World Mental Health Day is celebrated on 10th October every year. Theme of this year is” Depression: A Global Crisis”. This day raises public awareness about mental health issues. It promotes discussions, mental disorders, and investments in promotion, prevention and treatment. According to WHO, depression affects more than 350 million people of all ages in all communities. Even if there are many known effective treatments for depression, the major problem is access to these treatments. In some countries less than 10% people receive such treatments.
What is depression exactly?
This is a condition characterized by some symptoms. There are typical symptoms which can be observed for two week for an adult and one week for a child. If these symptoms are seen continuously for said period, then the condition is labeled as “Depression”.
- Depressed mood throughout the day. It is mainly seen during morning hours.
- Low energy levels during the day.
- Not able to concentrate in the task given.
- Feeling guilty.
- Disturbed or no sleep during night (even throughout the day).
- Thoughts of suicide.
- Marked changes in weight. It can be weight loss or weight gain.
Depression is a disorder which can be treated and prevented. One needs to identify the symptoms and seek medical help to take required steps. This disorder is a major contributing cause of global disease burden; suggests WHO.
Following steps can be included in daily life to prevent depression or relapsed depression;
- Handle your stress: busy working schedule, demanding life, increasing expenses etc are contributors for stress. Stress is the major contributor for depression. Go with a slow pace on busy schedule. Give some time for yourself to distress. Relax and rest enough to tackle stress.
- Regular exercise: various studies and finding suggest exercise is best medicine for stress and thus depression. It helps in maintaining hormonal balance. Experts suggest it also helps in reducing risk for life style diseases.
- Take it easy: you need to be perfectionist. You can make some mistakes and learn to take it the way it is. This approach really works in reducing stress. Do not blame yourself for everything. Keeping let go attitude in some situations is advisable.
- Go for Balanced diet: when it comes to health, diet plays an important role. Avoid junk food and include healthy food options in your daily diet. Include fish, legumes, nuts, fresh fruits, vegetables, whole grain in daily diet.
- Avoid alcohol and smoking: these two things may affect your health badly. Alcohol, caffeine coming from coffee alters sleep inducing hormones in the body. There is a reaction between anti depressant drugs and alcohol. You may seek information on mental disorders on Public forum.