Published: Sun, April 09, 2017
Medical | By Dorothy Lyons

Duke And Duchess Of Cambridge Launch Mental Health Film Series

Duke And Duchess Of Cambridge Launch Mental Health Film Series

Subramaniam said this year's World Health Day theme underscores the importance of addressing depression, reducing the stigma surrounding it, and encouraging more people to get help.

We commemorate World Health Day today, and this year, the campaign by the World Health Organisation (WHO) is focused on people suffering from depression, with the theme "Depression: Let's Talk".

"The continuing stigma associated with mental illness was the reason why we chose to name our campaign Depression: let's talk", said Shekhar Saxena, director, department of mental health and substance Abuse at WHO.

"Although depression can and does affect people of all ages, from all walks of life, the risk of becoming depressed is increased by poverty, unemployment, life events such as the death of a loved one or a relationship break-up, physical illness and problems caused by alcohol and drug use", the World Health Organization noted.

The WHO official bared that suicide is the leading cause of death among people aged 15 to 29.

Chief executive Michael Bassingthwaighte said it was an important issue because each year around one million Australians will suffer from depression and over two million will experience anxiety. If you think you have depression, seek help. They said depression is also leading to disability worldwide and is a major contributor to the overall global burden of disease.

He estimated 400,000 Cambodian adults have depression, in line with the global figure of 300 million people, or about four percent of the world's population.

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Who is most likely to get depressed?

Kuwait and many other Arab countries have a high prevalence rate of the illness due to family and social problems, coupled with unjustifiable price hikes and the accelerated use of information technologies including smartphones and social media that made people solitary creatures, he explained.

Medical experts have also said that with the rise in sedentary lifestyle among youngsters, infertility is also becoming a major reason for depression. The losses are incurred by households, employers and governments: for households, with absence from work affecting household income; for employers, with lower productivity of employees when at work and absence from work; and for governments, with higher health and welfare expenditures.

He noted that the best way to help the depressed people is to speak to them. The support of friends and family facilitates recovery from depression.

Dr Saxena added: "A better understanding of depression and how it can be treated, while essential, is just the beginning".

She urged the public to change their thinking about mental ill health as having to do with madness among others.

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