘black dog’ while for many women it’s known as the ‘baby blues’.

Depression can develop at any age including childhood. Women are twice as likely as men to present with the condition while men are three times more likely to successfully commit suicide when depressed. Sadly in men
the condition is often missed.

So what is clinical depression? There are different kinds of depressive disorder such as a depressive episode, postnatal depression, seasonal affective disorder (SAD) through to manic depression (bipolar disorder) and psychotic depression.