Nearly 30% of US high school age students felt sad or hopeless almost every day for two weeks or more, according to the Youth Risk Behavior Survey. This persistent sadness is one of the key signs of depression, and a prompt for parents to take action to help their kids.
It's always when you're late for a meeting that you forget where you put an important document, or when you're rushing the kids off for school that you can't find the car keys. A recent CNN article explored a study, finding a relationship between chronic stress and spatial memory. The stress hormone cortisol is also linked to short-term memory loss in older adults. Researchers are finding information that validates all of our experiences; when we're stressed, we forget things.
BOOK REVIEW: The Depths: The Evolutionary Origins of the Depression Epidemic
by Jonathan Rottenberg; reviewed by Dan Fields
Note: We thank Families for Depression Awareness volunteer Dan Fields for submitting this book review. The content and opinions expressed do not necessarily reflect the position of Families for Depression Awareness. Our Advisory Board counsels us that cases of moderate to severe depression are best treated with medication, talk therapy, or a combination of the two. Lifestyle choices, such as exercise, adequate sleep, and healthy eating, contribute to both physical and mental wellness.
A recent study from Cold Spring Harbor Lab suggests that physical and genetic markers may indicate how prone a person is to long-term depression. The study seems to find biological and physiological evidence for a link between long-term stress, one's ability to cope with stress, and depression.
Families for Depression Awareness is nonprofit organization helping families recognize and cope with depression and bipolar disorder to help people get well and prevent suicides. We do this through our Teen Depression Program and Adult/Workplace Depression Program, our new Care Consultations Service, and by serving as a resource for education and advocacy for families affected by mood disorders.
Time is running out to schedule a free Coping with Stress and Depression Training - we are able to offer this training to workplaces in Massachusetts through June 2014.
Recent studies show that we are susceptible to the stress that other people experience. St. Louis University created a new term to describe this phenomenon: second-hand stress. This refers to the contagious stress and anxiety we feel on behalf of, or because of others. Stressed out co-workers, family members, and friends can cause us to feel second-hand stress. Long-term stress increases the risk of health problems, including depression.
Jordon Edwards is a Families for Depression Awareness (FFDA) volunteer from Idaho. She was featured on our blog back in 2012. We recently caught up with Jordon, now a sophomore in college studying forensic anthropology, to see how she is doing.
Toxic stress describes a continuous, traumatic experience of a young person, in the absence of proper support from an adult, that increases their future risk of mental health issues, while reducing their chances of succeeding in school and work. If a child doesn't get the help needed, their risk of developing long-term mental health problems, including depression, continues to rise through adolescence.
Country singer, David Nail recently made public his 10-year "deep depression" in an interview with People Magazine. By reaching out for help and working out the right treatment plan with a doctor, he is now on the path to wellness.