Good News About Depression! People Are Taking Ownership Of Their Mental Health Conditions

There’s been a disconnect for the longest time regarding when people had their initial symptoms for depression, and when they made a concerted effort to receive professional diagnosis and treatment (Dattani, 2022).

Members of the public may have feared being ostracized if others found out they suffered from a mental health condition (Community Reach Center, 2019). They may have thought their symptoms would miraculously disappear. To expand further, they may have been unaware of the procedures in obtaining mental health services, while others may not have had mental health services readily available in their locale (Community Reach Center, 2019).

Regardless of the explanations for not getting mental health services, a mental health condition is probably the most intrusive ailment a person could ever encounter because the brain controls the entire body. As a result, the longer depression goes untreated the greater the chances for a brain chemical imbalance.

The Mayo Foundation For Medical Education And Research (2022) provides images [Positron Emission Tomography (PET) Scans] of a brain under the influence of depression, and what a healthy brain looks like.

Consequently, the person who could have obtained early diagnosis and been placed on a psychotherapy and Cognitive Behavioral Therapy (CBT) treatment program (World Health Organization, 2021, and National Alliance On Mental Health, 2017), now has to be placed on psychotropics because they waited too long to seek help.

Depression can shrink the brain (i.e., the brain is under assault from depression), which can interfere with the natural flow of neurotransmitters (Amiel, 2022) and (Davey, 2015).

As the years progress, more people are getting early diagnosis for symptoms associated with depression, and doing so in earlier periods of their lives (Dattani, 2022). This acceptance can be considered a brand of preventative treatment by health consumers: People who take an active role in maintaining good health, and taking steps in avoiding a current condition from becoming worse (Health Consumers NSW, 2019).

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References

Amiel, M., M. D. (2022). What Happens To The Brain During Depression? Retrieved From https://www.transformationstreatment.center/treatment/what-happens-to-the-brain-during-depression/#:~:text=Depression%20causes%20the%20hippocampus%20to,of%20cortisol%2C%20the%20amygdala%20enlarges.

Community Rearch Center. (2019). Why People Don’t Seek Treatment For Depression. Retrieved From https://www.communityreachcenter.org/news/why-people-dont-seek-treatment-for-depression/

Dattani, S. (2022). At What Age Do People Experience Depression For the First Time? Retrieved From https://ourworldindata.org/depression-age-of-onset#:~:text=As%20the%20data%20shows%2C%20on,later%2C%20at%2031%20years%20old.

Davey, M. L. (2015). Mental Health. Chronic Depression Shrinks Brain’s Memories And Emotions. Retrieved From https://www.theguardian.com/society/2015/jun/30/chronic-depression-shrinks-brains-memories-and-emotions

Health Consumers NSW. (2019). Who Is A Health Consumer? and other definitions. Retrieved From https://www.hcnsw.org.au/consumers-toolkit/who-is-a-health-consumer-and-other-definitions/#:~:text=Health%20Consumers%20are%20people%20who,the%20service%20in%20the%20future.

Mayo Foundation For Medical Education And Research. (2022). PET Scan Of The Brain For Depression. Retrieved From https://www.mayoclinic.org/tests-procedures/pet-scan/multimedia/-pet-scan-of-the-brain-for-depression/img-20007400#:~:text=A%20PET%20scan%20can%20compare,brain%20activity%20due%20to%20depression.

National Alliance On Mental Health. (2017). Depression. About Mental Health. Retrieved From https://www.nami.org/About-Mental-Illness/Mental-Health-Conditions/Depression

World Health Organization. (2021). Depression. Key Facts. Retrieved From https://www.who.int/news-room/fact-sheets/detail/depression

Endnotes

  1. Solmi, M., Radua, J., Olivola, M., Croce, E., Soardo, L., Salazar de Pablo, G., Il Shin, J., Kirkbride, J. B., Jones, P., Kim, J. H., Kim, J. Y., Carvalho, A. F., Seeman, M. V., Correll, C. U., & Fusar-Poli, P. (2021). Age at onset of mental disorders worldwide: Large-scale meta-analysis of 192 epidemiological studies. Molecular Psychiatryhttps://doi.org/10.1038/s41380-021-01161-7
    The studies included in this meta-analysis measured this age in different ways. Some studies looked at the age when symptoms of the disorder began, some looked at when they were first diagnosed, and others looked at when they first received treatment for the disorder or were first hospitalized for it. The median age of onset for some disorders, such as substance use disorders, mood disorders and anxiety disorders was earlier when it was measured by first symptoms than when it was measured by first diagnosis or first hospitalization.
  2. Medici, C. R., Videbech, P., Gustafsson, L. N., & Munk-Jørgensen, P. (2015). Mortality and secular trend in the incidence of bipolar disorder. Journal of Affective Disorders183, 39–44. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.jad.2015.04.032
    Mauz, E., & Jacobi, F. (2008). Psychische Störungen und soziale Ungleichheit im Geburtskohortenvergleich. Psychiatrische Praxis35(07), 343-352. https://www.thieme-connect.com/products/ejournals/abstract/10.1055/s-2008-1067557
    Scott, J., Etain, B., Azorin, J. M., & Bellivier, F. (2018). Secular trends in the age at onset of bipolar I disorder – Support for birth cohort effects from international, multi-centre clinical observational studies. European Psychiatry52, 61–67. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.eurpsy.2018.04.002
    Plana‐Ripoll, O., Momen, N. C., McGrath, J. J., Wimberley, T., Brikell, I., Schendel, D., Thygesen, M., Weye, N., Pedersen, C. B., Mors, O., Mortensen, P. B., & Dalsgaard, S. (2022). Temporal changes in sex‐ and age‐specific incidence profiles of mental disorders—A nationwide study from 1970 to 2016. Acta Psychiatrica Scandinavica, acps.13410. https://doi.org/10.1111/acps.13410
  3. Plana‐Ripoll, O., Momen, N. C., McGrath, J. J., Wimberley, T., Brikell, I., Schendel, D., Thygesen, M., Weye, N., Pedersen, C. B., Mors, O., Mortensen, P. B., & Dalsgaard, S. (2022). Temporal changes in sex‐ and age‐specific incidence profiles of mental disorders—A nationwide study from 1970 to 2016. Acta Psychiatrica Scandinavica, acps.13410. https://doi.org/10.1111/acps.13410
  4. Schomerus, G., Schwahn, C., Holzinger, A., Corrigan, P. W., Grabe, H. J., Carta, M. G., & Angermeyer, M. C. (2012). Evolution of public attitudes about mental illness: A systematic review and meta-analysis: Evolution of public attitudes. Acta Psychiatrica Scandinavica125(6), 440–452. https://doi.org/10.1111/j.1600-0447.2012.01826.x
    Angermeyer, M. C., Matschinger, H., & Schomerus, G. (2013). Attitudes towards psychiatric treatment and people with mental illness: changes over two decades. The British Journal of Psychiatry203(2), 146-151.
  5. While 0.4% of children and adolescents were in contact with a psychiatric department in 2001, that figure was 3.3% in 2018. The Danish Health Data Authority. (2019) Key numbers about health care in Denmark (in Danish). https://sundhedsdatastyrelsen.dk/da/tal-og-analyser/analyser-og-rapporter/sundhedsvaesenet/noegletal-om-sundhedsvaesenet
    ​​Schmidt, M., Schmidt, S. A. J., Adelborg, K., Sundbøll, J., Laugesen, K., Ehrenstein, V., & Sørensen, H. T. (2019). The Danish health care system and epidemiological research: From health care contacts to database records. Clinical EpidemiologyVolume 11, 563–591. https://doi.org/10.2147/CLEP.S179083
  6. Babatunde, G. B., van Rensburg, A. J., Bhana, A., & Petersen, I. (2021). Barriers and Facilitators to Child and Adolescent Mental Health Services in Low-and-Middle-Income Countries: A Scoping Review. Global Social Welfare8(1), 29–46. https://doi.org/10.1007/s40609-019-00158-z
    Kieling, C., Baker-Henningham, H., Belfer, M., Conti, G., Ertem, I., Omigbodun, O., Rohde, L. A., Srinath, S., Ulkuer, N., & Rahman, A. (2011). Child and adolescent mental health worldwide: Evidence for action. The Lancet378(9801), 1515–1525. https://doi.org/10.1016/S0140-6736(11)60827-1

Healthy and Unhealthy Gut Bacteria

Since the January 10, 2014 posting, Psych Central: “Antibodies in GI Tract Linked to Greater Risk for Bipolar Illness”, research on gut bacteria has increased exponentially regarding how good bacteria plays a positive role for the mind and body, and in particular cognitive difficulties that can manifest from unhealthy bacteria.  The following are links for additional literature concerning both kinds of bacteria:

 

Microbes Help Produce Serotonin in Gut (California Institute of Technology (Caltech.edu), April 9, 2015)

Immune system uses gut bacteria to control glucose metabolism (Science Daily, November 14, 2016)

Gut microbiome contributes to Parkinson’s, study suggests (MedicalNewsToday.com, December 2, 2016)

Likely Connection Between Obsessive-Compulsive Disorder and the Gut Microbiome (Psychiatry Advisor, May 17, 2016)

The Gastrointestinal Tract Microbiome and Potential Link to Alzheimer’s Disease (US National Library of Medicine, National Institutes of Health – Frontiers in Neurology, April 4, 2014)

The tantalizing links between gut microbes and the brain (Nature, International Weekly Journal of Science, October 16, 2015)

 

The following resource is a brief presentation by Dr. Samuel Hunter:

[VIDEO] “Gut Bacteria and Multiple Sclerosis”

 

 

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Stress Management Approaches

Everyone experiences stress from time to time, and will need to discover and practice effective stress management approaches for a healthy psychological condition.

As an aside, stress can lead to depression, and the longer depression lasts the better the opportunity for neurotransmitters becoming damaged, requiring an individual to obtain psychotropics from a mental health professional.

The following resources provide beneficial information in reducing/managing stress:

 

Articles

Mayo Clinic: Healthy Lifestyle – Stress Management – Stress Basics

MindTools.com: Albrecht’s Four Types of Stress – Managing Common Pressures

 

[Videos]

Stress Management Techniques

 

Relaxation Video for Stress Management

 

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Running – The Complete Workout

The following resource explains how a person’s entire body, and aspects of their life, can improve significantly by adding this form of aerobics in their fitness regimen:

[Video] “Health & Mental Health Benefits of Running”

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