Depression is used to be dismissed as a feeling of low-mood. That feeling when you’re so down or sad but which you eventually get over after crying it out for a day or two. It’s not and it should be taken seriously.
Depression is a serious medical illness that negatively affects how a person feels, the way she thinks and how she acts. It is also one of the leading causes of suicide. Based on data from the Department of Health (DOH) and the World Health Organization (WHO), more than 300 million people are currently undergoing depression, up by more than 18% from 2005 to 2015. In the Philippines, an estimated 3.3 million Filipinos are suffering from depression. Only 1 out of 3 who suffer from depression will seek the help of a specialist and one third will not even be aware of their condition.
As parents, we have a big responsibility in ensuring our child’s/children’s emotional state. We should be aware of the symptoms of Depression so we can get help as soon as possible.
Depression symptoms can vary from mild to severe and can include:
- Feeling sad or having a depressed mood
- Loss of interest or pleasure in activities once enjoyed
- Changes in appetite — weight loss or gain unrelated to dieting
- Trouble sleeping or sleeping too much
- Loss of energy or increased fatigue
- Increase in purposeless physical activity (e.g., hand-wringing or pacing) or slowed movements and speech (actions observable by others)
- Feeling worthless or guilty
- Difficulty thinking, concentrating or making decisions
- Thoughts of death or suicide
I’m so thankful that Globe Telecom created Hopeline 2919 in 2012. It’s a 24/7 toll-free prevention hotline that gives phone-based suicide-prevention counseling. In its first year alone, 14,000 calls have been received and most of the calls were related to issues on depression, suicidal thoughts, and relationship problems.
I think Hopelinee 2919 is a great campaign that we everyone should be aware about. Depression may be a serious illness but it is treatable and the sooner we find out about friends or family members who are suffering from it, the better.
It’s nice to know that Globe Telecom continues to support the DOH in promoting mental health awareness in the Philippines.