Depression has become ubiquitous throughout the world today. More than 3oo million people in different age groups suffer from depression and anxiety. Depression is increasing at an alarming rate with much still being undiagnosed or misdiagnosed.
Depression is found to be more common in women than men. This can be attributed to the hormonal fluctuations women experience throughout their lives especially during menstruation, childbirth and menopause.
Hormonal changes cause changes in mood, quite akin to depression. Some common symptoms of depression are lack of happiness, reduced interest in things which were usually exciting, reduced appetite and insomnia. The causes of depression are associated with genetics, environment and psycho-social factors.
Depression has genetic links, so family history of depression can augment the risk. Other causes are traumatic events like loss of a loved one, financial problems, certain medications, postpartum depression, and substance abuse like drugs and alcohol.
Here is a list of the most depressed countries in the world.
India has a staggering number of people almost 56 million suffering from depression and other anxiety disorders. India has a dearth of qualified mental health professionals. There is just one doctor for every 1,00,000 patients. Many cases of depression in India go unreported and untreated due to the social stigma which is prevalent in many other countries also. This prevents people from seeking help. The suicide rate between the age group of 15-24 is also rising, which is 10.9 for every 1,00,000 people.
China being the most populated country in the world mainly has the young generation struggling to cope with depression and other related issues. According to WHO approximately 92% Chinese people with depression never take professional help because of social stigma only. China’s problem is somewhat akin to India’s.
United States of America
One of the most common mental disorders in America is depression. Almost 6.7 percent of the adult population in America suffers from depression. Although depression is not considered a social stigma in America still people think that depression can be overcome without any help. In America also there is a shortage of mental health professionals.
Brazil has the highest rate of depression in Latin America with approximately 4.4 percent of its adult population suffering from it. Brazilian women outnumber their male counterparts when it comes to depression and anxiety disorders.
In Indonesia also social stigma surrounding depression refrains people suffering from depression from seeking medical help. Like many other Asian countries here also there is a shortage of mental health professional seeking assistance. Approximately 9 million people in Indonesia suffer from depression.
According to WHO 5.5 percent of Russian population has depression. Russians are considered more susceptible to depression with suicide being a major issue. Suicide among teenagers is also on the rise in Russia and is three times more than the world average.
Pakistan has a serious shortage of doctors for people suffering from various mental disorders including depression. As per reports one-third of the population in Pakistan endures depression and anxiety related issues. In Pakistan also people feel reluctant to seek professional help.
There are myriads of reasons due to which many people around the world are struggling to cope with depression. In many lower income countries depression is considered synonymous with “madness” and is a taboo. This is the main reason why so many cases of depression go unreported. In these countries the data is sparse and there is less treatment for mental health disorders like depression, anxiety and insomnia.