Myths and Facts About Depression
Depression is one of the most common mental illnesses. It affects about 6.7 percent of people who are over the age of 18. Most of us know someone who has been affected by depression. However, there are still a lot of misconceptions about it.
Myth: Depression is not a Real Illness
Fact: Many people believe that depression is caused by weakness in character. They also think that it is simply being sad. However, depression is a psychological, social and biological condition. It has to be treated as a medical condition. If you think you suffer from depression, then you will need to consult with a doctor.
Myth: Depression is Normal
Fact: Everyone experiences feelings of sadness from time to time. However, depression is a lot more serious than just being sad. When a person is depressed, the feelings of sadness are so strong that it interferes with one’s ability to function. Depression also causes other symptoms such as fatigue and loss of appetite.
Myth: There is Nothing That can be Done About Depression
Fact: There are a variety of ways that depression can be treated. In fact, it is estimated that 80 percent of people with this disorder are able to recover with the proper treatment. There are new treatments being developed every day.
Myth: Antidepressants Always Cure Depression
Fact: Antidepressants are just one of the many treatments that are available for depression. They treat depression by altering the brain chemistry. However, antidepressants alone are not enough for many people. You can find information in medical journals about the other ways that depression can be treated.
Myth: Depression is the Result of Going Through a Hard Time
Fact: Depression may occur as the result of going through a difficult ordeal such as job loss or a break up. However, that is not always the case. There are genetic factors that can cause depression to develop.
Myth: You can Snap out of Depression
Fact: People do not choose to be depressed. This is a medical condition that cannot be cured with changing your attitude or thinking positively. It is also important to remember that depression can affect anyone.
Myth: You Will get Depression if Your Parents had It
Fact: Genetics does play a role in the development of depression. However, you may not develop depression even if your parents or close relatives had it. It is important to be aware of your family history, but you do not want to worry too much about risk factors that you are not able to control.
Myth: Antidepressants Alter Your Personality
Fact: Antidepressants do alter your brain chemistry. However, this will not cause changes in your personality. Antidepressants are designed to help you feel like yourself again.
Myth: Depression is a Part of life
Fact: Senior citizens do experience life events that can lead to depression such as the death of a spouse and financial worries. However, depression is not a part of the natural aging process. People who are over the age of 65 are the age group with the highest suicide rate. That is why it is important for seniors to get help if they are depressed.