Depression Essay

2698 words - 11 pages

Depression
Consider this: Elizabeth Wurtzel has struggled with depression throughout her life. She has a history of suicide attempts, self-mutilations, and serious mood swings. She took numerous antidepressants and medications in an attempt to regulate her irregular behavior. She quit using the medications due to the multiple side effects the drugs had on her. The result was chaos; after Elizabeth quit taking her medication her body experienced episodes of withdrawal. Despite her continued attempts to combat her illness, she experienced nervous breakdowns and alienation from her friends and family. Elizabeth Wurtzel reluctantly went back to taking medication despite the potentially serious side effects of taking so many drugs (Kim 46).
“ In the news, on the streets, and in neighborhoods, individuals are confronted with a variety of social problems”(Kim 7). A person may watch a loved one battle cancer, suspect a friend of having bulimia, or he/she may struggle daily with depression (Kim 7). The National Institute of Mental Health estimates that as many as 17 million Americans each year suffer from depression. About one in twenty-five of these sufferers is under the age of 18, and one in seven women will experience depression in her lifetime. The illness strikes regardless of age, gender, class, culture, or ethnic background (Kim 9). The occurrence and distribution of depression in a population may be related to a variety of factors. Such factors include a wide range of possibilities such as sex, age, living in the town, living in the country, nutrition, marital status, socioeconomic background, and genetic factors (Winokur 18). “Many people who are depressed do not seek treatment either because they are unaware that their condition can be helped or because they are all too aware of the stigma and shame associated with depression”(Kim 9). Discovering and analyzing the complexities of issues that are associated with depression is a necessity in the goal of obtaining a comprehensive understanding of depression and of those who suffer from the disease (Kim 13). In order to completely understand the illness of depression, people should understand what the disease is, what factors cause the disease, and the how disease is treated.
“Feelings of hopelessness, sadness, or discouragement occasionally tug at us all” (Kim 13), but those feelings eventually fade away. These feelings of being depressed can easily be mistaken for the clinical illness of depression, but depression is quite different. The illness of depression is a state of psychological misery that does not go away (Kim 13). It may also be defined as a state of mind and body which is characterized by a change in mood towards being miserable, worried, easily discouraged or agitated, unable to feel emotions, fearful, despondent or hopeless (Winokur 3). People suffering from depression often have slowed mental reactions, trouble concentrating and remembering, and difficulty in interacting in social...

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