“How are you?”, this greeting question has presumably lost its essence. In this fast moving world, amidst our hectic schedules, do we really have time to know how one is? This World Mental Health Day, let us see how grave an effect this ignorance has had on our society. Humans are a storehouse of emotions. Among this labyrinth of emotions, we sometimes find it difficult to differentiate between the two of them. Much evidently, a study based on WHO standards revealed India is the most depressed nation; while those tested under this study had thought they were just ‘sad’!!
Depression is a state of strange numbness, where one recognizes all emotions but is unperturbed by any. It is a state of chemical imbalance in the brain, but commands whole body to ache. There are different types of Depressions. The one this study had tested was Dysthmic Depression. Almost every fourth person in India suffers from this disease and what makes it even worse it that neither they, nor their friends know it.
“That’s the thing about depression: A human being can survive almost anything, as long as she sees the end in sight. But depression is so insidious, and it compounds daily, that it’s impossible to ever see the end.”, says Elizabeth Wurtzel
Talk about the reasons, and a tyrannous wave emerges out of the blue. The prime reason of Depression as cited by most psychiatrists is Latch-Key Syndrome. With the advent technology came along its devils. Technology advanced the human race but weakened the spine of the mankind. Latch-Key syndrome is the lack of attachment with anyone. Being born and brought up in nuclear families and valuing social media interactions more than the physical ones, has jeopardised our state of mental well-being. We, Indian youth, who are nourished with stories of strong morals, determination and success; easily fall prey to any minor failure or setback and tend to over think on the same. Medical reasons would include several reasons like smoking and drinking which weaken the immune system and neuro-convulsions. “Both genetic and neurochemical changes have been linked to depression, caused by the underactivity in neurotransmitters, which play an important role in the brain,” says Dr Sanjeev Kalra, consultant psychiatrist, VIMHANS.
It was just a few days back that I saw a status reading, “Alone is what I have, Alone protects me, Alone is the new sexy”. No sir! It is not protecting you, indeed swallowing you up. And it is not sexy. It can never be! Most people don’t know that they are depressed, though its signs like high and low mood swings are quite identifiable and those who know, don’t take firm steps to tackle it. They have the rotten ‘what-will-people-think’ mentality and consequently, sink deeper in the quagmire.
Curbing Depression is the need of the hour. For, its consequences can be lethal as evinced by statistics saying the number of deaths due to depression equals those due to chronic diseases like AIDS. Such a situation is not better for any individual and for the society in the larger picture. It is precisely our lifestyle and society that is to be blamed for such alarming rates of depression among the youth and therefore, it the whole society that must shoulder the responsibility to undo the harm caused and then take preventive steps for further damage.
Those depressed should never bottle things up! Talk about it. Talking your heart out does not make you weak. It shows you are stronger. Never heard that weak people can’t cry? Science claims that! Those surrounding them must make sure that they listen to them and try to rectify their problems or at least present to them an alternate (and better) view of the situation. Medically, combat depression and take courses which your psychiatrist suggests. But, according to me; grab hold of a good friend of yours (I am sure you have one), and ask for help. I say it so firmly, because I have experienced it. I don’t know if it was prolonged sadness or depression, whatever it maybe, it was my brother who helped me. Build Bonds. Life is too short to leave important words unsaid. Heal yourselves and help others heal.
Open to questions and comments in the comment box.