Youth, Technology And Depression

Tec

Since I became computer savvy and started using it, this opened vistas of knowledge to me but simultaneously I start thinking that this is taking me away from the social interactions, which remained part and parcel of human being since the time immemorial. I always contemplated that the generation which is growing up now particularly after 1990’s, may not be able to inculcate the feeling of closeness we have with our relatives, peers etc.

In my curiosity I found a article which says that in which study from Sweden concluded its result as ” in young women, high combined use of computer and mobile phone at baseline was associated with increased risk of reporting prolonged stress and symptoms of depression at follow-up, and number of short message service (SMS) messages per day was associated with prolonged stress. Also online chatting was associated with prolonged stress, and e-mailing and online chatting were associated with symptoms of depression, while Internet surfing increased the risk of developing sleep disturbances. And for young men, number of mobile phone calls and SMS messages per day were associated with sleep disturbances. SMS use was also associated with symptoms of depression. The findings suggest that “Internet and Communication Technology” may have an impact on psychological health, although causal mechanisms are unclear”. (Sara Thomée, 2007).

Thus I found a research which took me further in my thought with concrete results depicting how this technology is taking away not only from social interactions but also leading to more complex psychological problems. My further quest in this area led me in finding another piece of literature with the caption of “Technology Leads to Anxiety and Depression” which  shows basically that being on facebook for a long time could cause depression. Also people get depressed because they stress things they can’t control for example internet not working , phone frozen , etc. Another reason that technology could cause depression because every time a brand new a piece of technology comes out the people have to learn how to use it. Also because some people feel kind of stupid when new technology comes out. According to Dr. Stephen Westmoreland, a Psychologist in Tyler who says, “even with new technology to make life easier, stress has sky rocketed over the years.”  because when everyone gets a new technology they have to go through a tutorial of how to use it and not knowing how to use something you own could become stressful and cause depression. (Shamoon, 2009)

From all the information I learned that technology got its positive and negatives sides. The positive thing is advancing how we do things now  days, but the negatives are that its stressful situations which sometimes comes and which we don’t realize. Computer savvy youth must remain aware of these unforeseen consequences and must recognize the importance of real social interactions, which are innate part of human nature.

Ref:

Sara Thomée, M. E. (2007, May). Prevalnce of precieved stress, symptoms of depression and sleep disturbances in relation to information and communication technology use amongyoung adults. Computers in Human Behavior, 23(3), Pages 1300-132.

Shamoon, E. (2009, February 4). Technology leads to anxiety and depression. Retrieved from engadget: http://www.switched.com/2009/02/04/technology-leads-to-anxiety-and-depression-studies-show/

#LetsTalkD#Youth#Depression#Technology#Internet

Caregiver Depression

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‘It was March 26th, a lovely early spring day of my freshman year. Everyone was hyped about the end of winter but I felt it was all the same. I was walking home after a long day at university. I had 3 assignments due in 2 days but I knew they wont take a lot of time if I was time efficient. I have to get started as soon as I get home. As soon as I opened the door to the townhouse I share with my parents, my mom called “Are you there?” “Yes, mom.” I grudgingly replied. “I need your help with stuff in the basement, then fix your dad’s apnea machine, and take out the trash. Don’t forget to eat your dinner like yesterday, you are turning into a stick.” “Sure, mom” I responded. I did that, had lunch and was heading up to my room when i heard my mom crying the kitchen. She had been depressed for a while and it became common seeing her cry. “What is it mom?” I asked. “I just want to be left alone, no one helps me anyway so I might just as well stay alone.” “I’m here mom and I want to help, what can I do?” “Nothing, just leave me alone!” It was hard ignoring the negativity and helplessness I felt towards my mom’s illness. I really didn’t know what to do but I felt down myself lately. I went to my room and checked my emails, and found out 2 assignments were out. I hurriedly checked them and was disappointed with the marks I got. I bet this would upset my mom even more. I knew university is different and expected the hardships, but it seemed like it was all overwhelming. I couldn’t concentrate as well as I did and I was finding it difficult asking for help from colleagues. Most if the time I preferred going home, to my room. Even soccer, which was my ultimate outlet, has been off my radar for a while. I think ill just go to sleep.’

This is a story of a 19 year old boy, well on the road for depression. Caring for his depressed mom has taken its toll on him, as it may on many children. From his journal, we can deduce some symptoms of depression already. He was feeling down, helpless towards his mom’s condition, guilty that he would cause her more upset, losing interest, skipping meals and escaping reality by choosing to sleep even though he had lots to do.

As caregivers, we can slip into depression but it doesn’t always have to be this way. Remember, as noble and admirable as it is, caregiving should not take away from our lives, our happiness, and our self-esteem.

To learn more about caregiver depression, please check this link: https://caregiver.org/depression-and-caregiving

~ Faten B., Humans of Depression Representative

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Depression at Workplace

In his classic, “The Prophet,” Khalil Gibran writes: “Always you have been told that work is a curse… But I say to you that when you work you fulfill a part of earth’s furthest dream, assigned to you when that dream was born.”

Unfortunately Kahlil’s words don’t jibe with a new Australian study that found almost one in six cases of depression among working people caused by job stress, that nearly one in five (17 percent) working women suffering from depression attribute their condition to job stress and more than one in eight (13 percent) working men do the same. In the last decade, the number of American workers that say job stress is a major problem in their lives has doubled. In fact, the US Department of Health reported that 70 percent of physical and mental complaints at work are related to stress. Depression ranks among the top three work problems for employee assistance professionals, following only family crisis and stress. A study says in Canada10% of  workforce or 1.4 million people suffer from depression and only 6.5% of those or about 187,500 get appropriate treatment

Depression is one of the most costly health conditions for American employers. Nearly 63% of the $83 billion in total economic costs (including both direct costs of healthcare services and indirect financial costs) associated with depression annually are due to workplace losses. Depression is associated with more than $44 billion per year in lost productivity in the workplace from both absenteeism (workers with depression lose approximately 2.3 days of work per month) and “presenteeism” (workers with depression are often not able to accomplish as many tasks or perform at as high a level as workers without depression).

A huge pile of unfinished work is not the main reason why employees become depressed, concludes an extensive new Danish study. Surprisingly, the study indicates that a heavy workload has no effect on whether or not employees become depressed. Instead, it is the work environment and the feeling of being treated unfairly by the management that has the greatest effect on an employee’s mood.
http://www.beliefnet.com/Wellness/Health/12-Workplace-Depression-Busters

http://www.mooddisordersmanitoba.ca/

http://www.depressioncenter.org/work/depression-and-work/why-should-care/

http://sciencenordic.com/boss-not-workload-causes-workplace-depression

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Seasonal Affective Disorder

Depression is a debilitating chronic illness, and often difficult to treat .When it comes to dealing with seasonal affective disorder — an extreme lethargy and sadness that accompanies the onset of winter. It is known to have a seasonal pattern, with US data suggesting summer and winter peaks

People with this condition lose steam when the days get shorter and the nights longer. Symptoms of seasonal affective disorder include loss of pleasure and energy, feelings of worthlessness, inability to concentrate, and uncontrollable urges to eat sugar and high-carbohydrate foods. The risk factors associated with SAD are female, age, family history and living away from equator. Although they fade with the arrival of spring, seasonal affective disorder can leave you overweight, out of shape, and with strained relationships and employment woes.

Winter depressions, but not summer depressions, have been shown to be responsive to light therapy . Given that vitamin D is widely deficient in Western populations, and that there is a demonstrated association between mood states and seasonality, several studies have investigated the link between vitamin D and depression.

This is especially troublesome for the international students coming new to places like Canada, they must think about developing coping strategies.

Seasonal Effective Disorders- Bring on the light: Michael Craig Miller, M.D.,: Harverd Health Publications; Dec. 2012.

Luiz, C. (2014). Coping with Seasonal Affective Disorder. Psych Central. Retrieved on February 19, 2015, from http://psychcentral.com/lib/coping-with-seasonal-affective-disorder/00020857

http://www.mayoclinic.org/diseases-conditions/seasonal-affective-disorder/basics/risk-factors/con-20021047

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How to prevent the Valentine’s Day blues

120213051345-man-cries-tv-couch-eating-story-topAn excerpt from CNN’s the Chart. For full blog by Anthony Youn, M.D. go to: http://thechart.blogs.cnn.com/2012/02/14/how-to-prevent-the-valentines-day-blues/.

Confession: I hate Valentine’s Day.
But I bet I’m not alone.
Many singles use Valentine’s Day as an excuse to engage in unhealthy behavior, such as drinking and self-medicating, to help them forget the date. Growing up, I was no exception.
As a rail-thin, nerdy teenager, I spent every February 14 alone, drinking a two liter of Orange Crush and watching my favorite movie, “The Karate Kid.” I imagined a parallel between this film and my life: Skinny loser nerd overcomes hideous looks, beats up mean jock kids and earns the love of a cute girl.
In college, my Valentine’s Day tradition consisted of binge drinking and overeating – anything to make me forget that I didn’t have a girlfriend. Not only did these unhealthy habits repel the actual women I wanted to attract, but they caused me to feel even worse the next day.
So how do people escape the pain and loneliness of such a holiday?
Here are a few healthy options I recommend to prevent the Valentine’s Day blues:
1) Exercise. Studies show the endorphins, serotonin, and dopamine released during working out can improve your mood. Not only will you feel better, you’ll look better and be healthier.
2) Volunteer for the needy. Several studies have shown that volunteering for the less fortunate has beneficial effects on mood, health and even life span. These benefits can be instantaneous.
A survey published in Psychology Today describes the “Helper’s High” – an immediate euphoric sensation experienced by over half of volunteer respondents.
3) if you can: Travel somewhere sunny. Nearly 10% of Americans suffer from Seasonal Affective Disorder (SAD), or the winter blues. For many, February is the worst month for SAD. Studies show that sunlight can boost levels of serotonin, counteracting SAD and improving mood.
4) Go to a funny movie. Emotions are contagious. The phenomenon called “emotional contagion” describes the infectious effect that our interactions and surroundings can have on our mood. Watching a humorous movie, reading an enjoyable book, or even taking in a stand-up comedy act will help you stay happy on Valentine’s Day.
5) Adopt a pet from a shelter. Studies show that people with pets live longer, happier and healthier lives. If you’re looking for unconditional love, this is a great way to get it and save a life in the process. Best of all, your pet won’t expect an expensive Valentine’s Day gift.
And remember: the holiday lasts only 24 hours.