Tuesday, May 17, 2011

An apple a day, keeps depression away.

Depression is the Lord Voldemort of the real word. It is a psychological condition which nobody wants to talk about. Depression is not something that can be measured using a thermometer. It is a subtle poison that moves through the body stealthily, eating you alive.

Etymologically speaking depression is defined as a mental state characterized by a pessimistic sense of inadequacy and a despondent lack of activity, in a layman’s language depression is a state where the milieu of negativity makes you feel useless and along comes a lack of hope that things would ever be good again.

Depression is not easy to detect, your body temperature remains the same and there is no change in the color of your skin, eyes or tongue.

How would I know if I am depressed?
·         You will have no control over your mood swings. One time you will feel happy as if there is nothing that can take you down and the very next moment you will be sad, as if your feet have touched the ground.
·         You will have no confidence in yourself, you don’t want to take responsibility and all you want to do is to go back to sleep and never see the light of day again.
·         You will start asking yourself questions such as “What is life?”, “What is my destiny?”, “What is the purpose of my life?”, “Who will cry when I die?”, “Am I visible?”, “Does it matter if I live or die?”, “Why can’t I turn back time?” all at the same time.
·         You don’t want to laugh again as if every smile is a betrayal. The emotionless calm composure is your solace.
·         You start loosing interest in everything; you cut yourself off from the outer world, no phone calls, no social networking, avoiding celebrations and signing out of chat when pinged.
·         A drastic change will come in your I tunes collection, there will be a handful of most played songs, the songs that remind you of the good old past, the lyrics match with the present state of your mind. A subtle drum beat in the background, a husky voice, cords of guitar struck intermittently, with a few lines played acoustically.
·         You can’t concentrate on your job; you stare in one direction unaware of the time and the people around you. You are so engrossed in yourself that sometimes you forget the most basic things such as; did I apply soap on my face while taking a bath?
·         Inconsequential things start pushing you to the edge, which either results in either you getting angry at someone or you end up crying in seclusion.
·         A sound sleep becomes a farfetched idea. It becomes impossible to fall asleep. You wake up in the middle of the night quiet often, wondering what you are going to do with your life.
·         You feel restless and tired most of the time, usually followed by body aches and headache and sometime a constant flickering of eye (preferably right).
·         The final blow comes with a suicidal tendency.

Depression if detected at an early stage can be overcome very easily at 1.2 paisa/sec, if you are using Vodafone.

Just one phone call, an hour long talk with your best friend and if he is not available then a call to your second best friend is all you need to cure early depression. Sharing your feelings, shortcomings, fears and failures with your friends is much easier than sharing it with your family and relatives.

A psychologist a day, keeps the depression away.

Talk to a specialist. Sessions with an experienced psychiatrist can be of great help when the going gets tough. It is easy to cry your heart out in front of a complete stranger.
·         His experience can help you get out of this depression at a quicker pace.
·         He is a complete stranger who is no position to judge you, and if you feel uncomfortable, you can always walk out.

You can run, but you can’ hide:

Depression affects us all, you can run, ignore or disagree but it’s right there in your life, in your son’s life, in the life of your friend, your parents, your spouse, your neighbor, it’s in the life of every stranger you come across, it’s in the life of the person travelling in a rickshaw, driving a rickshaw, sitting in the backseat of an Audi or behind the steering wheels of an Audi.

Depression is unbiased, dispassionate, impartial, fair, evenhanded and neutral. It is like a common cold, cough or fever; it affects us all irrespective of age, sex, class, color, profession and bank balance as we are all sons and daughter of Adam. There is a high possibility that it was genetically transferred down the line, Adam became a victim of depression after getting married.

Depression: A bacteria/virus

What causes depression is a vital question. How do I get it, is on the minds of everyone who are affected by depression. Is it genetic? Is it because of the heavy dinner I had last night? Is it because I was not using protection? Was it the soup? Am I being poisoned? Keep your dueling thoughts at rest as here we discuss how, where and when you get depressed.
·         In 90% of the cases depression is directly proportional to your dreams, when things don’t go the way they are planned, depression show its fangs.
·         For married couples, the cause of depression is a failed marriage; a divorce lurking in the shadows. Depression could be due to performance issues in bed, financial troubles, trust issues, compatibility etc.
·         Career is the biggest factor in depression. Depression is right around the corner if you are not able to climb the promotion ladder or not able to choose the right career. People stuck at a job they have no interest in are much more prone to depression than those who couldn’t succeed at their respective jobs.
·         Family issues also cause depression. Family ties are like bonds of blood and when one is broken, you bleed red. It is more prevalent in joint families where dispute between brothers leads to depression.
·         When we were young, we never thought about working in an IT company, some aspire to be a writer, doctor, IAS officer, 70% of boys dream of being the next Sachin Tendulkar and girls dream of being the next Miss India. We grew up staring in the mirror, wondering “What would I be?”, but these dreams are lost in the sands of time. Today, looking in the mirror, we wonder “What have I become!”
·         Most teenagers suffer from depression when they couldn’t get through an entrance exam, as if someone has put a question mark on their talent.

The Last Battle:

Three years back, I was a young kid trying to make it through graduation. One fine day I came across a news clipping of a boy committing suicide , in his suicide note he thanked his friends, family for giving him the best life he could ever imagine, ending his letter with the exact words “Sometimes goodbye is the only way.” What I can’t forget was the reaction of a very good friend of mine, “Such a coward!”, these words resonates through my body every time I found myself on the edge of giving up.

I can never come to terms with what he said. We have long forgotten the basic etymological definition of a coward; a coward is a person who shows fear and timidity. People who commit suicide are confused; they have lost their will to survive. It is not easy to give up all the memories, leave behind all the loved ones or drop the possibility of making your dreams come true, it takes courage to walk down this road. Our job is to make sure that they never walk down this path. Sometimes a simple phone call, a small gesture of “we care” can do miracles. Speaking from my own experience, there hasn’t been a single day when I don’t think about walking down this boulevard, but something stops me, a silhouette of hope. It is not anything divine; they are my friends, my family and sometimes my good friend who would think of me as a coward if I give up.

Prevention is better than cure.
·         Depression is a phase, which cannot be treated by a dose of ibrufen it requires patience and belief in yourself.
·         Keep yourself busy, an empty mind is the adobe of depression.
·         The best way to get out of depression is by sharing your thoughts and feeling with your friends, family or a specialist.
·         Medication is the last resort, though people may benefit from antidepressants but they are not the cure. Anti depressants work by controlling the neurotransmitters in the brain. They may be effective but they come with a lot side effects namely, dry mouth, sexual dysfunction (nobody wants that), serotonin syndrome etc.
·         This may sound baba ramdev types, but yoga helps settle the dueling thoughts in your mind.

Depression is like puberty.
Everybody goes through this phase, some fall, some rise above, some go through it alone, some take help from others, some pass with flying colors, some end up in the ditch. All you need to do is Hold on.


1 comment:

Apoorva said...

Nice article ;)