World Health Day 2017: Depression

Today, April 7th, is World Health Day. Each year the World Health Organization (WHO) focuses on an important health issue that affects the health of millions of people worldwide. This year the theme is Depression.

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More than 300 million people suffer from depression and it is the leading cause of illness and disability worldwide. The goal of World Health Day is to help people with depression seek help.

Additionally, the WHO wants to inform the public on the causes, consequences, preventions, and treatments associated with depression and inform friends/families on how they can provide support to their loved ones.

depressionThe WHO Defines Depression As:

An illness characterized by persistent sadness and a loss of interest in activities that you normally enjoy, accompanied by an inability to carry out daily activities, for at least two weeks. In addition, people with depression normally have several of the following symptoms: a loss of energy; a change in appetite; sleeping more or less; anxiety; reduced concentration; indecisiveness; restlessness; feelings of worthlessness, guilt, or hopelessness; and thoughts of self-harm or suicide.

What Can You Do if You Think You’re Suffering from Depression:
  • Talk to someone you trust about your feelings
  • Seek professional help
  • Remember that with the right help, you can get better
  • Keep up with activities that you used to enjoy when you were well
  • Stay connected. Keep in contact with family and friends
  • Exercise regularly, even if it’s just a short walk
  • Stick to regular eating and sleeping habits
  • Accept that you might have depression and adjust your expectations. You may not be able to accomplish as much as you do usually
  • Avoid or restrict alcohol intake and refrain from using illicit drugs; they can worsen depression
  • If you feel suicidal, contact someone for help immediately
Need Someone to Talk To? These Hotlines Can Help:
  • 408 Help Line: 416-408-4357
  • Mental Health Helpline: 1-866-531-2600
  • Kids Help Phone: 1-800-668-6868
  • The Gerstein Centre: (416) 929-5200

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