Depression is one of the major causes of illness and disability in the world

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The Oms dedicates the “World Health Day” to awareness raising. They suffer more than 300 million people, with an increase of 18% over 2005-2015.

“Depression is one of the major causes of bad health and disability in the world,” said the World Health Organization, according to which more than 300 million people would be depressed, 18% more than estimates obtained over the years 2005 to 2015. Lack of psychological support, along with the fear of being judged, would prevent many from resorting to proper treatment, worsening the health and life conditions of affected individuals.

Just for depression, the World Health Organization has dedicated the World Health Day, which will take place on 7 April. The slogan of the event will be “Depression: Let’s Talk”: the purpose is to make information about a still underestimated disorder, raise awareness and drive people who are suffering from help.

In order to give a dimension to the phenomenon, we start from data: depression has caused nearly 800,000 suicides in 2015, an increase of 20% over the past 10 years. Women are the most affected: 5.1% worldwide, against 3.6% of men and is the second leading cause of death among young people between the ages of 15 and 29. It is therefore a problem that needs to be remedied as soon as possible.

A first step might be to reduce prejudices and discrimination: “That is why we decided to give this name to the campaign,” said Dr. Shekhar Saxena, director of the Department of Mental Health and Substance Abuse of the World Organization of healthcare – For those who live with depression, talking to a trusted person is often the first step before resorting to proper care.”

The second step concerns the investments needed to ensure that everyone can access the treatments. As the Oms emphasizes, in many countries lack the necessary support, and even the richest ones, at least 50% of depressed people do not undergo treatment. On average, according to estimates, only 3% of health funds are used for this purpose.

The World Health Organization has then highlighted the link between depression and other disorders and illnesses. Pathology, for example, increases the risk of diabetes and cardiovascular problems. It produces a loss of energy and appetite in the affected person and a change in the sleep-wake rhythm is often accompanied by anxiety, reduced concentration, and difficulty in making decisions, guilt, and self-righteous thoughts.

Do not minimize it, but accepting it and trying to remedy it is the goal of the WHO campaign. “A better understanding of the pathology and how it can be treated is just the beginning – says Dr. Saxena – What is needed is a health service that also deals with mental disorders accessible to everyone, even to the world’s most distant populations”

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