World Health Day – DEPRESSION

WHAT ON EARTH IS WORLD HEALTH DAY?

This year the theme is DEPRESSION.

What is depression all about?
WHY is depression a serious illness?
WHY are we depressed?
WHY are our teenagers depressed?
WHY are so many people taking anti-depressants?

WHY is the Global Depression Drug Market $16.8 Billion by 2020? (1)

So in three years’ time, we have been told this illness is going to cost us $16,800,000,000 and this confirms things are going to get worse.

WHY are there billions and billions of dollars going towards making drugs that push down (depress), something in our body?

Do we actually know what depression is?
Do we know what causes depression?

Do we understand all this stuff about depression?

Types of Depression Disorders

Major Depressive Disorder
Clinical Depressive Disorder
Dysthymic Disorder
Psychotic Depression
Postpartum Depression
Seasonal Affective Disorder

Global Depression Drug Market

Atypical anti-psychotics
Tricyclic anti-depressants
TeCAs – Tetracyclic anti-depressants
SNRI – serotonin-norepinephrine reuptake inhibitors
SSRI – selective serotonin reuptake inhibitors
MAOIs – monoamine oxidase inhibitors
Beta-blockers
Benzodiazepines
(1)

So what are the bigwigs – those responsible for our World Health telling us about WORLD HEALTH DAY?

What you are about to read is taken from the World Health Day website for 2017.

WHO – the World Health Organization has launched a one-year campaign and the goal is that more people with depression in all countries, seek and get help.

They want us to tell them and others about activities we are planning for the Depression: let’s talk campaign through their online app. (2)

23 February 2017 (3)

Depression is the largest cause of disability worldwide

18% increase between 2005 and 2015 of number of people living with depression

80% of this disease burden is among people living in low and middle income countries

New set of posters have been released 14 February 2017

Americas
Africa
Eastern Mediterranean
Europe
South-East Asia
Western Pacific

Two of the posters depict a conversation in emergency settings. In humanitarian emergencies and ongoing conflict, as many as 1 in 5 people are affected by depression and anxiety. (2)

They have videos about a black dog and his name is depression.

Talking is the first step towards recovery, says
WHO Goodwill Ambassador for Sustainable Development Goals and Health (2)

Depression is an illness that can happen to anybody. It causes mental anguish and affects people’s ability to carry out everyday tasks, with sometimes devastating consequences for relationships with family and friends. At worst, depression can lead to suicide.
Fortunately, depression can be prevented and treated. (2)

We have handouts on depression which provide general information on the characteristics of depression and how depression can be prevented and treated. They are being produced in Arabic, Chinese, English, French, Russian and Spanish.
Note – these versions will be made available on WHO website as they are finalised.
http://www.who.int/campaigns/world-health-day/2017/handouts-depression/en/

So it is World Health Day and the topic is Depression and the only handout is in English.
Does this give us confidence?  

Are those non English speaking people waiting?
WHY has nothing been published for this big health day topic?

WHO IS WHO?
WHAT DO THEY DO?

WHO is the World Health Organization.

The constitution came into force on 7 April 1948 – a date that is now celebrated every year as World Health Day.

Their goal is to build a better, healthier future for people all over the world.

They work alongside governments and other partners to ensure the highest attainable level of health for all people.

Together they strive to –

  • Combat infectious diseases like influenza and HIV.
  • Address non-communicable ones like cancer and heart disease.
  • Help mothers and children survive and thrive, so that they can look forward to a healthy old age.
  • Ensure the safety of the air people breathe, food they eat and water they drink and medicines and vaccines they need.
  • 7000 people
  • 150 country offices
  • 6 regional offices
  • Geneva Headquarters

The primary role of WHO is to direct and coordinate International health within the United Nations’ system.

Main areas of work are:

  • Health systems
  • Promoting health through the life-course
  • Non-communicable diseases
  • Communicable diseases
  • Corporate services
  • Preparedness, surveillance and response

WHO support countries as they coordinate the efforts of multiple sectors of the government and partners including –

  • Bi and multilaterals
  • Funds and foundations
  • Civil society organisations
  • Private sector

to attain their health objectives and support their national health policies and strategies. (4)

WHO is governed by the World Health Assembly – the supreme decision-making body and its main function is to determine the policies of the Organization.
The World Health Assembly meet in Geneva in May each year and is attended by delegations from all 194 Member States. (5)

Now you know who WHO are, their goals and what they do and where they work and who runs the show so to speak – in other words WHO governs WHO.

Next – you have a long list of over 200 WHO programmes, partnerships and projects from African Programme for Onchocerciasis Control to Zoonoses and veterinary public health.
http://www.who.int/entity/en/

If we just stop and click the above link, most of us would struggle with names like Echinococcosis.
Is this huge A to Z list a confirmation WHY WHO needs 7000 staff?

Health Topics have a similar big A to Z list (6) and when we click Depression you get the following:

Depression is a common mental disorder, characterized by sadness, loss of interest or pleasure, feelings of guilt or low self-worth, disturbed sleep or appetite, feelings of tiredness and poor concentration.

Depression can be long-lasting or recurrent, substantially impairing an individual’s ability to function at work or school or cope with daily life. At its most severe they may need medication and professional talking treatments.

Depression is a disorder that can be reliably diagnosed and treated by non-specialists as part of primary health care. Specialist care is needed for a small proportion of individuals with complicated depression or those who do not respond to first-line treatments. (7)

This leads to the Depression fact sheet
http://www.who.int/mediacentre/factsheets/fs369/en/

Depression is a major contributor to the overall global burden of disease.

People who are depressed are often not correctly diagnosed.
Too often people are misdiagnosed and prescribed anti-depressants.

Many people with depression also suffer from anxiety symptoms.
Feelings of guilt and low self-worth can be signs of depression.

Depression results from a complex interaction of social, psychological and biological factors.

Adverse life events like unemployment, bereavement and psychological trauma can develop depression and this can lead to more stress and dysfunction. This can worsen the affected person’s life situation and depression itself.

There are interrelationships between depression and physical health – example cardiovascular disease can lead to depression and vice versa.

We then have all their publications, journals, reports and data.

What does the Universal Health Coverage Data Portal mean to us on the street? (8)

Dear World,

Can we be absolutely honest – WHO actually sits down and reads all this stuff?

More to the point WHO writes this?

WHY is all this complicated stuff needed?

Does it make simple sense to us – the general public?

Let’s move on to some statistics spelling out how serious depression is in our world.

GLOBAL

2015 (9)

Depression disorders ranked as single largest contributor to non-fatal health loss

322 million people have depression
4.4% of our world population

Depression occurs in children and adolescents under age 15

Most prevalent in African and American regions

Prevalence highest in women aged 60 – 64

20% of people with major depressive disorder develop psychotic symptoms (10)

2016

Number of people with depression and anxiety is increasing

416,000,000 in 1990

615,000,000 in 2013

3% of total government health spending worldwide is for mental health (11)

Total Cases of Depressive Disorder (9)

2015

ALGERIA

1,683,914 cases
4.5% population

SOUTH AFRICA

2,402,230 cases
4.6% population

USA

17,491,047 cases
5.9% population

CANADA

1,566,903 cases
4.7% population

BRAZIL

11,548,577 cases
5.8% population

UNITED ARAB EMIRATES

444,016 cases
5.1% population

IRAN

3,637,308 cases
4.9% population

FINLAND

293,921 cases
5.6% population

PORTUGAL

578,234 cases
5.7% population

GREECE

593,136 cases
5.7% population

BANGLADESH

6,391,760 cases
4.1% population

INDIA

56,675,969 cases
4.5% population

AUSTRALIA

1,318,599 cases
5.9% population

Are these the real figures or are there many more under the radar?
We all know the stigma around this depression stuff so let’s get honest here, is everyone going to jump up and tell the researchers they are depressed?

Back to WHO, who carried out a study which calculated treatment costs and health outcomes in 36 countries for 15 years from 2016 to 2030.
Low levels of recognition and access to care for depression and anxiety, result in a global economic loss of a trillion US dollars every year. (12)

Can we just stop and get our heads around this?

We are in serious trouble as the global cost of depression is going to rise to $1,000,000,000,000. That means a million million.

Does this big fat number rattle us, bother us, disturb us or have no effect?
Are we feeling depressed after reading all this and thinking there is no way out?
Are we thinking – where is all this mental illness stuff going to end up?

So who loses with this economic loss?
Households lose financially when people cannot work because they have depression.
Employers suffer as employees become less productive or unable to work.
Governments end up paying higher health and welfare costs.

Did we know that depression increases the risk of substance use disorders?
Did we know that depression increases the risk of diseases like Diabetes and Heart Disease?
Did we know that people with these conditions have a higher risk of depression?
Did we know that depression is also an important risk factor of suicide? (12)

USA

2012

16 million adults have had at least 1 depressive episode. (10)

1 in 10 Americans experience depression at some point in their lives.

1 in 10 women experience symptoms of depression in the weeks after having a baby.

20% – number of people diagnosed with depression increases by every year.

45 – 64 – age where depression most prevalent. (13)

70% – women more likely than men to experience depression.

60% – 18 – 25 year olds more likely to have depression than people over 50. (14)

11% of adolescents by age 18 have had a depressive disorder. (15)

30% of people with substance use problems have depression. (14)

$80,000,000,000 – annual cost of depression due to lost productivity and healthcare. (15)

80% have symptoms of clinical depression and are not receiving any specific treatment for it. (13)

States with higher rates of depression also show high rates of other negative health outcomes, such as obesity, heart disease, stroke and sleep disorders.

People with depression are more likely to be unemployed or recently divorced. (13)

UK

1 in 4 young men aged 16 – 24 are self-harming due to depression, anxiety and stress. (16)

1 in 5 elderly are impacted by depression. (17)

Reducing the prevalence of common mental disorders such as depression and anxiety is a major public health challenge. (Davies 2014) (18)

Both anxiety and depression often remain undiagnosed.
(Kessler et al. 2002)

In the case of depression, relapse ten years from first presentation frequently occurs.
(Thornicroft and Sartorius 1993) (18)

Debt and financial strain are certainly associated with depression and anxiety…
(Meltzer et al. 2013; Mind 2008).

Anxiety and depression has been estimated to cause one fifth of days lost from work.

45 – 64 – highest depression age. (18)

67.2% of people with common mental disorders have had depression at some point in their lives.

28.5% of women in receipt of sickness benefit had depression.

25.3% of men in receipt of sickness benefit had depression. (18)

CANADA

2011

7% of 15 – 24 year olds experienced depression.

25 days of regular activities were missed due to the symptoms of depression. (19)

2012

15 – 24 year olds had a higher rate of depression than any other age group.

11% of 15 – 24 year olds meet the criteria for depression in their lifetime. (20)

50% of 15 – 24 year olds with lifetime depression, had suicidal thoughts at some point.

28% young people with lifetime depression looked on the internet for mental health support. (19)

$32,300,000,000 – annual cost to economy due to lost productivity because of workers’ depression. (21)

The accommodation, food services and retail trade sectors top the list, with the highest prevalence of depression…Sectors where the labour market is more precarious, job permanency is less and there’s more turnover.
Louis Thériault – Vice-President Public Policy, Conference Board of Canada (21)

AUSTRALIA

2012 (22)

20% of adults are affected by significant levels of depression either directly or indirectly.

$12,600,000,000 – annual cost to Australian economy because of depression.
6,000,000 – working days of lost productivity due to depression.

NEXT –

Types of Depression

Major (Clinical) Depression

Major Depression, also called ‘Clinical Depression’, ‘Unipolar Depression’ or ‘Major Depressive Disorder’ is the term given to define the experience of persistent sadness.

Atypical Depression

People with Atypical Depression respond to positive and negative external events; depending on the situation, they may be either deeply depressed or hopeful. When alone, they are likely to be depressed, whereas around others their mood will lift considerably. It is common for this type of depression to occur after an interpersonal rejection. Those suffering with this type of depression are likely to oversleep, in which they feel ‘paralysed’ or find it difficult to get out of bed due to extreme tiredness. Overeating is also likely. (23)

Bi-Polar Disorder also known as manic-depressive illness is a form of psychosis where the person experiences moments of extreme highs and extreme lows. It is a mental disorder that is characterised by serious mood swings where the highs, called ‘mania’ alternate with the lows, also known as depression.

The severe mood disorder is often described as ‘episodes’ and these cycles can last for days, weeks or months. There can be periods of normal mood and behaviour in between the restless highs and listless lows.

The periods of mania and depression vary in people and the common symptoms that may be experienced are: energetic; extremely excited; wildly elated; easily distracted; full of self-confidence; little need of sleep; talk continually and makes grandiose plans, with little attention to their practicality. These are to describe the manic state.

In the depression state the behaviour is essentially the opposite. Their mental and physical activity is much slower and self-esteem is at a low ebb. They feel rejected and discouraged and may attempt suicide.

The elation and frantic activity of the manic state appear to be a last-ditch attempt to defend against the underlying feelings of inadequacy and worthlessness that precipitate depression.

There are a variety of treatment options that may be suitable for a person suffering from Bi-Polar Disorder and taking the appropriate medication to stabilise the mood or taking anti-psychotic drugs are key in treatment for this disorder and to keep symptoms under control.

Lithium carbonate is the medication most commonly used to treat Bi-Polar Disorder.
It is a long-term method of treatment for episodes of mania and depression.

Psychoanalytical theories assume that people prone to depression have learned to repress hostile feelings for fear of alienating those on whom they depend for support. When things go wrong they turn their anger inwards and blame themselves.

The theory focus is loss, over dependence on external approval and anger turned inwards.

To summarise, the psychoanalytical theory of depression has a central contention that what is at the heart of depression is the notion of loss and the related suggestion that situations, which involve loss, serve to precipitate depression in predisposed individuals. (24)

Women with Depression

Women are twice as likely to suffer with depression.
Fluctuation in hormone levels are associated with symptoms of depression. (24)

10-15% women develop postpartum (post-natal) depression (10)

During pregnancy, women are adjusting their bodies to allow for change and after childbirth depression is common due to the physical and hormonal changes. How the woman has been living up to conception has an effect on how she will cope with the new changes. This can lead to depression, if she was suffering from anxiety or stress before pregnancy and with the added responsibility of a new baby, it is clear this may lead to what is known as ‘post-natal depression’.

Some women feel like they should not be a mother and after looking forward to having a baby, during the months of pregnancy, they can have a change of heart and feel depressed after their child is born.
According to the Royal College of Psychiatrists, post-natal depression symptoms can occur during pregnancy and the lack of family support is a factor that can lead to depression. (25)

 The three distinct conditions covered by post-natal depression are:

  • ‘baby-blues’
  • post-natal depression
  • puerperal psychosis

Puerperal Psychosis should be considered as an extreme condition, that is manic-depressive in type, which occurs within one month of delivery. It is a serious psychiatric illness that requires specialist medical attention. (24)

Post-natal depression is symptomized by the following:

Sleeping and eating difficulties
Marked fatigue
Inability to cope
Loss of confidence and self-esteem
Periodic feelings of despair

A miscarriage can also affect a woman as this loss can be like any other bereavement and also the hormonal changes occurring at this time can bring about depression.

The menopause is a particularly vulnerable time for women because they are experiencing hormonal changes and it takes time for the body to adjust to the declining levels of oestrogen and progesterone. The end of menstruation means the woman is entering another cycle, another phase in her life and there are other factors which may affect our mood and bring on depression, like family loss and grief, children leaving home or medical conditions. It is known that physical illness or disability can trigger depression.

Depression is a common symptom of pre-menstrual tension in women. (24)

The following can cause pre-menstrual depression to deepen and become unrelenting:

  • problems at work
  • difficulties with children
  • separation from a spouse
  • financial difficulties
  • legal or health problems

The effect that alcohol can have on women during pre-menstrual week is that one drink is sufficient to set the head reeling. During this time period the body tissues are more ready to retain water, so they are equally ready to retain alcohol and it is absorbed more fully and more quickly, with increased effect.
During this pre-menstrual week, women may feel more depressed and seek alcohol for temporary relief and this could lead to the start of a vicious cycle. (24)

Women are also more apt to suffer from hypothyroidism, which is often associated with depression.

Studies have shown that social pressures where women are working and have the additional responsibility of raising children can be a contributory factor for depression.

Social factors such as poverty and isolation are also reasons why more women experience depression than men. (23)

Seasonal Affective Disorder (SAD) often referred to as ‘winter depression’ is said to more likely affect women. A study by The American Institute of Stress states that SAD syndrome is four times more common in women than men. It also says that career oriented single working women maybe at particular increased risk of depression. (26)

Unspecified Depression

Unspecified Depression is the term given to a form of depression that does not fall into any of the other depression categories. (23)

Elderly and Depression

Depression in elderly people often becomes more common in the decade following retirement, due to the dramatic changes that occur.

Adapting to a new routine in life and moving to a care home can be difficult to adjust to.

Also, loss of a partner or friends and loss of mobility and other health problems can contribute to depression. (23)

Children and Depression

The principal factors, which could contribute towards a child developing depression, are neglect, trauma, loss of a parent or a family history of depression.

Children who have been neglected are more likely to experience depression and the NSPCC states that “children who have been neglected may experience short-term and long-term effects that last throughout their life”. (27)

Depression can be a symptom for a child who has been ignored or left alone in the home, or if they are denied their basic needs, which are essential whilst they are in the care of adults.

A child may feel neglected if they are not met by their parents or a primary carer for who they truly are and this may cause them to shut down or check out and isolate from others socially, which will eventually lead to depression. Not engaging with others means they are no longer open or sharing their feelings and this closing down of their heart can most certainly lead to depression. If they cannot feel a bond with those they regard as their role models like parents, older siblings or teachers, then this is also a factor that can lead to depression.  The attachment theory is used by psychologists to describe the lack of bond and poor parental relationship. (27)

If a child has little interaction and not a strong relationship with a parent or guardian, then it can change how their brain develops emotionally. This can lead to an increased risk of depression.

Stress is a risk factor in depression, so if a child is experiencing sexual or physical abuse, neglect, parental loss or bullying at school this will inevitably be a contributing factor towards the child developing depression.

Any parental loss felt by a child would increase the risk of a child developing depression and it is possible that it may go un-noticed and not addressed until later on in life. This can also apply if the child is ‘attached’ to a pet and the animal dies. Parental loss can have a profound effect on a child as it brings in the issue of Trust. A child maybe needy and untrusting in general and then to lose a parent, who they completely trusted, would be a contributing factor towards them developing depression. It would also be even more so, if they were being raised by a single parent and then suffered a loss.

A family history of depression means the child is growing up in an environment where there is already the behaviour and symptoms of other family members who are suffering from depression. If a parent is suffering from depression and the child is exposed to this way of living, then they may see this as ‘normal’. Symptoms such as lack of energy, little or no interest in social activities, not engaging in life, lacking motivation, low self-esteem, feelings of helplessness and difficulty making decisions, could all be seen as ‘normal’ to the child yet all of them are psychological, physical and social symptoms of depression. (23)

Eating Disorders and Depression

There is evidence suggesting that bulimia can result in depression. With an episode of eating, the sufferer can feel self-loathing, which could lead to feelings of low self-worth, this adding to the depression. The endocrine system is affected and the hormonal imbalance could lead to the menstrual cycle becoming disrupted in women.

Women who have an eating disorder and are unable to truly express themselves, can also be a factor for depression.

People with eating disorders feel they are not good enough. They become obsessed with perfectionism and that focus of being perfect is on what they eat. But underlying it is depression. Often these patients have suffered a lot of emotional trauma.
Ira Sacker MD – Specialist Eating Disorders, New York University (28)

Depression is one of the major health problems in the world today. It is the most common of all psychiatric disorders. (24)

66% of people who suffer from depression do not seek treatment or receive the right treatment from health professionals because:

  • Symptoms are not recognised as depression
  • Depressed people are regarded as weak or lazy
  • Social stigma causes people to avoid treatment
  • Symptoms so disabling, unable to seek help
  • Individual symptoms are treated instead of the underlying cause
  • Many symptoms are misdiagnosed as physical problems (23)

The misconceptions relating to depression are that –

  • Depression is seen as a mysterious condition
  • Depression is mild and a passing mood
  • Depression is a personal weakness
  • Depression is not a life-threatening disorder like cancer
  • Depression is “untreatable”
  • Depression sufferer needs to buck up
  • Depression sufferer needs to solider on (24)

Depression is commonly associated with the following three serious illnesses:

  • Dementia
  • Stroke
  • Parkinson’s disease

A person might be considered a ‘somatiser’ if they lay particular emphasis on the physical symptoms which commonly occur in depression and play down or even deny that there are any psychological symptoms. Many fail to recognise a causal link between physical symptoms and emotional distress and blame the emotional distress entirely on the physical symptoms.

The psychological symptoms that help to identify a person who is psychiatrically ill from those with simple physical illness are:

  • Insomnia
  • Fatigue
  • Morbid self-opinion
  • Impairment of concentration
  • Hopelessness and/or recurrent suicidal thoughts
  • Loss of interest, including motivation, drive and libido

Even seriously depressed people may not complain of depression but rather a lack of energy or drive. They may seek the answer in a series of physical check-ups concentrating on the following – blood pressure, cholesterol, weight, diet, exercise, smoking and alcohol. (24)

The following is what is often said of depressed people:

  • They do not want anything to be done.
  • They do not believe others who try and reassure them that they will get better.
  • They insist that the bleak vision they have of their own lives in particular and of life in general is true.
  • They are extremely resistant to suggestions that all is not lost, that recovery can be achieved, that they will feel better, that they have felt better. (24)

During the milder forms of depression people are able to:

  • sustain personal relationships and friendships
  • carry on working
  • maintain some level of enjoyment of life

The states associated with depression are:

  • Anxiety
  • Panic attacks
  • Agoraphobic attacks

They can be relieved when depression is treated. (24)

Depression is a mood disorder or affect.

Depression affects how a person thinks, feels and behaves.
Depression is a constant feeling of no hope, sadness and a loss of interest in life.

Depression can exist on its own or is often just one symptom of a more involved disorder.
Depression affects how a person engages in everyday life.

Negative thinking means the sufferer can no longer commit to life. The sufferer feels exhausted and lacks the energy to initiate social activity.

Depression is when it is out of proportion to the event that has occurred and continues past the point at which most people begin to recover. A depressed person can become trapped in a cycle of social withdrawal, which leads to a lack of positive reinforcement, which then perpetuates the depression.

Symptoms can be complex and vary widely between people. It is an illness that can go undetected as the sufferer does not always think they are depressed, even if the common symptoms like anxiety, sadness, low energy, changes in sleep and eating habits are prevalent.

Common physical symptoms of depression:

Headache
Backache
Chest pain
Indigestion
Weight gain
Weight loss
Dizziness
Palpitations
Disturbed sexual function
Diffuse pains and aches

Main known causes of depression:

Stressfull life event
Bereavement
Job loss
Divorce
Illness
Money worries
Alcohol and Drugs
Giving up on life
Sleep issues
Loss of libido
After childbirth
PMT – hormonal imbalance
Loneliness
After retirement in later years

Depression can last for a few months.
It is usual to recover from depression but it is also common for depression to return.
Episodes can last several months or even longer in some instances. (29)

Symptoms of Depression:

Feeling Exhausted
Persistent sadness of low mood
Not being able to enjoy things
Finding it harder to make decisions
Not coping with things that used to be easy
Feeling restless and agitated
Loss of appetite and weight (29)

Doctors grade depression as mild, moderate and severe to help them decide which treatment.

We may not realise how depressed we are because it has come on gradually.
We may struggle on and cope by keeping busy, which can make us more exhausted.
Physical pains like constant headaches or sleeplessness then start.
It is these symptoms that can sometimes be the first sign of depression. (29)

The affective disorders are classified as psychoses.
These disorders are disturbances of ‘affect’ or mood and are not therefore classified under neuroses.

Circular manic-depression psychosis is a mood disorder that causes radical emotional changes and mood swings and the person alternates between manic and depressive states. Often there is a period of normal behaviour in between these episodes of restless highs and listless lows. (24)

Behaviours that might be reinforced by relatives and friends are:

  • crying
  • complaining
  • self-criticism
  • talking of suicide

Psychoanalytic theories interpret depression as a reaction to loss.

The given events involving loss that might contribute to depression are:

  • Loss of a loved one
  • Unemployment
  • Loss of health
  • Loss of financial independence
  • Loss of moral support provided by friends (24)

Events not involving loss that might contribute to depression are:

  • Marriage
  • Going on vacation
  • Winning the lottery

Psychoanalytic theories suggest that the depressed person’s feelings of worthlessness and low self-esteem stem from a childlike need for parental approval. If a small child depends on approval and affection from their parents, then as an adult, the person is prone to depression as their self-esteem depends primarily on external sources.
When such support fails, the person may be thrown into a state of depression. (24)

Treatment

The effective treatments for depression are:

  • Physical – drugs and ECT
  • Psychological – counselling and psychotherapy
  • Social – facilitating personal and occupational development

The range of treatment options that may be available to someone suffering from depression are a combination of medicines, talking therapies and self-help.

Medication

Tranquillisers are used as a treatment option for mild depression through relief of associated symptoms of anxiety.

Tricyclic anti-depressants are drugs used in the initial physical treatment for depression for those with physical symptoms like loss of appetite or sleep disturbance.

MAOI’S – monoamine oxidase inhibitors are a group of drugs used to treat depression, which has certain features like marked anxiety or worsening of mood at a particular time of day.

Lithium has been used to treat resistant depression and used in combination with tricyclic anti-depressants.

ECT – electro convulsive therapy is a treatment option used for someone suffering with severe depression or those intolerant of antidepressants. It can also be used to treat those resistant to drug therapy.

Research has found that people living close to green spaces and trees are less likely to be dependent on anti-depressant medication. (30)

So here we have a news story saying there is a correlation between nature and depression.

Could it be possible that nature has a pulse, a vibration that is in harmony with everything on this earth and beyond?
In other words, it lives in cycles and rhythms that are aligned to natural laws of the universe.

Could it be possible that this pulse is strong and steady and if we are surrounded by this, it affects our particles at a cellular level?

Could it be possible what Mina Bissell was saying about how our environment affects our cells to go crazy or not, applies to this?
In other words, nature is our environment and it will have an effect on our cells?

Could it be possible that we cannot all live with green spaces and trees, but we can be open to the fact that nature has an effect on us?

Could it be possible that mother nature is not budging and so we end up aligning and our rhythms change internally and this is what makes us “less likely” to be dependent on anti-depressant medication?

The following are signs of depression that we can all pick up on:

  • Feeling Exhausted
  • Low energy and vitality levels
  • Withdrawal from Life (31)
  • Withdrawn and feeling “out of sorts”
  • Change in mood
  • Feelings of helplessness or hopelessness
  • Sudden change in general ability to work
  • Losing interest in daily activities
  • Not enjoying what in the past we found stimulating
  • Lack of interest in life
  • No motivation
  • Not engaging in conversations
  • Irritability or not our normal self
  • Out of character behaviour
  • Appetite or weight changes
  • Drinking excess alcohol
  • Not able to relax and unwind
  • Sleep difficulty
  • Anxiety levels increasing

… the initial response to a stressful situation is anxiety – if the individual believes that the situation cannot be altered or controlled, anxiety is replaced by depression.
Hiroto, D.S. & Seligman, M.E.P. (1975) Journal of Personality and Social Psychology (24)

Insomnia, the most common expression of mental disease is like a Cinderella disorder – seldom receiving proper attention, despite the fact that it is the most treatable precursor to depression.
Colin Espie – Professor of Sleep Medicine, Oxford University. (32)

So here we have a bigwig kingpin on Sleep Medicine saying our inability to sleep is causing mental illness and if we address this first, then we can treat depression. He is spelling out to us that we need to give sleep proper attention and that means make it a priority.

Common sense tells us that our human body has a sleep wake natural cycle and we pay attention to it as babies and children. Somewhere along the line, we grow up, make our own choices, lose the plot and think waking is more important. With all our mod cons today and the plethora of distractions available 24/7, our natural sleep cycle is disturbed. Our World Sleep Day blog covers the detail, but for now we need to say that it would be wise to develop a sleep rhythm and take note that there is a science to going to bed early, which can truly support our body to do the job it needs to during sleep time.

Could it be possible that if we started to take Responsibility for our basic choices, like what time we go to bed, we could deal with our own issues like insomnia and depression?

Could it be possible that if we committed and consistently made the effort to take care of our body by going to bed early, things would be different the next day?

Could it be possible that if we got our sleep stuff sorted, we may not need the drugs to make us sleep or de-press our depression symptoms?

Could it be possible that our mind would have more clarity if we applied the Science of Early Bedtime as a lifestyle choice?

Could it be possible that with adequate quality sleep, we could engage more in life and deal with the depressed feelings?

Dear Dear World

That was over 5600 words and lots of heady stuff to take in.

Back to Simple.

WHY do we have so much intelligence in our world today and yet we have not got the answer for the root cause of depression?

WHY is everything so complicated and difficult to understand?

WHY are we spending money researching and researching to find more solutions to manage depression?

WHY are we not willing to look at HOW we are choosing to live that may be contributing to WHY we have depression?

WHY are people taking alcohol with anti-depressants and working?
What is going on in our lives that is making us reach for the pills and the poison? – Alcohol is a scientific proven poison.

What is our quality of work with alcohol and anti-depressants in our body?

Is it time to get real and get honest?
Is it time to look at our priorities in life?
Is it time to start asking questions?
Is it time to look at the war inside us?
Is it time to stop blaming?
Is it time to keep it simple?

Is there another way to live and look at our mental health?

What if we put our common sense hat on?

What if depression is about us withdrawing from life?
What if depression is about us not wanting to commit to life?
What if managing our depression is not the real answer?

Next blog – COMMITMENT TO LIFE.

As the author of this blog, I am no bigwig academic or professional on this subject.
However, I do have a Masters in common sense.
Having studied mental health, it would be true to say the theory is all about managing depression and not addressing the root cause.

Written by Bina Pattel
Community Mental Health and Psychiatry – Level 4 Award
Depression Management – Level 3. Grade: Distinction
Advanced Psychotherapy – Level 4. Grade: Distinction
Advanced Psychology – by examination. Grade: B
Stress Consultant – Corporate & Professional Level 3. Grade: Distinction


If you are feeling suicidal, contact your GP for support or the Suicide Helplines.

In a crisis contact your emergency services.

Suicide Helplines

UK – Samaritans available 24 hours.
Tel: 116 123 or email jo@samaritans.org

Childline – for children and young people
Tel: 0800 1111

USA – National Suicide Prevention Lifeline
Tel:  1-800-273-8255

Other Countries
Check International Association for Suicide Prevention Resources on Crisis Centers
https://www.iasp.info/resources/Crisis_Centres


References

(1) (2016, May 10). Global Depression Drug Market Poised to Surge from USD 14.51 Billion in 2014 to USD 16.80 Billion by 2020. MarketResearchStore.com. GlobeNewswire. Retrieved April 5, 2017 from
https://globenewswire.com/news-release/2016/05/10/838292/0/en/Global-Depression-Drug-Market-Poised-to-Surge-from-USD-14-51-Billion-in-2014-to-USD-16-80-Billion-by-2020-MarketResearchStore-Com.html

(2) World Health Day – 7 April 2017. World Health Organization. Retrieved April 1, 2017 from
http://www.who.int/campaigns/world-health-day/2017/en/

(3) (2017, February 23). WHO Releases New Estimates of Prevalence of Depression. World Health Organization. Retrieved April 9, 2017 from
http://www.who.int/campaigns/world-health-day/2017/top-stories/en/

(4) (2017). About WHO. Who We Are, What We Do. World Health Organization. Retrieved April 1, 2017 from
http://www.who.int/about/en/

(5) (2017). Governance. World Health Assembly. World Health Organization. Retrieved April 1, 2017 from
http://www.who.int/governance/en/

(6) (2017). Health Topics. World Health Organization. Retrieved April 1, 2017 from
http://www.who.int/topics/en/

(7) (2017). Depression. World Health Organization. Retrieved April 1, 2017 from
http://www.who.int/topics/depression/en/

(8) (2016). Universal Health Coverage Data Portal. World Health Organization. Retrieved April 2, 2017 from
http://apps.who.int/gho/cabinet/uhc.jsp

(9) Depression and Other Common Mental Disorders: Global Health Estimates. Geneva: World Health Organization: 2017. Licence: CC BY-NC-SA 3.0 IGO. (p.8, p.9, p.13, p.17-21). Retrieved April 1, 2017 from
http://apps.who.int/iris/bitstream/10665/254610/1/WHO-MSD-MER-2017.2-eng.pdf?ua=1

(10) Pietrangelo, A. (2015, January 28). Depression and Mental Health by the Numbers, Facts, Statistics and You. Healthline. Retrieved March 28, 2017 from
http://www.healthline.com/health/depression/facts-statistics-infographic

(11) (2016). Out of the Shadows: Making Mental Health a Global Development Priority. World Health Organization. Retrieved April 1, 2017 from
http://www.who.int/mental_health/advocacy/WB_event_2016/en/

(12) (2017, March 31). “Depression: Let’s Talk” Says WHO, as Depression Tops List of Causes of Ill Health. World Health Organization. Retrieved April 1, 2017 from   http://www.who.int/mediacentre/news/releases/2017/world-health-day/en/

(13) (2012). Depression Statistics. Healthline. Retrieved March 29, 2017 from
http://www.healthline.com/health/depression/statistics-infographic

(14) (n.d). Depression. National Alliance on Mental Illness (NAMI). Retrieved April 2, 2017 from
http://www.nami.org/Learn-More/Mental-Health-Conditions/Depression

(15) Holmes, L. (2015, January 21). 11 Statistics That Will Change the Way You Think About Depression. Huffington Post. Retrieved April 2, 2017 from
http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2015/01/20/depression-statistics_n_6480412.html

(16) Marsh, S. (2017, March 1). A Quarter of Young Men Self-Harm to Cope with Depression, Says Survey. The Guardian. Retrieved March 29, 2017 from
https://www.theguardian.com/society/2017/mar/01/quarter-of-young-men-self-harm-cope-depression-poll

(17) Faris, S. (2012, March 28). A Look at Depression Statistics. Healthline. Retrieved March 29, 2017 from
http://www.healthline.com/health/depression/statistics#1

(18) McManus, S., Bebbington, P., Jenkins, R., Brugha, T. (eds.) (2016) Mental Health and Wellbeing in England: Adult Psychiatric Morbidity Survey 2014. Leeds: NHS Digital. (p.39-40, p. 49, p.51, p.56)

(19) (2017, January 18). Study: Depression and Suicidal Ideation Among Canadians Aged 15 – 24. The Daily. Retrieved March 28, 2017 from
http://www.statcan.gc.ca/daily-quotidien/170118/dq170118b-eng.htm

(20) (2017, January 19). 11% Canadians Aged 15 – 24 Met Criteria for Depression: StatsCan. CBCNews. Retrieved March 31, 2017 from
http://www.cbc.ca/news/health/depression-suicidal-thoughts-1.3940621

(21) (2016, September 1). Depression, Anxiety Cost Canadian Economy Billions, Conference Board Says. CBCNews. Retrieved March 31, 2017 from
http://www.cbc.ca/news/business/canada-economy-depression-anixety-1.3744300

(22) Manicavasagar, V. (2012). A Review of Depression Diagnosis and Management. Australian Psychological Society (APS). Retrieved April 2, 2017 from
https://www.psychology.org.au/publications/inpsych/2012/february/manicavasagar/

(23) (2016). Community Mental Health & Psychiatry Level 4. UK Distance Learning & Publishing

(24) (2015). Depression Management Diploma Course. Stonebridge Associated Colleges

(25) (n.d). Postnatal Depression. Royal College of Psychiatrists. Retrieved April 2, 2017 from
http://www.rcpsych.ac.uk/healthadvice/problemsdisorders/postnataldepression.aspx

(26) Rosch, P.J. (n.d). Why Do Women Suffer More from Depression and Stress? The American Institute of Stress (AIS). Retrieved April 2, 2017 from
https://www.stress.org/why-do-women-suffer-more-from-depression-and-stress/

(27) (2017). Neglect. NSPCC. Retrieved April 2, 2017 from
https://www.nspcc.org.uk/preventing-abuse/child-abuse-and-neglect/neglect/signs-symptoms-effects-neglect/

(28) Jaret, P. (2010). Eating Disorders and Depression. WebMD. Retrieved April 2, 2017 from
http://www.webmd.com/mental-health/eating-disorders/features/eating-disorders#1

(29) (2014, March). Depression: Key Facts. Royal College of Psychiatrists. Retrieved April 2, 2017 from
http://www.rcpsych.ac.uk/healthadvice/problemsdisorders/depressionkeyfacts.aspx

(30) Neslen, A. (2017, March 21). Access to Nature Reduces Depression and Obesity, Finds European Study. The Guardian. Retrieved April 1, 2017 from
https://www.theguardian.com/society/2017/mar/21/access-nature-reduces-depression-obesity-european-report

(31) Benhayon, S., & Benhayon, N. (2015). The Living Sutras of the Hierarchy 04. The College of Universal Medicine (COUM)

(32) Siddique, H. (2016, April 1). Britons Missing an Hour’s Sleep Every Night, Says Report. The Guardian. Retrieved April 5, 2017 from
https://www.theguardian.com/lifeandstyle/2016/apr/01/uk-hours-sleep-night-report-average-royal-society-for-public-health

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Comments 22

  1. Does depression lead to exhaustion or does exhaustion lead to depression?

    From personal experience, I know that when I was exhausted I had many of the symptoms of depression. So was I depressed or just exhausted?

    I have been to doctors who have told me I was in excellent physical condition. I went because I felt tired. They prescribed an antidepressant. I did not take them because it felt like they were prescribing them because they did not know what was really going on with me. All their tests and knowledge could not see that I was just incredibly exhausted.

    With support from Simple Living Global and lots of intensive self care, my body is doing what it needs to do to heal me.
    It has taken time but that is because of the many years of ignoring the messages my body was communicating.

    I feel depression can be just our bodies way of stopping us because the way we are living is not working.

  2. My own case study:

    I spent 30 years in levels of depression (age 10-40), at best not feeling sure if I was free of it and fearing it would return or deepen into psychosis and often very much consumed by it.

    I spent well over half of those years in therapy for it, on medications for it and the entire time searching for something to make my life work…

    Simple Living Global was the end of my long term depression.

    The support offered was about getting more honest, getting to the root causes and taking accountability for my state of being.

    Too simple?
    Give it a try with someone who FULLY walks the talk; there is no support to compare.

    This was empowering and it lifted my chronic sense or belief that I was stuck, broken, worthless, and at low points hopeless, to live my life as I felt I was meant to live.

    Before Simple Living Global I often went into ‘manic mode’ (between my ‘normal’ depressed conditions). I was driven to do things out of frustration and desperation and had a ‘need’ to get into ‘fun’ projects which kept me up late. I regularly ran on empty, neglecting food, proper sleep and other practical life responsibilities like focusing on getting enough employment or a proper place to live.

    I now consistently go to bed when my body asks me to, I do not fall for being driven or feel a need to make my day ‘more’ by pushing myself. I know that my commitment to myself, my body, to work, to home and to others is about my commitment to life and that without this, commitment life just does not work; I have realized that life simply can not support me if I do not do my part.

    In place of feeling a deep distaste for this world and a desire to disengage myself from it (by not being committed and flirting with the fairy’s), feeling empty, not-enough and often being very withdrawn, I now have a sense of fulfillment, purpose and a commitment to life that is ever growing and expanding by my choices to be more of who I am in-this-world.

    Feeling a thousand times lighter I now stop, often, to appreciate the true support that assisted me to this point where I am able to continue to open and know the beauty of life.

    I have had no depression for over 5 years. This has never happened before.
    I have no worry of it returning because I know what it is and I know who I am.
    This has also never happened before.

    I have complete confidence that Bina Pattel of Simple Living Global has a triple doctorate in common sense and that it is this kind of common sense that will, eventually, bring us all back to a place of homeostasis in all areas of our health and well being.

    In other words, common sense can and will bring us back to who we are, once we choose to live it every day.

  3. This blog is a huge read on many levels. There is so much here.

    It feels like reading it has done something to my brain – somehow deconstructing assumptions and ‘received wisdom’ and replacing it with facts and truth. It has me questioning what is really happening and how many people are suffering.

    The numbers are incomprehensibly huge. So many people needing support.

    With the numbers as huge as they are, aren’t we ALL affected?
    Do we ALL know people with depression or suffer it ourselves in some form?

    1. You’re right Jenifer, so many people are needing support.

      Depression seems to be affecting every part of life, including every profession.

      Today I read an article on depression and pilots.

      The opening line of the article reads, ‘Hundreds of commercial airline pilots currently flying may be clinically depressed.’
      https://knowridge.com/2016/12/significant-number-of-airline-pilots-report-depressive-symptoms-suicidal-thoughts-survey-reveals/

      It is suspected that due to the fear of the negative impact on their career (because of the stigma associated with mental ill health) pilots may not be disclosing what they are experiencing and seeking the necessary treatment.

      “There is a veil of secrecy around mental health issues in the cockpit.”
      Joseph Allen, Assistant Professor of Exposure Assessment Science and Co Author of Harvard T.H. Chan School of Public Health study on Pilot Health and Job Content

      Difficulty concentrating is noted as one symptom experienced by some pilots, nearly every day, with men experiencing this more frequently than female pilots.

      Depression was also more likely among pilots who used higher levels of sleep aid medication and those experiencing sexual or verbal harassment.

      This is serious and is clearly showing us that our pilots are struggling. As we know statistics don’t really give us the full measure of the real situation as respondents are not always honest. Having read this blog by Simple Living Global and news articles like these, this is enough to show us that we are failing as a society

      Pilots are top earners and have a high social status. However, the question arises whether our focus on a career and being the best at all costs is actually our demise?

      Of course we do need pilots, but not at the expense of them ruining themselves.
      There has to be a balance as we are all ill affected by things as they currently are.

  4. There is so much in this blog that grabs your attention. The medical world come up with different types of depression. But could it be they are blind to the fact that Humanity has Given Up and as you say in your blog “Withdrawing from Life”.

    Is it when the going gets tough and it becomes too much that we do not want to take Responsbility for our own choices. I know this as I was one of those statistics (no longer).

    Are we just looking for a quick fix rather than get really honest and admitting what is really going on. Our doctors are so stressed out how can they support and help another if they are physically and mentally not in the right place themselves?

    Simple changes like going to bed early, not being hard on myself 24/7 and taking Real care of my body stopped my depression and of course Taking Responsbility for my choices. None of which was recommended by my doctor but was by the author of this blog.

    An Amazing and very powerful blog!

  5. Superb blog and such an interesting and informational read. Thank you for describing the different types of depression, it really helps in understanding people more. I did not know there are so many forms.

    I had depression in my teens, twenties and thirties on and off, and an eating disorder for part of it, having medication and talk therapy at times to help me with it, but really although I didn’t see myself as depressed in the later years, I now know I was and went on to develop chronic fatigue as I withdrew more and more from the world and life.

    It was when I started to look at why I was withdrawing and made a commitment to myself in how I take care of myself, setting a good sleep rhythm with early bed, a commitment to life and the world.. step by step, that I had true and lasting change occur and the state I had got into.. I lovingly got myself out of.
    Today I don’t have depression or withdrawal, I’m out in the world taking part and loving it, I cannot express enough how good it feels. I feel joy everyday.

    What you share in this blog Simple Living Global is diamond for this condition… it worked for me after many many years of being stuck in it.

  6. Daily Mail – 21 January 2017
    Research published shows patients on antidepressants are taking them for 50% longer today than in the 90’s.

    Back in the old days things got reviewed but now with the pressures on mental health services, there are less specialists dealing with this and the GP simply does not have the expertise to know when to consider a trial without an antidepressant.
    Instead patients are left on repeat prescriptions without being reviewed.
    So what the article is saying is there is a risk of people being wrongly categorised.
    In other words under or over treated by tablets.

    Is it time to stop, put our common sense hat on and join the dots.
    Taking any prescribed medication has side effects. Not sure why we call them “side” effects when in Truth they have an effect on our natural state.
    All drugs alter our natural state and we cannot get away from that immutable fact.

    Back to antidepressants which as this blog says is depressing something back inside us.
    In other words push it down.
    With common sense, can we say what exactly are we not wanting to feel or deal with that we need to push it down?
    Is it emotional stuff?
    Could there be another way?
    What are the long term ‘side’ effects of the antidepressants we are taking?
    Are we so dependent on them that like any dependency we need MORE of the same to make it work?
    Could it be possible that for some of us in time they simply do not give us the effect we want – which is to push down our depression and so we reach for the bottle?
    Could it be possible that the cocktail of antidepressants and alcohol is needed as the root cause of WHY we got depression in the first place has never been addressed?
    Could it be possible that unless we are willing to ask the WHY questions, things are not really going to heal or get better?

  7. I read a statistic from the NASUWT that almost all teachers (98%) have taught pupils with mental health issues.

    How confronting is that? Of ALL the schools in the country, pretty much ALL teachers are seeing depression and other mental health issues in our kids.

    Perhaps equally as confronting is that half of those teachers don’t know how to handle it. They have had no training.

    How will that sense of helplessness affect those teachers?

  8. There is a stigma linked to having a mental health condition and I actually wonder now whether this is why many of us do not recognise when something is wrong at an earlier stage. Also our measure of wellness is much reduced these days and so we can feel unwell but tell ourselves that we are well, because we don’t have a terminal disease.

    Reading about Depression and Eating Disorders I realise that in my teens and twenties I had both conditions. However because I could function and go to work and earn money I never really stopped to acknowledge this. All of the symptoms mentioned I lived with – self loathing, low self worth, perfectionism, being unable to express myself in addition to controlling my food intake. It was only when my period stopped for over a year in my 30’s that I was forced to acknowledge and address the underlying issues.

    Developing a connection with my body and taking care of it over living in my mind 24/7 is what I am working on. It is a day by day focus of taking small steps to shift the balance.

  9. WHY is the world and its brothers depressed.

    Imagine the real statistics because we all know when we have the symptoms of depression, some of us are not even aware of it. We just think we got to keep going or find another solution, as we simply do not understand this mind of ours and why our body seems to feel so out of it.

    I was reading a news story about a famous florist who has been banned from driving and now has a chauffeur. The story talked about how they were taking anti-depressants with alcohol daily. This cocktail is a recipe for serious trouble because most of us have no clue about the brain chemistry or the super finite detail of how the body works. All we want is to get through the day, business as usual and not feel the effects of what is really going on in our life.

    I reckon most people by the time they hit their 40’s and 50’s have this disease called Depression in some form or another. Most of us will never admit it but what if it has something to do with emotions, hurts and issues we have de-pressed, shoved away, pushed down in hope it will just go away. But No, it keeps coming up and we keep finding ways to numb it out and try and ignore it and all the time it just drains us of our life force so we feel like a black cloud is passing and we are in it and cannot get out of it.

    I am talking from lived experience and I know that once I made the Commitment to Life and simply got on with it things shifted and I have never looked back. It just makes sense and it works.
    http://simplelivingglobal.com/world-health-day-depression/

  10. Is it time to do something different when we have created a world, that does not support a child to be themselves. So they feel like they need to give up on themselves and eventually have to take medication to cope with the world.

    Simple Living Global’s Back to Basics program has supported me to get back to myself, so I can live in a way that shows children that it is ok to be themselves, even in a world that does not support them to be themselves.

    All we need to do is be ourselves to change the world.

    1. Ken Elmer says “All we need to do is be ourselves to change the world”…

      …and after watching Ken transform his mental and physical health over the past few years by doing the work needed to ‘be himself’ and in doing so become an inspiration to all who know him, I know this is true.

      I have reversed my chronic lifelong depression with support from Simple Living Global to get back to simply living my life more and more from who I have always known I am deep within.

  11. The evidence shows that the things that matter most for our happiness and for our misery are our social relationships and our mental and physical health…
    In the past, the state has successfully taken on poverty, unemployment, education and physical health. But equally important now are domestic violence, alcoholism, depression and anxiety conditions, alienated youth, exam-mania and much else. These should become centre stage. (3)
    People have become no happier in the last 50 years, despite average incomes more than doubling.
    Tackling depression and anxiety would be four times as effective as tackling poverty… (4)
    Lord Richard Layard, Researcher on Origins of Happiness: Evidence and Policy Implications, London School of Economics and Political Science (LSE)

    The above is an extract from our Happiness blog –
    http://simplelivingglobal.com/international-day-of-happiness/

    So what is this Lord spelling out to us?
    Is he talking about good old fashion CONNECTION which is about relationships and is this what affects our mental and physical health?

    We all have a clue that when we are withdrawn for whatever reason and we shut out the world we seem to go deeper in isolation and things get more difficult. We totally stop having reflections from the outer world and we are left with our mind going over things or we check out to avoid feeling what we are feeling.
    We lose that reality check and Commitment to Life http://simplelivingglobal.com/commitment-to-life-part-1/ in any area feels like a task that is simply too much.
    What if connecting with people is the very thing we need as we get to feel the pulse of humanity?
    In other words we are all interconnected and this is what brings us back?
    What if we started this connection business with everything and not just people?
    In other words we can have a relationship with things in our home, like the kitchen sink.

    What if everything is Everything and so it ALL matters.

    What if this is another way of ‘tackling depression..’ and it proves to be effective?
    Nothing seems to be working and after studying much about Depression, I am absolutely certain the answers are not in the theories that we keep coming up with but within the body of every human being.

  12. Evening Standard the free London newspaper on 14 April 2016 talks about the Founder and President of ChildLine – Esther Rantzen saying ‘bring back family dinners to fight childhood depression’.

    Parents are working longer hours and the kids are not met at the end of school time and are just left to do what they want. No coincidence we have a rise in social media and this then adds to the lack of real family connection.

    “Suicidal depression is now one of the top reasons children phone ChildLine”.

    In 1986 when the helpline was launched, sexual abuse was the most common reason and in the 90’s it was bullying.

    Today we have increasing number of children calling about eating disorders, self harm, cyber bullying and sexting.

    Just this tells us we have a serious problem with our future generations.
    How are we going to put a stop to this and is there a simple answer?
    Are we simply too busy to even get our head around the enormity of what this is saying?
    What sort of world have we got if our children have suicidal depression?
    What on earth is going on that children are having eating disorders?
    WHY would our kids want to self harm and what is truly going on inside their minds?
    WHY are we not addressing cyber bullying which we all know is increasing by the day?
    How many of us actually know about sexting and the pressures that go with this?

    Is it time we listened to the good old fashion advice from an elder in our community like Esther Rantzen and bring Back to Basics into family life – like dinner together where communication is at the top of the agenda?

    As an elder in my community, I certainly pass on wisdom to the younger generations when the opportunity arises. Why hold back when we know something is wrong and opening our mouth may just get someone to stop in their tracks and consider what has been presented. Saying nothing guarantees no change. Saying something can make a difference if it shared without trying to fix them, preach, teach or dictate anything.

  13. What I love about this website is that every time we read a post it reveals how EVERYTHING absolutely EVERYTHING is interlinked. There are no separate entities here. Take this article on Depression and then the one on the Earth http://simplelivingglobal.com/earth-day/, could these 2 articles together give us the answer to Depression and provide a way to truly heal?

    Simple Living Global is really an extra-ordinary website and is one that needs to be studied as it provides the answers to many, many, many of our world problems.
    From Human Trafficking http://simplelivingglobal.com/world-day-against-trafficking-in-persons/, to Diabetes http://simplelivingglobal.com/world-diabetes-day/ and Expression http://simplelivingglobal.com/expression-is-everything/- including Be Gentle http://simplelivingglobal.com/be-gentle/ – no area of life is left out.

    Thank you Simple Living Global for your dedication to humanity, for opening our eyes and supporting us to know that there is another way to live. http://simplelivingglobal.com/is-there-another-way/

  14. Another outstanding blog Simple Living Global.

    It was interesting to read that, regardless of what country the statistics were from, and regardless of the total number of cases from every country, the percentage of people that suffered from depressive disorders were all between 4-6% of the population.

    So whether the country had 444,016 (5.1%) cases, as in the case of United Arab Emirates or 56,675,969 (4.5%) cases, as in the case of India, the percentage of people diagnosed were very similar.

    This shows that depressive disorders are not confined to specific demographics but it is indicative of how the whole world is living.

    There are only a few countries listed in this blog but there is no reason to assume that other countries don’t have similar figures and as the author of this blog says, the actual figures may well be a lot higher due to people not admitting they have depression because of the stigma attached to this illness.

    It’s obvious from reading this blog that depression comes in many different forms and may not be known, even to the person who has it, but what is known is that, according to a Professor of Sleep Medicine at Oxford University, “a lack of sleep is the most common expression of mental disease despite the fact that it is the most treatable precursor to depression.”

    This statement in itself is huge just because of the simplicity of it…adequate sleep can help with depressive disorders.

    Changing our sleeping habits is a lifestyle change that we are all able to achieve quite easily if we choose to.

  15. The Guardian – 18 June 2017
    https://www.theguardian.com/society/2017/jun/18/number-of-under-18s-on-antidepressants-in-england-rises-by-12

    Tens of thousands of young people in England, including children as young as 6 are being prescribed antidepressants by their doctors – figures released by NHS England.

    A clear confirmation that our kids are suffering with mental health problems.

    We are failing to provide a choice of age-appropriate psychological treatments at the point of the need.
    Dr Antonis Kousoulis – Clinician and Assistant Director, Mental Health Foundation.

    How serious is this and WHY are we all so complacent and not up in arms demanding more by talking about this at every dinner table and asking the media to tell us what on earth is going on?

    Would it be true to say that we need more public awareness?

    Would it be true to say that research cannot keep up with the rise in ill mental health with our young children?

    Would it be true to say that something is clearly missing in our kids and this is the start of depression?

    Would it be true to say that this blog talks about connection and this is needed?

    Would it be true to say that robust clinical trials are never going to get us sorted as they are looking at a solution to the problem and not asking WHY we got this problem in the first place?

    Would it be true to say that screen time and all this social media stuff might have a hand in why our children are taking anti-depressants?

    Would it be true to say we just all need to start being very honest about how we are choosing to live that may be contributing to depression?

    Would it be true to say that things are now out of control and relying on the next drug or treatment is never going to deal with where and how the problem started?

    Is it high time we asked IS THERE ANOTHER WAY?

  16. I no longer suffer from depression. WHY because I STOPPED blaming the world for the bad choices/mistakes I made and took Responsibility for My Life. It is so easy to blame everyone and everything when things go terribly wrong. This was a big wake up call for me and 7 years later it is as clear as a sunny day that by COMMITTING to Life depression is not even on my radar anymore. A spot on blog!

  17. I make it my business to engage with people and not just ignore them if there is an opportunity. What seems to happen more often than not is we get talking following my usual question of “how are you honestly feeling?” – that word honest brings in another dimension and then I just leave it to them if they want to expand or do what most do and say ‘great or fine ‘.

    Today it was a window cleaner and he said how fed up he was with life and in his own words he expressed how nothing is changing because he is just doing nothing and now it has got to the point where he hates his job and everything about life. With my usual style I did not hold back and asked him what is missing and what could change things and he said to learn english needs to be a priority.

    What followed was some silence and more talking and eventually he shared about his depression and he felt it was because he had simply given up and needs to commit to life in order to see and feel the changes. We parted with him saying that he does want to commit to life and that he is a trained engineer who went to university in his country but that does not count in the UK.

    Whatever unfolds from this is not my business but to know that simply by talking and having a genuine conversation people do open up and his take on depression nailed it.
    So what if this guy is anecdotal evidence for our world?
    Can we disregard and dismiss what he had to say or can we read this blog and join the dots?

  18. An article in the Daily Mail, 15th April 2017, talks about how “Poor towns hooked on pills.”

    Residents in poor seaside towns in the North and East of England are being prescribed almost twice as many anti-depressants as the rest of the country.

    According to the NHS data across the 326 districts in England – Blackpool, Sunderland and East Lindsey in Skegness, had the highest prescription rates.

    Experts said coastal towns faced specific hardships that gave rise to mental health issues. The data found that in Blackpool 2.11 anti-depressant prescriptions were issued per person last year.

    The average across the country was 1.16. Sunderland and East Lindsey had a rate of 1.99.

    A consultant clinical psychologist said: ‘All of these places tend to be, to a certain extent, ghost towns, because of the destruction of local economies by the cheapening of foreign travel.

    The number of anti-depressants prescribed in England has risen seven fold in the last 25 years.

    In 1991, 9 million anti-depressants were issued.
    In 2012, 47 million were issued.
    In 2016, 64 million were issued.

    As this blog says:
    What if depression was about us withdrawing from life?
    What if depression was about us not wanting to commit to life?

    Although it is understandable that these coastal towns have a high rate of anti-depressant prescriptions issued, is it possible that, wherever we live, whatever we do, whatever our circumstances, we still have a choice to be depressed or not?

  19. Daily Mail – 28 October 2017

    Dr Max is saying that Work can be the best thing for depression.
    However, this news story is about employers who are not very supportive when it comes to their employees needing time out to attend appointments for therapy.

    We all know mental health issues are not the same as a physical illness and requires time and commitment over a period of months.

    When employers refuse to support, the employee is left with long-term sick leave or they resign and apply for benefits.

    Dr. Max says this is ridiculous as the best thing for the majority of those with mental illness is work, as it provides structure, purpose and routine.

    If we look at it from a practical viewpoint, it would make sense to keep an experienced staff member than to recruit a new person who would require training.

    A recent report backed by the Prime Minister, found 300,000 people a year lose their jobs due to mental ill health, at a cost through lost productivity – of around £99 billion.

    Is this vast amount of money worth stopping and considering for one moment?

    How have we got to this point and is anyone really winning here?

    Would it be wise for employers to get real well being programs for staff so that they are adequately equipped in dealing with everyday issues?

    The Simple Living Global – Back to Basics Program was designed to support all of us to get on track with the everyday basic stuff. Every organisation in this world would benefit from something that is simple, cost effective and works.

    The reason it works is because those presenting are actually living what is being said.

    There is no hot talk – it literally is talking the talk and walking the walk.
    That way those at the receiving end feel the difference. It is not coming from theory or knowledge, but a lived body who is sharing what is possible and this is what inspires others to do the same.

    One day in the future, this website will be studied and the scholars will realise that it was said in the early 21st century that there is another way to live and depression did not have to exist.

  20. It was not a coincidence I clicked on this blog today. It made me really appreciate the author of this blog, who has supported and helped me to understand there is another way to live.
    For many decades I was caught up in my misery. When the reality was, there was no need. All I had to do was be myself.

    This website is much needed. I know I have learned so much about myself, just by taking 5 minutes of my time to read and contribute to the blogs daily.

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