Depression is a disease that affects many people around the world. Although widespread, there are still certain myths that need to be debunked.
Depression takes many lives: suicide rates have increased, especially with the crisis and the relative difficulties of families in coping with expenses, on pain of losing their homes.
Many times we think that depression is a condition of sadness : we could not be more wrong. Today you will discover the 7 most rooted myths about depression, situations that can help you understand this pathology.
7 myths about depression
1. Depression equals sadness
The first myth is about something we all know. When we are told that a person is suffering from depression, we immediately think that he is very sad. Nothing further from reality.
We all feel a little sad at certain moments in life, but between the latter and depression there is a sea in between. Sadness is fleeting, temporary. Sooner or later, it goes away.
Depression is the opposite. It is not a passing thing, it remains, along with many other conditions : apathy, a feeling of emptiness, pain … It does not come alone, but accompanied by many other negative feelings that make life gray.
2. Anyone with depression is a weakling
Being with depression doesn’t mean you are weak. Many people find people with depression unable to cope with difficulties, not strong enough to cope with life. Depression is a psychological problem that turns your life upside down. It affects in a psychological, biological and social way.
However, suffering from it is not synonymous with weakness. You did not choose to be depressed! You don’t have a weak mind! This belief leads depressed people to isolate themselves and suffer in complete silence, thus being even more sick.
3. Depression does not affect children and adolescents
Why shouldn’t depression affect the little ones? Far from it. It seems that children and adolescents have more and more problems both in the family and outside the home. Broken families, bullying at school, difficulties in being accepted, misunderstandings … all this can cause this pathology to manifest in children.
We do not know how intense depression can affect children and adolescents, if it can be as strong as that experienced by adults. However, we are certain that there are not a few young people who take their own lives; not for a simple moment of sadness, but because of a severe depressive phase.
4. Depression goes away with time
Depression is not temporary, something that fades away overnight. It is persistent, it is so painful and unbearable that it sometimes leads to suicide.
Depression requires professional help, without which it becomes difficult to get out of it. Unless you know how to deal with the disease, consulting a professional will help you overcome it.
It is not just any disease: it destroys, deprives you of the strength, of the hopes, of the will to live. Time doesn’t cure everything; time does not cure depression. Ignoring it won’t help make it disappear.
5. The disease is in your head
Depression, contrary to what one might think, affects not only the mind, but our body in general. Insomnia, fatigue, chronic muscle aches and migraines are some of the symptoms that can occur. Believing that it exists only in our heads, almost as if it were an invention, is a serious mistake. It is not just a mental pathology, it goes beyond that.
Only those who have never come into contact with someone who has suffered from depression can think so superficially. However, no one wants to invent or wish to have such a serious illness.
6. Men do not suffer from depression
One of the most rooted myths, moreover devoid of any foundation. Depression affects both men and women equally, it is not a pathology reserved for the female gender. This is how we think when we consider it a sickness for the weak, as we said before.
Depression certainly affects women more, but that doesn’t mean men don’t suffer from it. In fact, it is even more dangerous for them, because men often tend to disguise their depressive state. Sometimes, it turns out that a man is suffering from depression too late, because the suicide has already happened.
7. Talking about it makes things worse
One of the most common myths about depression is that talking about it makes you feel worse. Absolutely not! If you consider it a taboo subject, it is clear that you will avoid it, but depressed people really need to talk.
For this reason, many of them turn to psychologists, because the family avoids addressing the issue. It’s like it’s something to be ashamed of, that shouldn’t happen, something we think we make worse by talking about it. Nothing further from reality. Taking an interest in a depressed person will allow you to support them and understand some of their sometimes changing behaviors.
Do you know any myths about depression that weren’t included on this list? If so, please share them with us. The time has come to eliminate all the lies that we take for granted about this well-known but at the same time unknown disease.
Images courtesy of Louise Robinson