Pills medicine medication treatment 370 (R).
(photo credit: Srdjan Zivulovic / Reuters)
Fourteen percent of Israelis, as well as 14% of the world’s total population,
suffer from clinical depression, but many do not seek professional help,
according to experts organizing World Anxiety and Depression Awareness Month in
The condition, which can be treated successfully with
medication and psychological or psychiatric support, is the most common mental
condition in the world.
The prevalence is higher among women than men: a
quarter of women and an eighth of men will suffer from at least one episode of
depression during their lifetimes. In addition, 3-5% of teenagers suffer
from depression – even the most serious types – in any given
Treatment for depression in this country is included in the basket
of health services.
Family physicians – and not just psychiatrists and
other mental health professionals – are permitted to treat
The World Health Organization estimates that, by 2020,
clinical depression will be ranked among the most common serious conditions
globally after heart attacks, when assessed for the loss of workdays and
All the causes for depression are not known, even though
research has shown that biological and emotional factors can increase the risk.
In the past decade, genetic factors inherited from parents have also been
implicated. Low self-esteem and extreme pessimism can be involved, as well as
stress and difficult life experiences.
Among the symptoms are feelings of
sadness, emptiness, pessimism, self-blame, helplessness, a lack of self-value,
sleep problems, lack of appetite, headaches, weight loss and a desire to be
alone most of the time.
Unfortunately, depressed people often have
difficulty thinking clearly or recognizing their symptoms, thus support from
family members and friends who urge getting professional help can point them in
the right direction.
Many sufferers decline help because they fear that
anti-depressants cause side effects or believe that going for help will
A MarketWatch poll of a representative sample including
505 Israeli adults showed that, of those who had suffered from a bout with
depression, 80% did not take anti-depressants of any kind. Younger people had a
greater tendency than older people not to get medications for depression.