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Everything we know about depression is wrong

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Dr Joanne Cacciatore, of Arizona State University, became a leading expert on the grief exception after her own baby, Cheyenne, died during childbirth. She had seen many grieving people being told that they were mentally ill for showing distress. She began her research and revealed a key problem with how we talk about depression, anxiety and other forms of suffering.
https://www.theguardian.com/society/2018/jan/07/is-everything-you-think-you-know-about-depression-wrong-johann-hari-lost-connections?CMP=fb_gu&fbclid=IwAR0M-84_3iJTPnkTEBFroOZ0863LsmuhHYjAE30IdGTRFEC9J4yRDy7Dz7A
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we don’t, she said, “consider context”. We act like human distress can be assessed solely on a checklist that can be separated out from our lives, and labelled as brain diseases. If we started to take people’s actual lives into account when we treat depression and anxiety, Joanne explained, it would require “an entire system overhaul”. She told me that when “you have a person with extreme human distress, [we need to] stop treating the symptoms. The symptoms are a messenger of a deeper problem. Let’s get to the deeper problem.”
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What are your thoughts on this study? Let us discuss.
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If you are depressed and anxious, you are not a machine with malfunctioning parts. You are a human being with unmet needs. The only real way out of our epidemic of despair is for all of us, together, to begin to meet those human needs – for deep connection, to the things that really matter in life.
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Understanding the root cause of depression is a vital first step in being able to cure it. Our longing for connection is innate. It never leaves us. Perhaps depression and anxiety are an early warning signal, an engine light alerting us to the malfunction in the car.
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Johann Hari says depression is a collective problem caused by something that has gone wrong with our way of living and our culture. These conditions show us there is something very wrong with the way society works. And, they give us an opportunity to make vital changes in our lives. He advocates reconnection, or what he calls a different kind of antidepressant.
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We need to reconnect to other people, to social prescribing, to meaningful work, and to meaningful values. Reconnect to sympathetic joy and overcome the addiction we have to the self. We also need to acknowledge and overcome our childhood trauma and restore our future.
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Some people inherit genes that contribute to depression. But not everyone who has a family member with depression will develop it too. And many people with no family history of depression still get depressed. So genes are one factor, but they aren't the only reason for depression.
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Things like stress, using alcohol or drugs, and hormone changes also affect the brain's delicate chemistry and mood.
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Daylight affects how the brain produces melatonin and serotonin. These neurotransmitters help regulate a person's sleep–wake cycles, energy, and mood. When there is less daylight, the brain produces more melatonin. When there is more daylight, the brain makes more serotonin. Shorter days and longer hours of darkness in fall and winter may lead the body to have more melatonin and less serotonin. This imbalance is what creates the conditions for depression in some people — a condition known as seasonal affective disorder (SAD). Exposure to light can help improve mood for people affected by SAD.
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For some people, a negative, stressful, or unhappy family atmosphere can lead to depression. Other high-stress living situations — such as poverty, homelessness, or violence — can contribute, too.
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Certain medications—such as Accutane, interferon-alpha, sleeping pills, and corticosteroids—may increase a person's risk for depression.
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You can endlessly debate whether city or country life is better. But research has found that people living in urban settings do have a 39% higher risk of mood disorders than those in rural regions.
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