Monday, August 27, 2018

Top Depression Myths Exposed
Facts about major depression


Statements “Only women suffer from bouts of depression”; “Once you get it, you are strangled with it for the rest of your life”; or “It is only in the mind” depression myths? These are some of the statements one often comes across. Yes, there are myths abound about clinical depression, and they all make it hard to have the perspective of it both in terms of its nature and treatment.

Probably, this can be attributed to our propensity to club the word depression to a myriad range of moods and mental illnesses, as the case may be. By this, the real sense of clinical depression warranting treatment gets obscured.


Let’s find out some of the common Depression Myths and their truth:

1. Top depression myths are that depression is not under the sphere of medical illness

Clinical depression is definitely a grave medical issue with biological and genetic roots, affecting both the mind and the body. There is an increased level of stress hormones in the body of the people with depression. Their brain scan also reveals decreased activities in some parts of the brain.


2. Even if it is a medical problem, you can’t help it

Depression can be treated and over 80 percent of patients respond well. With the breakthrough in new medications, this would surely rise.
Ruling out any other causes of depression like thyroid problem should be done first. For this, the doctor should be contacted immediately, who after proper diagnosis of the cause, would prescribe medicines, psychotherapy or both.


3. Depression is similar to getting the ‘blues’. Hence, it is normal

Viewing depression like blues is like equating common cold with pneumonia. Everybody has his share of blues in daily life. They can be the result of some disappointing events or even some frivolous ones like a rainy day. Of course, they are short-lived and you don’t develop suicidal tendencies because of them. But, depression can last throughout life. It is also more agonizing and life-threatening.


4. The other depression myths are that depression is only a manifestation of self-pity

About 19 million people suffer from depression only in the US. The list of people who have been its victim include great names like Alexander the Great, Napoleon Bonaparte, Abraham Lincoln, Theodore Roosevelt, Winston Churchill, George Patton, abolitionist John Brown, Robert E. Lee, Florence Nightingale, Sir Isaac Newton, Stephen Hawking, Charles Darwin, J.P. Morgan, Barbara Bush, Ludwig von Beethoven and Michelangelo. These great people wouldn’t just while away their time pitying themselves!


5. The other depression myths include you can override depression through sheer willpower

Depression is a pathological condition just like diabetes or heart disease. You can’t will it away. It manifests due to certain chemicals changes in the body and hence you can’t get the better of it just through sheer willpower. In fact, taking medical advice tells a lot about your determination and courage to overcome it, as this condition is often stigmatized in society.


6. Another popular depression myths are that depression will go away on its own

Some very fortunate people may get cured of depression on their own but for the majority of cases, it lasts for a considerable period of time or even forever. People, who already have it once, also are at a greater risk to have more bouts of depression. Clinical depression can prove to be fatal and may result in suicide if left untreated.


7. Another common depression myths are that depression is part of the aging process

While it is not part of the aging process, it is true that elder people have more of the causes that can trigger it – monetary matters, failing health, loneliness etc. People over the age of sixty, are not tuned to accept depression as a normal medical disorder like the present generation and hence, do not seek medical help.


8. Women are the only victims of depression

The reported cases of women being affected by depression is twice that of men. But sometimes, cases go unreported as in some societies; men do not come forward to seek medical help. Successful suicide attempts are more prevalent among men compared to women. So, it is imperative that men seek medical advice for the symptoms of depression.


9. One of the depression myths is that depression is part of the growing up process and hence, teenagers and children do not get it

However we may wish to the contrary, children do become the victim of depression. As per the National Institute of Mental Health, one in 33 children and one in 8 adolescent suffer from depression every year. It is the duty of the adults to mark the symptoms of depression, as children would not able to vent their thoughts properly.


10. Depression is hereditary

If you have a history of depression in your family, you are genetically predisposed to it just like diabetes or high blood pressure. It doesn’t mean that you would surely get it though. It is just that you are at a higher risk than other people. So, go for medical treatment immediately, if you find any symptoms.

It is difficult to separate some depression myths from the fact, so if you’re unsure about something, it’s in your best interest to consult a physician.



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