International Depression Day
What is this event?
Every year, March 24 is celebrated worldwide as International Depression Day. The founders of this holiday aimed to draw the attention of the world community to the problems of such a mental illness as depression.
On this day, volunteers conduct educational activities to emphasize the main problems faced by people suffering from depression and ways to solve them.
How did the idea of celebrating International Depression Day come about?
What is depression?
Depression is a psychological disorder characterized by a prolonged (more than 2 weeks) depressed state, loss of interest in everyday activities and activities that were previously performed with pleasure. No one is immune to this disease, but men suffer from it more often than women.
Many people are interested in the answer to the question: why does depression occur? However, it is impossible to determine one specific cause of this disease. After all, it is the result of complex interweaving of physical, psychological and social factors.
Very often a prerequisite for development depression critical events in life may occur, such as the loss of a loved one, a stressful situation, a traumatized psyche. Depression, in turn, leads to a deterioration of stress resistance, normal functioning and further worsens the life situation, which further aggravates the patient’s depressive state. In this way, a person falls into a closed circle, from which it is impossible to get out on his own.
Symptoms of depression include depressed feelings, lack of happiness and joy, decreased physical abilities, decreased energy, feelings of anxiety, sleep disturbances, impaired concentration, problems with self-esteem, feelings of despair, and suicidal thoughts. Depression has different degrees of development: mild, moderate and severe. It is very important to detect a depressive state in the initial stages, because then it is much easier to recover.
How to overcome depression?
Depression will never go away on its own if you don’t deal with it and treat this disease. Along with psychotherapy sessions and drug treatment, which is prescribed by a relevant medical specialist, it is necessary to actively engage in self-care. A few valuable tips will help you deal with the problem sooner.
- Switching attention to other objects. During depression a person is visited by unpleasant intrusive thoughts. In order not to scroll through thoughts that increase the depressive state, it is necessary to start thinking about some specific subject. Evaluate its texture, determine its color, think about what it might resemble. The object of switching attention can be any material object: a stone, a vase, a flower, a table, etc. Once you begin to focus your attention on what you are contemplating, the oppressive thoughts will recede.
- Physical activity. During sports or work that requires significant physical effort, hormones of happiness – endorphins – are released in the body. It is their lack that can lead to depression.
- Art therapy sessions. Creativity helps to cope with depressed state. At the same time, both the result and the process itself are important. Creative activity has a calming effect, and the result has a positive effect on self-esteem.
- Openness You can’t keep your emotions inside. Advice like “get over yourself” not only won’t help, but will make depression even worse. If there is a desire to cry, it is necessary to cry.
- Keeping a diary of happy events. By recording pleasant and joyful moments from life in a diary, a person begins to look for what brings him joy.
Rather disappointing statistical data show that depression is a global problem and not a rare disease. This further reinforces the importance of International Depression Day, which is designed to draw everyone’s attention to the fact that depression cannot be neglected, that this illness needs serious treatment.
The latest WHO estimates indicate that about 350,000,000 people on our planet suffer from depressive disorders. In 2005, this figure was about 240,000,000.
According to global estimates of the state of health of the planet’s inhabitants, the incidence rate of depressive states is on average 5% of the total population of our planet.
Due to the fact that the problem is not given the necessary attention, patients with mental disorders do not feel the necessary support, they are afraid of rejection by society, therefore they do not turn to specialists for medical assistance. As a result, a person not only does not return to normal life, but worsens his situation even more.
- According to statistics, more men suffer from depression than women. Thus, among the total number of patients, about 70% are men and 30% are women.
Statistical data in Ukraine
In our country, depression is the most common disorder among people suffering from mental illnesses. Residents of Ukraine suffer from depression 30% more often than citizens of other European countries. According to the Ministry of Health of Ukraine, the number of patients with this mental illness is increasing every year.
The sad statistics are influenced by both the socio-economic state of the country and other unfavorable conditions of life. According to psychiatrists, every third Ukrainian needs qualified psychiatric help. However, every 50th resident of the country applies for such help.
How to celebrate International Depression Day?
In light of the severity of the disease and disappointing statistics, especially in the territory of our country, International Depression Day becomes especially important. On this day, meetings, conferences and symposiums are held, focusing on methods of combating such a problem as depression at the global level.
As for an individual person, this day should encourage everyone with the slightest mental disorder to contact a specialist, undergo a comprehensive examination and start working on their health.
The fact that the problem is not hushed up, and the ways to solve it are popularized and spread to the masses, should help a person get rid of the shame when visiting a psychiatrist.
When will we celebrate International Depression Day?