Depression : The Sadness Disease--a Detailed Description

Essay by wruz6High School, 11th gradeA+, July 2004

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In our never-ending quest for happiness in our life, is some of the joy taken away? Have our thoughts for what we always want turned astray? Why has the quest for happiness left us more vulnerable and sad? Are we a society of melancholy people that are all looking for happiness and disappointed with what we find? Leaving us in a state of depression and unstableness. Turning us into not only a society of dismal people, but people that are left spiritless and melancholic? In today's society depression is referred to as the "common cold of the mental health problems." More than 5 percent of Americans have depression, that equates to an astonishing 15 million people. It is said that 1 out of every 6 people has had a "major" depressive episode in their life. It is estimated that it costs the nation a sum of 43 billion dollars a year in medication, lost school days, lost workdays, and professional care for depression.

Tens of thousands of people out of the 15 million attempts to commit suicide because of depression and about 16,000 of those people succeed. Depression loosely defined is a disorder marked by a state of deep and pervasive sadness, dejection and hopelessness, accompanied by feeling of fatigue apathy, and low self-worth (Bourne and Russo 1998 p. A-24). Though that seems like a very comprehensive definition it is characterized by many different symptoms to combine to one effect on the psyche. Depression itself is not only widespread but also associated with many other psychological conditions, with many physical diseases, and most certainly, with social and external factors (Schwartz and Schwartz, 1993, p. 1). There are several major causes of depression that may occur in people. The first causes are the biological causes are thought to be (1) heredity...