How to support a loved one who has depression

Director General of the World Health Organization Margaret Chan speaks during the opening ceremony of the 9th Global Conference on Health Promotion in Shanghai

According to WHO, India has the highest suicide rate among 10 South-East Asian countries and depression is one of the leading causes for this. This commitment is shared by all health partners in Qatar, whose efforts underpin this year's WHO World Health Day slogan: "Depression: let's talk".

No wonder then that the World Health Day on 7 April provides everybody -depressed or not- with a special opportunity to mobilise action around a specific health topic of concern to people all over the world. It was first celebrated worldwide in the year 1950 as the World Health Day.

Depression is a mental disorder that commonly occurs in people with stress, those that have experienced psychological trauma in daily life with family members or social connections or after they have suffered from other illnesses, affecting their physical health and ability to study and work, according to WHO.

Suicide is the second-largest cause of death for people between the ages of 15 to 29.

Depression affects almost 86 million people in WHO Southeast Asia Region and if left untreated, in its most severe form can lead to suicide. The above underscores the importance of overcoming this challenge. For those age 35 to 54, it's the fourth leading cause of death, and it remains in the top 10 causes of death for those age 55 to 64.

Each video showcases people with mental health issues as they talk about how acknowledging their condition helped them learn to accept and manage it.

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WHD 2017 is the highlight of a year-long campaign which seeks to raise awareness of depression and encourage those who are suffering with it to seek and get help. We also shall continue to strive towards the promotion of healthier standards of living and the implementation of programmes that enhance health indices of the society, particularly those of youth.

Depression can lead to an increased risk of substance abuse, as well as conditions like diabetes and health disease.

The World Health Day this year focuses on "depression".

Are you feeling low and depressed?

The National Institute of Mental Health defines depression (major depressive disorder or clinical depression) as a common but serious mood disorder. Between 2005 and 2015 the global number increased by over 18%.

World Health Organization says people who suffer from depression do not seek treatment because of lack of support and the fear of stigma, so there is a need to address issues around prejudice and discrimination.

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