Depression And Suicide Risk
Depression usually does not lead to suicide ideation. But, according to the US Department of Health and Human Services, studies have shown that about two percent of people who have been treated for depression in an outpatient setting will die by suicide. If the treatment is inpatient, the number doubles to four percent. Men are more likely to die by suicide after depression than women. Find hotlines and organizations for support in our emergency mental health resources directory.
Schizophrenia And Other Psychoses
Schizophrenia is a severe mental disorder, affecting 20 million people worldwide1. Psychoses, including schizophrenia, are characterized by distortions in thinking, perception, emotions, language, sense of self and behaviour. Common psychotic experiences include hallucinations and delusions . The disorder can make it difficult for people affected to work or study normally.
Stigma and discrimination can result in a lack of access to health and social services. Furthermore, people with psychosis are at high risk of exposure to human rights violations, such as long-term confinement in institutions.
Schizophrenia typically begins in late adolescence or early adulthood. Treatment with medicines and psychosocial support is effective. With appropriate treatment and social support, affected people can lead a productive life and be integrated in society. Facilitation of assisted living, supported housing and supported employment can act as a base from which people with severe mental disorders, including schizophrenia, can achieve numerous recovery goals as they often face difficulty in obtaining or retaining a place to live and normal employment.
How To Tell If You Have Depression
Depression affects people in different ways and can cause a wide variety of symptoms.
They range from lasting feelings of unhappiness and hopelessness, to losing interest in the things you used to enjoy and feeling very tearful. Many people with depression also have symptoms of anxiety.
There can be physical symptoms too, such as feeling constantly tired, sleeping badly, having no appetite or sex drive, and various aches and pains.
The symptoms of depression range from mild to severe. At its mildest, you may simply feel persistently low in spirit, while severe depression can make you feel suicidal, that life is no longer worth living.
Most people experience feelings of stress, anxiety or low mood during difficult times. A low mood may improve after a short period of time, rather than being a sign of depression.
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What If I Am Not Happy With My Treatment
If you are not happy with your treatment you can:
- talk to your doctor to see if they can suggest changes,
- get an advocate to help you speak your doctor,
- ask for a second opinion if you feel it would help,
- contact Patient Advice and Liaison Service and see whether they can help, or
- make a complaint.
There is more information about these options below.
An advocate is independent from the NHS. They are free to use. They can be useful if you find it difficult to get your views heard.
There are different types of advocates available. Community advocates can support you to get a health professional to listen to your concerns. And help you to get the treatment that you would like. They arent available in all areas.
You can ask an advocate to help you make a complaint. Advocates that do this are called NHS complaints advocates. They are free to use and don t work for the NHS. They re available in all areas.
You can search online to search for a local advocacy service. If you cant find a service you can call our advice service 0808 801 0525 . You can email us too at . We will look for you.
Talk to your doctor about your treatment to see if you can resolve the problem with them first. If you dont agree with their decisions about diagnosis or treatment, you could ask for a second opinion. You are not legally entitled to a second opinion, but your doctor might agree to it if it would help with treatment options.
- Advocacy by clicking here.
Government Of Canada’s Role
The Government of Canada works to help Canadians maintain and improve their mental health, including coping with depression. Within its jurisdiction, the Government of Canada works to:
- Support research and its dissemination
- Strengthen the capacity of the primary health care, home care and acute care sectors to effectively deliver mental health programs and services
- Raise awareness through social marketing campaigns
- Conduct surveillance on mental health trends in the population.
In 2007, the federal government provided funding to establish and support the Mental Health Commission of Canada to lead the development of a national mental health strategy, create a knowledge exchange centre and reduce the stigma about mental illness.
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Does Health Insurance Cover Depression And Other Mental Illnesses
Not all health insurance plans in the UAE provide psychiatry coverage that covers the mental health of the insured. However, 30 per cent of insurance plans do provide coverage for mental illnesses. The insurance premiums for these insurance plans are higher in comparison to other health insurance plans. The cost of such health insurance plans deter patients from seeking out a cure.
In the UAE, people qualifying to be part of a low salary band can take advantage of psychiatric benefits of the Essential Benefits Plan provided by the Dubai Health Authority. The insurance companies like ADNIC, AXA Insurance, RAK National Insurance Company, Union Insurance and more, who have partnered with Dubai Health Authority, can provide mental health coverage in the health insurance plans. The insurance plan starts at AED 560 per annum.
But this leaves us with a question What about people who cannot afford to get mental health treatment? People who are neither eligible for the Essential Benefits Plan nor can they afford to get their mental illness treated can check out their insurance options by contacting one of the aggregators such as Policybazaar.ae. Mental diseases must not be left untreated as it can worsen the patients mental health and impact their own and their loved ones lives.
Keep reading to go through the major exclusions to have a better understanding of what will and what will not be covered under a mental health insurance plan.
Future Directions And Implications
This review has several implications for clinical practice and public policy. First, health behavior interventions have untapped potential to reduce suffering related to depression, especially considering that they are relatively inexpensive, safe, sustainable, and benefit overall health . Second, policy interventions to reverse the obesity epidemic may be essential to curb depression in the general population. Taxation, subsidization, and regulatory policies should help make healthy choices the easy choice. Many suggested interventions to combat obesity would not only reduce human suffering, but would be cost-saving . As an example, urban sprawl is associated with less walking, more time spent in cars, and likelihood of obesity . Urban development and public policies that prioritize public transportation, land use mix, safe recreation space, and foster walking and cycling would likely benefit both human and environmental health. And third, the data relating inequality to worse physical and mental health suggest consideration of taxation policies toward a more equitable distribution of wealth. While these proposed public initiatives would face intense opposition from parties with vested interests in maintaining the status quo, government-led systemic intervention may be our best hope to gain control of this public health crisis.
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Could I Have Depression
- I feel worthless, helpless or hopeless
- I sleep more or less than usual
- Im eating more or less than usual
- Im having difficulty concentrating or making decisions
- Ive lost interest in activities I used to enjoy
- I have less desire for sex
- I avoid other people
- I have overwhelming feelings of sadness or grief
- Im feeling unreasonably guilty
- I have a lot of unexplained stomachaches and headaches
- I feel very tired and/or restless
- I have thoughts of death or suicide
- Im feeling more tearful or irritable than usual
If you agree with five or more of these statements and have been experiencing them for more than two weeks you should talk to your doctor.
Depression is very treatable. In fact, with the right treatment, 80% of people with depression feel better or no longer experience symptoms at all. Some common treatments, used on their own or in combination are:
Some people find that herbal remedies, such as St. Johns Wort, help with their depression symptoms. Remember that even herbal remedies can have side effects and may interfere with other medications. Dosages can also vary depending on the brand you use. Talk about the risks and benefits of herbal or other alternative treatments with your health care provider and make sure they know all the different treatments youre trying.
What Causes Mood Disorders
Mood disorders have no single cause, but several risk factors interact to produce the clinical symptoms of the various mood disorders. Individuals with depression and bipolar disorder often find a history of these disorders among immediate family members.Footnote 3 ,Footnote 4 Many different genes may act together and in combination with other factors to cause a mood disorder. Research is getting closer to identifying the specific genes that contribute to depression.
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How Is Depression Diagnosed
The diagnosis of depression often begins with a medical and psychiatric history and possibly also a physical exam by a health care provider. Screening and treatment can be managed by a primary care doctor or a mental health professional. Although there are no laboratory tests to specifically diagnose depression, the health care provider may use various tests to look for other medical conditions as the cause of the symptoms. If another medical condition is ruled out, your health care provider may begin treatment with a medicine for depression, or may refer you to a psychiatrist or psychologist for evaluation.
Diagnosis is based on the intensity and duration of symptoms — including any problems with functioning caused by the symptoms.
What Illnesses Happen With Depression
Itâs common for people to have other medical or mental health problems along with depression, such as anxiety, obsessive compulsive disorder, panic disorder, phobias, substance use disorders, and eating disorders. If you or a loved one has symptoms of depression or another mental illness, talk to your doctor. Treatments can help.
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Are There Different Types Of Depression
If you are given a diagnosis of depression, you might be told that you have mild, moderate or severe depression. This describes what sort of impact your symptoms are having on you currently, and what sort of treatment you’re likely to be offered. You might move between mild, moderate and severe depression during one episode of depression or across different episodes.
There are also some specific types of depression:
- Seasonal affective disorder depression that occurs at a particular time of year, or during a particular season. See our page on SAD for more information.
- Dysthymia continuous mild depression that lasts for two years or more. Also called persistent depressive disorder or chronic depression.
- Prenatal depression depression that occurs during pregnancy. This is sometimes also called antenatal depression.
- Postnatal depression depression that occurs in the first year after giving birth.
See our page on postnatal depression and perinatal mental health for more information. The PANDAS Foundation also has information and support for anyone experiencing prenatal or postnatal depression.
Is premenstrual dysphoric disorder a type of depression?
PMDD is a severe form of premenstrual syndrome . Many women experience PMS, but for some women their symptoms are severe enough to seriously impact their daily life. This is when you might receive a diagnosis of PMDD.
What Risks And Complications Can Depression Cause
Having depression can cause other problems. It can affect your mental health as well as your physical health, and it may affect other areas of your life too. For example, depression may cause:
- disturbed sleep,
- difficulties with work and your hobbies,
- difficulties keeping contact with friends and families, or
- suicidal thoughts or thoughts of self-harming.
Some people might also drink more alcohol to try and relieve depression. However, as we said in the previous section above, this can actually make depression worse.
If you have any of these problems, speak to your GP.
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Genes’ Effect On Mood And Depression
Every part of your body, including your brain, is controlled by genes. Genes make proteins that are involved in biological processes. Throughout life, different genes turn on and off, so that in the best case they make the right proteins at the right time. But if the genes get it wrong, they can alter your biology in a way that results in your mood becoming unstable. In a person who is genetically vulnerable to depression, any stress can then push this system off balance.
Mood is affected by dozens of genes, and as our genetic endowments differ, so do our depressions. The hope is that as researchers pinpoint the genes involved in mood disorders and better understand their functions, depression treatment can become more individualized and more successful. Patients would receive the best medication for their type of depression.
Another goal of gene research, of course, is to understand how, exactly, biology makes certain people vulnerable to depression. For example, several genes influence the stress response, leaving us more or less likely to become depressed in response to trouble.
The evidence for other types of depression is more subtle, but it is real. A person who has a first-degree relative who suffered major depression has an increase in risk for the condition of 1.5% to 3% over normal.
Can Depression Be Prevented
You can help prevent depression by getting enough sleep, eating a healthy diet and practicing regular self-care activities such as exercise, meditation and yoga.
If youve had depression before, you may be more likely to experience it again. If you have depression symptoms, get help. Care can help you feel better sooner.
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Depression And Suicide: Getting Help In A Crisis
Some people who are depressed may think about hurting themselves or committing suicide . If you or someone you know is having thoughts about hurting themselves or committing suicide please seek immediate help. The following resources can help:
- Call to reach a 24hour crisis center or dial 911. is the National Suicide Prevention Lifelineexternal icon, which provides free confidential help to people in crisis. The Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administrationexternal icon runs this lifeline.
- Get help from your primary doctor or other health care provider.
- Reach out to a close friend or loved one.
- Contact a minister, spiritual leader, or someone else in your faith community.
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How Common Is Depression
Major depression is one of the most common mental illnesses in the country. An estimated 17.3 million adults in the US reported having at least one major depressive episode over the course of a year, a 2017 report by the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration shows.
Thats 7.1% of all adults ages 18 and older. Women have a higher prevalence of experiencing a major depressive episode than men .
Depression is especially crushing for the workforce: Its the number one leading cause of disability worldwide, according to the World Health Organization. The total economic burden of MDD is estimated to be $210.5 billion per year in the United States alonea figure that reflects costs associated with missed days, reduced productivity, treatment for depression, and suicide.
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What If My Symptoms Dont Improve
If youre not responding to treatment, you may live with treatment resistant depression. This is when your symptoms have not improved after at least 2 standard treatments. This can also be known as treatment-refractory depression.
There is currently no official criteria used to diagnose treatment resistant depression.
What treatment is available for treatment-resistant depression?There are treatment options for treatment resistant depression. Even if antidepressants have not worked already for you, your doctor may suggest a different antidepressant from a different class.
The new antidepressant you are offered will depend on the first antidepressant you were given.
Sometimes your doctor can prescribe a second type of medication to go with your antidepressant. This can sometimes help the antidepressant work better than it does by itself.
Where antidepressants have not worked, your doctor may suggest talking therapies, ECT or brain stimulation treatments. See the previous section for more information on these.
What is an implanted vagus nerve stimulator, and how is it used in treatment resistant depression?If you live with treatment resistant depression, and youve not responded to other treatments, you may be able ask for an implanted vagus nerve stimulator.
Please speak to your doctor if youre interested in this treatment and for more information. You may be able to get this treatment funded through an Individual Funding Request.
- NHS – Your Rights by clicking here.
How Can I Help Someone With Depression
Helping someone with depression might not look a single way. However, things that you can do to help include encouraging treatment, listening with compassion, helping the person suffering with daily tasks, be vigilant for signs of suicidal behavior, and to make sure you are caring for yourself, too.
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Major Depressive Disorder With Seasonal Pattern
Previously called seasonal affective disorder, or SAD, this type of depression is related to the reduction in daylight during the fall and winter.
It lifts during the rest of the year and in response to light therapy.
People who live in countries with long or severe winters seem to be affected more by this condition.
Physical Indicators Of Depression
Research may help to explain why people with depression often complain of physical symptoms like sleeping too much or too little, fatigue, and appetite changes. It is suggested that this may also help to explain why patients with depression tend to have shorter lifespans.
We also know that some medical conditions can lead to depressive symptoms, such as hypothyroidism.
Depression is not simply a problem of the mind, but rather a complex disorder with both biological and social causes connecting the mind and body.
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