The Truth about Depression

The Truth about Depression

2013, Health  -   128 Comments
Ratings: 7.35/10 from 145 users.

Only someone who has had it knows how paralyzing depression can be. No one is immune. There's a one in four chance that depression will affect you at some stage in your life. It's bad enough to get it, but the stigma can make you feel much worse. This is the truth about depression.

People battle with chronic depression for decades. It is extraordinary that thousands of us will suffer from depression and yet so many people will feel the need to hide it. Why? Because of the stigma. People with depression are judged to be weak. Some people even go so far as they think it does not exist. Stephen Nolan wanted to find out the real truth about depression.

For those not able to see their depression as an illness it is really important to show what is actually happening inside their head. Examining the brain through imaging is a relatively new area of science. It's only been studied over the past 15 years or so. Nolan has come to the University of Manchester, one of the main centers in the UK for brain imaging.

The part of the brain responsible for memory and emotion is the hippocampus. It is there that depression shows up. What's fascinating is that hippocampus in depressed people behaves differently than the hippocampus in those with without the illness. Professor Ian Anderson is leading the research.

But, there's been quite a number of studies which have suggested that people who are depressed don't just have an alteration of how the brain's working but also actually in the structure of the brain. As Anderson studied the hippocampus he found a striking decrease in the massive gray matter in people who are depressed. This is about a 25 percent decrease, which is quite a striking and staggering change in fact.

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128 Comments / User Reviews

  1. I have endured severe clinical/chronic depression since my early 20's, I'm now in my late 30's. At the time I thought it was the ending of a relationship that "caused" it but looking back, there were symptoms well before that. I thought for a while that I could learn to recognise the symptoms and thought/behavioural patterns and have some control over it that way but in truth, it has only gotten worse and I am certain it will kill me eventually in one way or another. I tried medication at first but the side effects were so bad I stopped taking them and refused to try any others. EffexorXR was the drug I was given, a very high dosage. They made me emotionally numb, unable to concentrate and made my temper unpredictably explosive when I forgot to take them. I lost my job because I couldnt stay focused, and I believe they had a permanent effect on my metabolism too as they caused me to sweat really bad back then and I still sweat excessively now.
    There have been times where I have been somewhat better and able to hold down a job and even make new friends but I always end up alienating myself subconsciously and then eventually it becomes awkward to contact people so I dont. After repeated refusals to attend social events people stop inviting you anyway,
    This condition has turned me into a mere shell of my former self, it has ravaged my confidence and self esteem and has made me bitter, peeimistic, nihilistic and just so damn cynical of everything. Barely a day goes by that I dont just wish for death, even on a good day. I get home from a concert and within hours I'm thinking about dying. I'll think about the future then later think there isn't one. All in a day.
    I dont even know if Im still alive because I still have some kind of subconscious hope, or if its just to spare my family from having to find my corpse.

    1. you sound just like me until I discovered that a small dose of cannabis cured me of all symptoms and now I am completely free of depression and lead a wonderful life whereas before I was always on the brink of suicide.

    2. I feel a lot like u my friend, I'm 45 & found out about 3 yrs ago that I suffer from bipolar depression. Was always very active & positive when I was much younger, very outgoing had more friends than I could count. Got in a decently bad car accident with a friend who was driving stupid on our way to work no less. Before that was avid mtn bike rider, rode between 40 to 50 miles a day while working full time. Had also started mtn bike racing, cracked my sternum badly & almost had to have my spline removed. Couldn't ride anymore for a yr or more & couldn't work. I had never taken a prescription pill bfor that, I ruined almost 2 decades of my life. After that wreck I fell straight into a depression & the worst part is I didn't even realize it. I had never been depressed myself, plus as long as I had some meds I just carried on like a idiot. It took me yrs bfor I realized I was self medicating for depression. My wife & I split when I was 35, it f***** me up in many ways. We had a son who was 9 yrs old at the time, he was pretty much the only thing that made me smile or carry on. Was used to being with him everyday, if I had a gun back then I deff wouldn't be here. That was about 11 yrs ago, over the last 6 or so yrs my personality & has done a complete 180. I don't really have any friends anymore, not like physical ppl I go hang out with or anything. I got off the pills when I was 40, my depression has basically paralyzed me. I'm sorry I talked all this sh*t my friend, I just know exactly how u feel at least in ur words. I haven't worked a even somewhat steady job in almost 3 yrs. I thought I would be dead several yrs ago actually, I quit taking care of myself many yrs ago. I don't look at myself in the mirror often, when I do I obviously hate what I see. I have finally put myself in a position where I can even attempt to maybe hopefully find a medication that may help. It's been almost 4 months & so far no luck with the bipolar depression. The anxiety I can deal with, well the majority of the time I should say. Had to try for help bc suicide was dominating my thoughts so so damn much. This medicine called Depakote has really helped me with that so I'm grateful for that. My son is 20 now, he unfortunately has some depression & very bad anxiety issues. Well my name is Aaron, if anyone actually reads this & u would like to talk or whatever I'm gonna leave my email. **** Depression!!!!

  2. The brain is a major body organ just like the heart, kidneys, liver, etc are. It has the capability to have a variety malfunctions just as any other major organ can. This documentary does a great job of describing what is physiologically different in a depressed brain and also the struggles and suffering of actual people who are living with this debilitating disease. As soon as our society acknowledges the brain as a major organ and not some nebulous mush of emotion, the sooner medicine will have the money to devote to brain illnesses just as they have heart disease and cancer. This needs to be a priority and needs to be properly funded. Too many people are suffering, dying, and many are suffering in silence. I pray the brain gets the medical attention it deserves and all the people with brain illnesses get the best treatment possible.

  3. just a thought, what would you do if you were on a island all by yourself an you had nothing or no one , an you got depression or bipolar or anxiety attack , what would you do ?

    1. I live that way now, without the pleasure of an island. You don't "catch" anxiety, bi-polar disorder or depression. Much love and endurance all. You aren't alone. Hi πŸ‘‹πŸ½ lol

  4. As I former severely depression person and naturopath i can confidently say that if you suffer from mental health eliminate gluten/dairy completely and get checked for food sensitivies and avoid all sensitives and your anxiety/depression will vanish! God bless all the sufferers out there with this beyond delibitaing mind disease! Your body is telling you it doesn't like something, listen to it ;)

  5. Lari and Lenny, you two are right on the money. Lari, I agree with the feeling of being blindsided by depression and it's debilitating effects. When you're in it, there's very little you can do. However, when I'm feeling better, it's easier to see that the self defeating thoughts are manipulative and controlling. Not just of myself, but also others. If you can recognize that you are making the choice to be a total ***hole in order to have a sense of control, it's easier to keep from falling into the depressive episode in the first place, and it may be easier to get out.

  6. I slowly fell into a place of nothingness
    it was not sad or gentle nor despair
    that is what made it so insidious... so complete
    I slowly lost all I was before until...
    I didn't care if I took that next breath
    and I opened my hand and it all fell away
    leaving me in a place i still fear today
    I would watch the light from the blinds come and fade
    and I tried to remember who I had been
    before...before I disappeared
    you who read this and shudder in the telling
    you know what the beast of depression smells of
    as for the rest who wax and wane and profess
    to know...I am happy you don't
    depression can kill you...not all at once
    but in the end it will prevail

    1. I really relate to that and find it very beautiful. Thank you for sharing. My personality traits are screaming to tell you there is hope!! Although, i don't feel it myself. But i do for others. Truly! So let's just say we're stuck here together β˜ΊπŸ’•πŸ‘ŠπŸ½πŸ€— much love and light!

  7. This goes out to anyone who has or has had depression:

    Having lived most of my adult life with extreme depression on and off, then being diagnosed with bipolar, i was faced with a massive choice, take the meds, or the other, a choice i gave myself, which was to set off an adventure that would change my perspective of this state of mind forever.
    I chose the latter...
    I found myself in India studying the ancient techniques of yoga, from there i went on to learn in great depths different dietic lifestyles used around the world, in other words, how to use food as medicine, for example veganism, macrobiotics, juicing.

    I now run a business centered around all i learnt, and help others too.

    It sounds like a lot, and i certainly went the long way around, but talking from experience, simply combining my daily yoga and or meditation, as well as a good diet and active lifestyle has turned me into someone completely different, the problem does not control me anymore, now im in control.

    Now im living a succesful life, i have a family, and im actually happy, for the first time, i can focus on the things that matter, and i have energy.

    I guess what im trying to say, is that only by sheer logic alone using the meds can only mask the problem, it will never truly leave you until you face it, and deal with it.
    Sounds so easy, but it was the hardest thing i ever did, but there is never a day i look back with regret.

    I believe with depression we have the power to change things, i believe its mainly a result of an unnatural environment as well as unnatural pressures in this busy new world we live in, but of course there are other reasons.
    Its seems almost like a coping mechanism gone wrong, we should all approach the problem openly, without stigma.

  8. 19:08 Excellent! Will resume watching at a later time.

  9. I had 30 years of depression starting age 14. What cured it overnight was when i reached a dosage of two grains of Armour Thyroid--non synthetic thyroid medication. Anyone with depression should read the classic book on hypothyroidism by Broda Barnes, MD. Forget the blood test; take your basal temperature by shaking down a thermometer and leaving it by your bed; first thing in the morning, while still in bed, place thermometer in armpit for ? minutes; if the temperature is below 97.8 you are hypothyroid, regardless of blood test. Search online Broda Barnes, MD, and find a holistic doctor who follows the Barnes protocol; your regular orthodox MD will not go along with this; DR BARNES WAS RIGHT and could save your life.

    1. Indeed!!! And they are supposed to start with the physical! But the system is a mess (before Covid-19, yes i know I'm responding years later lol) they can't find a quick answer, you can easily fall through the cracks, left to suffer. We must be our own advocates, research, study, (easy when depressed right? Lol) doctors do not know all. Thank you for sharing this information. There's other books out there as well. The thyroid is key to check. Much gratitude, light and love. One*

  10. I didn't watch the video yet. I'm betting poor diet which means malnutrition, was never mentioned as a possible culprit for depression, just like it's never suggested that violent criminal types very often have abysmal or non-existent nutritional foods and high in sugar. Ever notice how depressed people tend to use drugs, alcohol, cigarettes, and eat junk food regularly; and violent types drink and eat sugar heavy foods and simple starchy garbage.
    People must learn we are what we eat.
    And most diseases, even autism and alzheimer's, can improve with proper and consistent nourishment.

    1. Thanks for you valued input.. Dr...??

    2. Ever noticed how murderers kill people.........with proper nutrition we good stamp this behaviour out.... get a clue

    3. I feel you, didn't bother to even watch the vid

    4. They did touch on guards against depression which involved nutrition and exercise. Way to avoid information that contradicts your preconceived notions.

    5. Well put!!!

  11. I suffered from depression for almost 4 years, losing the best part of my young adult life. I went from spending hundreds on just a belt to not spending a dime on new clothes for years, life is funny like that.

  12. I renounce ssri's as a good treatment for depression. Making a depressed person into a zombie is not an acceptable cure, though so many doctors seem to think that it is. Richard Baxter from the 1600's was way ahead of our current knowledge on depression. See his treatise on melancholy. For that matter, many Puritans have treated melancholy with Scripture properly interpreted. Read any one of them and you will do much better than if you rely on a documentary like this one.

    1. SSRI's in no way make someone a zombie unless they are taking a way too high dose. You should be perfectly fine and alert on SSRI's.

      You are thinking of Benzodiazepines.

      Thinking anyone in the 1600's or scripture can heal depression is like saying reading descartes or the quran will heal schizophrenia. Its wrong and its harmful.

    2. You're probably on ssri's yourself, in which case you are not open to them being bad for you. Or, you know people who are on them and you are in denial about the harm you advocate. Or, you are a doctor making money off your prescriptions. I did not say that Puritans healed depression, but that they treated it. God did the healing. As for the Koran, it is more destructive than healing.

    3. Everything you just said is an assumption JUST like your assumption that SSRI's make people zombies. You are making assumptions based on complete ignorance.

      your claim that god healed anything is equally ignorant. you might as well say fairies make the flowers grow. it is baseless and has no way to be proven.

      you also have never read the quran. You dont know what it says and doesnt say, so again you are making more assumptions based in ignorance. I really hope you grow up one day.

    4. I have grown up enough, not only to read the Koran, but to write about it too. See my ebook on Amazon called 'A Peek at the Koran.' So much for accusing someone of making assumptions, eh? I take it you are into Epicurianism? Good luck getting healed or saved by that!

    5. So you've cast your bias into book form? Congratulations! And you ARE nevertheless making assumptions... Several years ago my panic disorder cropped up again, and ever since then I've been taking a moderate dose of Paxil (20mg daily, at night) with no ill effects at all, other than a mild sexual side-effect which has since gone away, but which, I might add, my wife rather enjoyed while it lasted. For someone who believes as you do, why would it be so hard to believe that if God made man, then the ingenuity man has was given by God in part in order to devise treatments like this? Why is that, evidently, such a threat?

    6. You need to inform yourself on what ssri's do to your brain. The ill effect that you suffer is this: you don't realize that you are becoming, or have become, a non-thinking zombie. I know a man on paxil. It has ruined him. He can't even hold down a conversation now. The same thing will happen to you if you don't face your depression the old-fashioned way: without synthetics and by thoughtful meditation. You will probably refuse to listen to me because paxil has too ill-affected you already.

    7. I don't have depression, I have panic disorder, which a low dose of Paxil helps ameliorate just fine. I DO understand that it would be unwise not to titrate the dose down once I'm ready to discontinue it, but, other than being careful to do that, I think the danger is pretty minimal for those who have a good doctor and who are willing to follow that doctor's instructions faithfully.

      I notice you didn't answer my question, and I'm wondering why that is. Should I construe this as zombie-like behavior?

    8. God does use modern treatments. Maybe a low dose of that drug is okay. My apologies. But please ask your friends, periodically, who are not on the drug, to tell you how your mind is functioning. I really do not want anyone to have their motivation and reason taken away. Doctors, generally, are over prescribing consequential pills.

    9. I would agree with the over-prescribing of certain medicines, particularly pain-killers and benzos. A lot of people end up addicted to them by accident, or only want them for the buzz to begin with, anyway. My doctor and I tried several SSRI's before finding one that worked, and I have been very careful only to take the smallest effective dose exactly as he prescribed, as I'm not unaware that it IS possible to get into trouble with Paxil, even though it doesn't immediately make you "just feel good" like some others; there is no buzz to it at all, that isn't the way it works. Honestly, I am just a bit worried about discontinuing it, because I've read about some people having a lot of difficulty coming off of it, but apparently most of those people were on much higher dosages than I am and did not titrate down properly.

    10. Well, yes, do not discontinue a drug just because someone on the internet says so. I just want you to keep a close watch on your mind. I'm glad we have come to some kind of resolution and agreement.

    11. Well, I appreciate it. Obviously, you are a compassionate person, and that counts for a lot in my book.

    12. Okay, godspeed on your health.

    13. have to agree on that one. i know 2 guys who were doing better before they took the medicine. theyre still on it, theyll never get off it.
      i dont know of anyone whom it helped.

    14. So who published this book of yours? Am I to just believe that you read the Quran and gave it the same standard of evidence you apply to the bible and then wrote a book about it that can only be found on amazon? Not impressed.

      My point is not to defend the Quran because i find it as pathetic as the bible. But you calling it more destructive than healing but thinking your own religious book is any better is laughable.

    15. Are you saying melancholy is the same as depression?!?!

    16. Yes I am, and if you had any historical knowledge of the subject and less attitude, you would know this and you would have left out your exclamation points and question marks.

    17. I checked the treatise on melancholy from Richard Baxter.
      Here is an excerpt :
      "Demonic Causes of Depression
      From all this it is easy to gather, 1. That for Satan to possess
      the body is no certain sign of a graceless state, nor will this
      condemn the soul of any, if the soul itself be not possessed. 2. Satan's possession of an ungodly soul is the miserable case, which is a thousand times worse than his possessing of the body; but every corruption or sin is not such a possession, for no man is perfect without sin.
      We deny not but Satan hath a great hand in the case of such melancholy persons; for,
      1. His temptations caused the sin which God corrects them for.
      2. His execution usually is a cause of the distemper of the body.
      And one of the most common causes is sinful impatience, discontents, and cares, proceeding from a sinful love of some bodily interest, and from a lack of sufficient submission to the will of God, and trust in him, and taking heaven for a satisfying portion"

      You call that way ahead of our current knowledge?!?!?!

    18. Yes, that is way ahead of our current knowledge. Judging by your remarks, you may not be depressed, but you certainly must be a child of the devil. Every single non-Christian is a child of Satan, spiritually, not biologically.

    19. Child of the Devil is about as laughable as the Son of God but at least a bit more interesting. Grow up child and put your fanciful fairies away, they’re not relevant to the subject. Dirty and disease ridden dogma has no place in healthy society. However, if you want to demonize depression, keep saying it’s just melancholy!!!??? For Chrissakes!!!!

      The Crucified One

    20. If you say so it must be true. We should return to the traditional knowledge : good old bleeding and leeches, burning at the stakes, inquisition and witch hunts. Good old times when Christian religious knowledge was supreme. Who needs medical science when reading scriptures and prayers can cure everything.

    21. To charge Christianity with the extremes that were committed by the world generally, the RC church particularly, and the Puritans hardly, does no damage to the truth at all.

    22. You must mean your "truth" of a "good" Christian that sees Satan in all that aren't part of his religion and inside depressive people.

    23. Yeah right, The Puritans hardly hunted witches in Salem...

    24. So all children born into a Muslim family, a Jewish family, and a Buddhist family are spiritually a "Child of Satan"? Those mean little minions of evil. .............................................................................. Just because a soul happens to be born into a different religion? You know, that means that there are statistically about 5 BILLION "Children of Satan" on Earth. And considering not all Christians are true followers, I'd add about another half a billion (at least). ................................................................................. With so many "Children of Satan" living in the same planet as you... you must feel LIKE IN HELL.

    25. The Puritans burned innocent women and children for the crime of being 'witches'! I don't think we should use them as an example for anything, let alone what they did for the easing of depression. Get real, friend.

    26. Bible readers, believers, those who study the Bible, still suffer from depression, bipolar, anxiety ect... Don't think God doesn't care or love you because you struggle with these things! It can be great for people! But believers still have legitimate issues, and that does not take away from their faith or devotion! πŸ’žπŸ™πŸ½βœŒπŸ½πŸ’ͺπŸ½πŸ€—

    27. Got it, she's trying to sell a book. Not engage in production discussion. Be well gab. You're in my prayers.

    28. Seem we should support each other,not argue. Although Gab, you're being cruel and pushy and rude. I'm possesed!?!? I wish you would stop. There are extremely legitimate, valid,factual data in the comments on here to you. A closed mind is doomed. It crushes the soul. I never want to stop learning!
      No one knows the ONE answer to it all! We DO know that kindness, love and support help a great deal and save lives. Lets try that. Love, peace, endurance and respect all! 😊 One*

  13. Whoa... well-good!

    We kinda' agree in that peeps who are depressed should sort it out with jogging or joining band instead of anti-depressants, which can only add more layers of BS!

  14. ok i've deleted my opinion because i dont want to offen anyone, if you took it the wrong way then sorry.

    1. Your complete lack of empathy coupled with your total lack of experience explains your simple minded view. For you depression is a weak minded, attention seeking stunt that has come "into fashion" over the last decade or so. God help you that the dark veil never descend on you and find you with no one other than like minded neophytes around you. You will not survive it. Too bad, so sad ... in your words ... "whatever".

    2. An empath you are not!

      A union jack for your profile image? - are you sure you've taken your meds this morning?

    3. I do have empathy, I feel sorry for those who are unwell, I feel sorry for those who work hard to continue to better there life but cant, depression is a state of mind that you need to get out of, not an illness.

      Its more of a mental health problem.

    4. So you'd walk up to a guy in a wheelchair, look at his atrophied lower limbs and say: "Dude, it's just a state of physique, you need to get out of that chair." Because that's kinda what you're saying to a person with clinical depression.

      Oh, and "feeling sorry" for someone is not empathy, it's not even sympathy - it's pity. Empathy is trying to understand someones situation by imagining yourself in their place. Lacking in imagination, or the ability to do this, one may 'feel sorry' for someone, maintaining their ignorance, but patting themselves on the back for feeling something - at a safe distance.

    5. whats your point?

      Actually don't answer as i wont be coming back here.

    6. Horrible analogy with the wheel chair and it being just a state of physique. The only reason depression is classified as an illness or disease is because anything that stops you from functioning normally in life is considered a disease. My Psych told me this by the way, and I believe it. Having said this, depression technically from a scientists point of view is a poor example of a disease. So many people have underlying issues that prevent them from coping with issues that most people cope with easily. Plus depression can be relieved and sometimes cured with therapy, like talking about it and coming to terms with the reasons you are depressed. Next time you see a man with Parkinson disease ask him if his disease can be fixed with some group therapy. Im not at all making light of depression as I have suffered many bouts myself but you must put it in the proper perspective and it can help you conquer your illness. Your not doomed to be miserable but if you believe you wont get better than you probably wont. Good luck. God Bless.

    7. I for the most part agree with you - however -

      when is was in my young thirty's I took one of my friends depression pills i became morbidly depressed! - then some years later i took a downer i forget what it was - I woke up with a panic attack!

      (important to note I have never had a panic attack or been morbidly depressed before these two pills)?

      This causes me to think - "depression" - can and is induced chemically -

      I am not saying it is not also a state of mind - I have been thru that and snapped out of it by scolding myself harshly and reminding myself that i don't have to think like this I Can Change My Thinking -

      I am what one might consider an "A" personality - an early riser and positive for the most part -

      So best left undeclared the reason for someone's depression other then ones own depression and first make sure it's not a Chemical Imbalance - or something like that?

      One could have a chemical imbalance of some kind and not know it?

      Not arguing with you just adding a few things - :-)

    8. i think if you eat healthy, dont eat much junk, remove stuff like aspartame, glutamat and all those heavily discussed chemicals from your diet,

      and youre clean, no meds no drugs,

      you wont have any imbalance in your brain.

      unless you come from a tribe wich lived off one single kind of berries wich are genetically needed..;)

    9. I of course, can't remember what you posted!
      But I don't recall being offended.

  15. I was diagnosed as manic depressive a year or so ago, let me tell you what, DO NOT TELL ANYONE. Everybody treats you different, especially with all the recent violence in the US, if I'm not smiling I must be depressed LOOK OUT go take your meds! If I'm smiling I'm clearly manic and insane and LOOK OUT GO take your meds! I was told the stigma is gone with depression and other mental issues, it is not. Even my family treats me different now, as do the few friends that know. If I could go back I would have chosen suffering silently than being put on a stage and used as a test subject for the latest and greatest drugs from big pharma. Sure they might find one that eventually works with my brain, but what damage is being done by the three drugs they've already tried? I trust doctors and I'm in no way anti-science, but I wish I had just kept my mouth shut.

    1. That's a shame about the reaction your diagnosis received.
      If it's of any comfort to you, lots of people are on meds but never admit to it. You're far from being alone.
      I hope you still have faith in your doctor. If a medication doesn't feel right or the side effects become an issue, don't hesitate to speak up.
      Best of luck to you:)

    2. Even though honesty is good and all, it's totally reasonable to say you were misdiagnosed, and it was just ADHD (which is totally acceptable, whereas BiPolar still has huge stigma as you've experienced.) It's not really lying, since it may even be true - were you to get second opinions on another day (in another mood) you'd be diagnosed with something else.

      Also, if these people can't be open minded enough to respond with a little more compassion and respect, then they don't need to know. Don't stress too much about the drugs you're taking now. Humans are pretty resilient, and OTC drugs can do as much harm... so can pollution and bad food soo... One of the most frustrating things about trying to find the right cocktail or one pill, is the endless trial and error. We're all unique, and every drug affects each person differently, and our body chemistry fluctuates as well, so it can be a LONG journey finding the right blend for balance. Be patient, work at it, and supplement with lifestyle changes, educating yourself, and getting support from others in the same (or similar) boat. :)

  16. I was on antidepressants for years and years.
    Every 4 years or so the horrible dark, nasty thoughts would come creeping back and envelope me in hopeless and relentless despair and loathing for all and everything. Then my doctor would try something new, and I'd be okay for a couple of years.
    Didn't like the side effects, though!
    Finally last Fall when the darkness crept in again, I decided to slowly withdraw myself till I was completely off the merry-go-round. The withdrawals were awful and went on for 2 months at least, but I was determined.
    I'm still a gloomy thing inside my own head now but I've psyched myself into ignoring the negative thoughts and try very hard to enjoy life. Humour and laughter really, really help.
    I try to avoid sad situations that are beyond my control.
    This is difficult because I like to know what's going on in the world. (I know this makes no sense, but that's me.)
    I'm very grateful for what I've got and have to give myself a good talking to every day. (and a big kick in the bum).
    I'm left with a very bad short term memory and it's very hard to focus; but I'm getting by somehow.
    I wouldn't recommend other sufferers try this though, unless they're sure they won't off themselves.

  17. i suffered from depression twice i thought it was going to take me out ! thank god my depression was caused by a situation and all i had to do was remove myself from it,great documentary !

    1. It's so great to know that you realized it was SITUATIONAL depression. :-) AND....that you didn't go forward & "take me out."

      I have clinical depression & have tried once to "take me out." & THANK GOD that He gave me another chance. Actually, God...The Universe...whatever you call your Higher Power if you have one...gave me (& has continued to give me) MANY CHANCES.

    2. god is good !

  18. If you want 2 be normal and healthy. Stop watching news, smoke weed, and drink at least a few glasses of wine

    1. remove the wine and i agree

  19. imo, depression is a normal reaction to living in a world that has become utterly depressing, because of the greed & depravity of mankind. sensitive people experience the isolation of depression the most, while the rest are just too stupid and selfish to care.

    It is no measure of health to be well adjusted to a profoundly sick society β€” Jiddu Krishnamurti

    1. I assure you, it is not normal.

    2. I agree, and have suffered from clinical depression. It's a lifetime struggle of course. Though there is a claim it's genetic/hereditary, I wonder if it's just our sensitive nature that got passed down. My dad was an artist as well as a high performing athlete with high potential, and he took his own life. My story is very similar, yet - I am still here. I love that quote from Krishnamurti. Truth. ~ β€œInsanity -- a perfectly rational adjustment to an insane world.” R.D. Laing

    3. It is hereditary but only to the amount that which you are susceptible to becoming chronically or clinically depressed. They say that your more likely to have an issue with depression if one of your parents struggled with it. The comment you made about it possibly being our sensitive nature passing to us is very interesting. I would think it does play a role in it. The fact that you mention this leads me to wonder if even clinically depressed people start out being depressed from a situation. My depression is always situational but I worry it can lead to clinical because it shapes our outlook on life a little at a time.

    4. i agree, did you know that a person in a depression see's the world and him/herself more accurately.

      How weird is that!

    5. Life becomes far too intense, too pointless and hopeless. Why attempt any actions/ solutions because in the scheme of things, none of it even matters, you know?
      Which is totally ridiculous because it's not as if most sufferers are quadriplegics; or dying with a mouthful of dirt in a famine.
      There's nothing glamorous or sexy about seeing the world this way.
      It's not done on purpose to get attention or pity.
      Your head becomes your worst enemy.
      I'm not going to let this bleakness swallow me up anymore.
      I am so done with it.

    6. I wasn't trying to glamourise depression, if thats what you're getting at.

      I am just pointing to a fact that a lot of people don't realise.

      People think depression is losing touch with reality, when in fact, a lot the time it's staring
      too intensely at reality. Which is why drugging seems to be the preferred treatment.

      I admire people for facing reality. But we all have our limits.

    7. Oh, I'm sorry!
      I was agreeing with your statement.
      I always blather on and on.......

    8. No worries, nice talking to you.

    9. What about very small children and depression?

    10. It sure is a bleak existence. You do have the right attitude though. You must push through this and sometimes it takes a lot of effort which is why it helps to get sick and tired of the process of depression. The roller coaster. Life isnt always easy or fun but its a gift and you will start to feel better if you commit to refusing to dwell on the things that hurt and focus on the things that help. Good luck God Bless.

    11. Thank you! Your words of encouragement are very meaningful to me and I do so appreciate your response.
      Exactly, I'm sick and tired of the disease-chemical imbalance; whatever the heck it is.
      I'm trying:)

    12. Hang in there, it does get easier. Praying for you in Chicago, USA.

    13. Much appreciation, from Ontario, Canada.

    14. By the way I didnt know you were Canadian when I made the other comment. But yes if the survival of my country depended on the destruction of yours then yes. This was a very hypothetical question and wont come to that in our lifetimes. You would do the same.

    15. I would NOT!!!
      I'd live at my camp and burn wood! I'm not going to kill people just to continue a pointless, polluting, convenience and consuming-oriented existence.
      Don't presume to know me and what I'd do if and when my country depletes its fossil fuels.

    16. Thats why your not running your country. Its not just about you or me its about or way of life and I wont run to the woods and let it disappear. Plus I dont have that option.

    17. Its not even an issue because we are developing other energy sources. I wouldnt want to ever be in that position because I dont know what I would really do but I could accept taking Canada if I had to.

    18. Ya know I reached out to offer words of encouragement and your attacking me because of a hypothetical question. You made my answer much easier.

    19. Yes absolutely. Its mainly because when your depressed you reflect and obsess on your life and events that caused your depression. As well as your past when times were better. When you were happy.

  20. After 20 years of shrinks and meds, I can say this - if you take that one little pill every day (and normally you don't need more than one for depression, and if you're being prescribed 4 different anti-depressants you should get another professional opinion) and if you actually LISTEN TO THE WORDS coming out of your therapist's mouth -- instead of using those 40-50 minutes to unload your baggage week after week -- you WILL get better. And I don't mean slightly better. I mean normal, functioning, happy, outgoing and confident.

    Or you can jump on the paranoid conspiracy theorist bandwagon, put your tinfoil hat back on and continue living under that omnipresent black cloud of mental anguish and despair. You know, because shrinks and meds are only making things worse, right? No.. it can't be your fault, after all, you're the victim here, right? You're "sick", right?

    Life does not have to be pitch black, nor do you have to "celebrate" living in darkness. Why would a depressed person celebrate depression, you ask? Simple, it feeds your narcissism. You don't know you're a bit of a narcissist yet. In fact, you probably think you're the exact opposite of a narcissist.

    Wallowing in depression continues to create the illusion that everyone else on this planet is happy except for poor little you, so that this chaotic world will make sense to you because you are a tortured soul. That's why you keep listening to Radiohead and all of that other depressing music. It reenforces what you CHOOSE to feel like. Seriously, the next time you feel like listening to depressing music, put on some cool jazz music instead. See what happens.

    When you are TRULY fed up with feeling depressed, and living the lifestyle of a depressed person -- and realize that it is about perspective, environment and lifestyle as much as it is a medical condition -- you have already won half the battle.

    The second half of the battle is humility. Humility towards yourself, but most importantly, humility towards others. The less you think about yourself, the happier you will be. Help others, listen to others, invite people into your comfort zone.

    And one more thing. Ask yourself the following 2 questions. Am I in good shape? Do I eat healthy most of the time? If the answer to either of those is "no", you are missing out on tools that can literally make you feel and look a thousand times better within a few weeks. Guaranteed. It works like magic.

    There is nothing unique about depression, nor is it a badge of honor. It does not make you special, it is simply a waste of your time.

    1. You make some good points, but you are essentially saying eat well,exercise and you'll "snap out of it" as we heard in the video.

      I disagree with that and what most others are saying here.

    2. WHOA. So you're implying a person afflicted with depression choses to be in that soul sucking place because they want to feel unique? You're comment is pretty condescending. Not all people suffering from this deep malaise are Goth Kids glamourising "darkness" ok? I was/am a pro athlete, a professional circus performer/dancer (Super Fit? - check!) An artist and performer (Creative Outlets/Expression? - Check!) Also a health nut - no smoking, hardly drinking, no habitual drugs, clean diet. (Healthy? Check!) ~ Oh and I volunteer and am inclined to help people naturally... and yet am STILL hit with debilitating depression now and again. So your "Guarantee" is a sham, sorry. If it were that easy, I'd be in perpetual Bliss. I think it's a pretty messed up world - with an insane society that we live in now that causes this mental illness. With information so accessible, where we see oppressions inflicted on others, cruelty practiced daily, an environment in crisis, almost always for profit of some corporation, some war, some materialistic 'need' of an insensitive and insatiable society. For anyone truly 'aware' of the reality of our species - it's potential for "good" and it's horrible failure to even come close to it - Depression is a natural response.

    3. I hear ya, but from your post I can tell that you have a pretty pessimistic view of the world. If you choose to focus on darkness (war, cruelty, global warming, corporate greed, materialism, etc) that is a conscious decision that you make. I'm not saying that people need to deny reality, but see the positive aspects as well so they can balance out all of that negativity.

      Maybe you should watch less news and spend less time on the internet. To me these two things are the biggest triggers of depression.

      Compared to what our parents and grandparents went through (WW1, WW2, Vietnam, Bay of Pigs, Cold War, etc), we don't really have it that bad.

      Corporate greed is nothing new. As bad as things are today, can you really compare things to the Great Depression or the countless economic collapses and famines that have plagued humanity for thousands of years?

      Look at how many billionaires give to charity these days, how many "1%"-ers have signed away their fortunes to charities after they die, how many NGO's and missionary groups are helping poverty stricken places, how much medicine has improved, etc. Instead of watching CNN, watch some TED talks and see how people are proactively making this world a better place.

      Gay marriage is legal. Pot is becoming legal. Scientists are on the verge of cancer and HIV treatments and meds that will save the lives of billions. Technology has never been at a better place than it is right now. Green energy solutions are becoming ubiquitous. People can connect with each other all over the globe. Citizens are taking down tyrants, despots and dictators all over the world. Prosthetic limbs that can feel, stem cell research, DNA cloning, hearing aids and visual aids for the deaf and blind that enable them to hear and see, etc etc etc.

      Heck, we're on the verge of answering the Big Questions and maybe even discovering life in the universe.

      It's okay to empathize with the suffering on this planet, that makes you a solid human being and shows that you have a functioning moral compass and a good heart (and I know you do!) but it is a mistake to ignore the progress, achievements, nobility, kindness, potential, hope and altruism we see on a daily basis.

      The good is as real as the bad ;).

    4. Thanks for your thoughtful response Lenny. Your points are right on the mark. Many of us do recognise all the 'good' in the world and are often moved by little things, like watching a stranger aid another in a busy city moment. Seeing folks pause to help a stranded bird...

      Fully aware of how fortunate we are, (I'm in Canada, so consider myself lucky - and even daunted at times - to be able to choose a life I would like to work toward.) I'm actually an optimist who gets blindsided by depressive episodes, not by watching CNN and focusing on the negative. I don't watch the news at all, and now avoid platforms like Facebook to offset upsetting photos and postings of appalling acts. Quite the opposite really. I certainly do watch TED talks and better yet - engage in positive activities like observing the forests and ocean all around me, being thrilled to see it's wildlife and the changing seasons. Goofing around with pets, music, friends, food... like a 'normal' person may.

      The 'thing' is - when depression hits - it must be a chemical glitch, because it feels like some bad trip that just washes away all hope, motivation and clarity. EVERYTHING loses it's colour, the future becomes hopeless and the mind is magnetically drawn to all the disturbing information already witnessed and stored away.

      As if to 'validate' the sense of despair, thoughts move in a downward spiral that gets ever tighter as they descend toward a black hole where vitality and enthusiasm is obliterated.

      Living with depression means one has to work three (?) times as hard to just maintain, motivate or master much of anything. It's certainly an 'illness' or disability that is hard to see from the outside. Most everyone assumes a walking, talking, confident looking and communicative person is ok, because there's no wheelchair, no cane, no physical impediment to announce an affliction.

      My dad took his own life when I was little. I've fought against the idea it's genetic and worked with almost all natural remedies, CBT, supplements, herbs, acupuncture, meditation, sports, art, etc.. but there's no denying it's a chemical reaction, triggered by something mental, physical or spiritual -who knows? But it's real, and it hobbles anyone who's prone to it, stripping away opportunities, sabotaging success and forcing the 'fighter' to take three stumbling steps back, for every difficult step forward.

      I'm not of the 'victim' mentality, but depression makes one suffer enough to be debilitating. Living in the 'good' moments now, grateful for every pro-active thought, feeling, idea and impulse. There is always a dusty doubt, a fragile fear that this will all be an illusion one morning when I awake with grey clouding my vision and few black dogs nipping at my heels... Thanks for your words.

    5. That was very well written!
      My doctor compared my chemical imbalance which required medication, to a diabetic who needs insulin.
      Funny thing is, I have managed to wean myself off it, at age 52. Something inside my fat head clicked, after 24 years of meds.
      I have created a new mindset lately and though I still suffer severe symptoms, I'm managing to slog through them and get on with things.
      You have a really good attitude and understanding of your situation.
      It was very nice to read your post.

    6. Thanks so much for that. I'm a little defensive in this arena, and often too verbose on the subject, so I really appreciate your kind words. You've also left several supportive and thoughtful comments with others which is so nice to see... This is what this platform is really for, sharing ideas and observations in the hopes to help illustrate experiences for others and ones self. Thanks!

    7. You're very welcome.
      This subject has led to some really insightful and meaningful posts. All the best:)

    8. Thank-You, Thank-You, Thank-You!!!! It HAD to be said!

    9. Thanks Lenny for saying what I THINK sooo many ppl WANT to say but CHOOSE not to for fear they might get a ton of "THUMBS' DOWN'S!/ha)

      And it's so nice to read....from a "civilian" :-) rather than a "clinician" HELP OTHER PEOPLE. Invest in other ppl's time. LISTEN to others. HELP others. The MORE I CAN GET OUT OF MY OWN DAMNED HEAD, THE BETTER. AND THAT USUALLY ONLY HAPPENS WHEN I'M INVESTING MY TIME IN SOMEONE OTHER THAN ME, ME, ME...

      Love your post...

  21. i 'tooled' my depression...helped my written out-put & managed to integrate my affliction instead of combating it!

    1. Good for you, mate! I think that's the only way to live with it, personally. I try to do the same thing.

  22. I really wonder how many people have cured themselves using the traditional anti-depressants..

    1. I don't know if it is truly possible to be 'cured', but I know from personal experience that anti-depressants may alleviate some of the worst symptoms (suicidal urges, for example) while you learn to deal with the issue yourself.

    2. I have the same feeling, anti-depressants are only a short term relief and NOT a cure, once you stop taking them depression can hit you full force again. I guess most people have existential depression that stem from real life problems or other health related problems. If you're isolated, have no money, no friends, no job etc it's inevitable to not have depression.... hence the drugs will only alleviate some of the worst symptoms..

    3. I understand what you're saying but there's a difference between unhappiness and depression. True depression has no relation to the circumstances in your life. It's the result of an imbalance in brain chemistry.

      The right meds will get you out of danger (suicidal ideation, etc.). And even if you're broke and alone, staying fit and eating right mean that when an opportunity comes along, you'll be ready for it.

    4. I know of many, many people who are taking anti depressants and do NOT have any chemical imbalance in the brain, and that's my biggest problem with all of this. They take their pills, still feel bad, and do nothing else. One person, in particular, neglects her child, her house, no exercise for her nor her child, collects a welfare cheque while living with her boyfriend and if you should say something, she will tell you no one is going to make her feel bad for 'dealing with' her depression. I wonder how she is dealing with it by only taking a pill that has done nothing to change her behaviour? If she was a drug addict or an alcoholic and neglecting her kid, she would be judged harshly by society, it seems to me like she has a free pass to do nothing and like I said, she has no brain chemical imbalance. These meds are being over prescribed, just like valium was in the 60's. I wonder if 20-30 years down the road if we are going to see a big rise in brain cancers with all of these manipulations of brain chemistry in people without an actual imbalance?

    5. I agree, antidepressants are overprescribed. People who are weak and self-indulgent find themselves in difficult situations and decide they are depressed. The doctors give them the meds they want. What else can they do? When the meds don't work they try others.

      But that doesn't mean there is no such disorder as depression, and that everyone who claims to be depressed is just feeling sorry for themselves.

    6. Yes, I do believe there are people with chemical imbalances of the brain that need those types of medications, unfortunately, the doctors are over prescribing these meds from everything from back pain to insomnia - I know, because that is what they recommended to me when I suffered from years of back pain and insomnia. Exercise and physio did so much more for my back pain; for my insomnia, well, that came with the aging process, it seems to have worked itself out, although I still wind up with a bout of it now and then, I find not getting to wound up and just surrendering seems to help. Seems like everything is a pill in western medicine.

    7. So far the only thing mood stabilizers and I think they had me on a anti-depressant at one point have done is make my brain feel like it's half asleep, or like there is a fog over my memory, everything takes a tick or two longer to register, emotions seem distant and alien. Every friend I have that knows about my issue took me aside and basically said "We prefer bipolar you compared to this." and since then I've just been debating internally about what my next step is. I couldn't live my life like that, those drugs so far have done nothing but retard my cognitive and emotional abilities.

    8. The first few years I was on antidepressants, I was lifted out of a fog, so to speak, and able to see everything in a clear and concise way. I also possessed a memory like a steel trap. Dark thoughts were banished and forgotten the instant they tried to creep up on me.
      But these positive affects would only last for a couple of years, then it was on to a new medication.
      Years later, there were no positive effects left for me, so I gave up trying new meds and live in a permanent fog. I feel like I have dementia!

    9. I wonder why they don't explore DMT and it's benefits? I went to a traditional healer and participated in an ancient healing ceremony. Enlightening and liberating. I was healed on all levels. Western medicine needs to explore shamanic traditions and quit being so hypocritical. Just my opinion. :)

    10. That was interesting, thank you. I had to look DMT up. I agree that there are alternative treatments out there for some people. Myself included.

    11. There are many, many benefits to shamanic medicine. For example, Ayahuasca is superb, hands down, for overcoming addictions, all addictions, food, drugs, cigarettes, etc. It is also superb in healing both physical, emotional and spiritual ailments, it cannot, however, be used in conjunction with MAO inhibitors (anti-depressants). The ceremony is performed by a healer and the healer's 'icarros' (songs) guide the participant through their altered state of perception, counseling with the healer follows after the session and many insights are often provided. These traditions are often times poo- poo'ed by modern society but they have much value. Also, LSD is now being used to treat the terminally ill which is wonderful as these patients often lose their fear of death after having a session with a trained medical staff member to remain with them to 'guide' them through their 'trip'. The brain is a complicated organ indeed and modern medicine certainly does not know all the answers, it has its place, but it certainly can learn a thing or two from older traditions.

    12. I've never tried DMT, but I did notice, that both times I did mushrooms in my life, for about 3 months afterwards I didn't have any symptoms, both times I even got a job and worked for several months before the BP returned to normal, sadly, I still remember having emotions I was unfamiliar with, the calmness, the non anxiety, it was blissful.

    13. That's very interesting.
      Do you recall the type you used?
      I'm assuming they come in different varieties.

    14. Bob, this is so sad. I know without a doubt you are suffering. I remember years ago they used Librium for Bipolar disease, back then it was called Manic/Depressive Disorder. I do believe you need your meds, but that being said, I know you still suffer; I have a half sister who is Bipolar and it does seem to be a long journey in suffering and loneliness. Before you commit to your next step, I hope you will discuss it with your dr. and hopefully you have a therapist or counselor? The problem with bipolar is, when the depressive turn comes, it is more like a dark and deep, deep pit of despair. My heart goes out to you.

    15. I hope you have a good psychiatrist, hopefully a psychopharmacologist who knows all the meds and has treated many people.

      Bipolar is a classic brain chemistry illness: it has nothing to do with your situation in life. So it makes sense that bipolar people do not respond well to antidepressants. Everything can be going great and I'll be totally miserable, (I'm bipolar2.) After going through the standard antidepressants my shrink prescribed a popular ADHD med: Vyvanse. It's a stimulant that brought my mood up to normal and enabled me to concentrate n whatever I was doing.

      Every case is different and I'm not suggesting you try one drug or another. But I do strongly recommend you see a good psychiatrist. Bipolar is a serious condition but it is treatable. Collaborate with your doc and don't be discouraged.

    16. I think loneliness is a killer, but it's not the same thing as being clinically depressed. A pill can't give you a sense of belonging.
      Depression and withdrawals sure hit me full force when I quit my meds. Took about 2 months to readjust my head!
      Edit: But being clinically depressed can make a person feel utterly alone, even if they are surrounded by loved ones. You just feel isolated and useless to everyone.

    17. I don't believe there has to be an issue to deal with. The video talked about the one lady getting depressed watching a child die. That wouldn't cause depression, IMO. I think Steven stepped on his own point there, that depression is an illness, not sadness.

  23. i once fasted for 14 days, only drinking veg juice i made myself. after about day 10 many wonderful sensations that i had not felt since my youth began to come back, i had some euphoric moments and was aware that i was fully aware of my surroundings, a big deal as i wasn't aware that i was normally so unaware. i had more energy and i was much sharper.... makes you wonder what is in our food.

    point being. we live in a f@ck up western society that will kill you if there's good money in it. how the hell can any correct baseline for diagnosis be drawn with a culture just as sick as it's patients ?

    1. actually it makes me wonder what the effects of starvation are.

      When your body shuts down it floods your brain with endorphins to counter the pain...what you were experiencing was the similar high that people get from autoerotic asphyxiation...and your methods for achieving them were pretty similar too, or at least to me it looks like another form of masturbation.

      I don't even understand what it is you're trying to say...are you denying the existence of depression?

    2. Don't forget that society just gives us what we want.
      Fatty, sugary foods, for as cheap as possible.

      Thats what kills you. Mmmmm, dopemine

  24. I question the choice for the interviewer, he is very monotonous.
    Some interesting bits about experimental treatment like the VNS at 24:37. The accounts from patients are repetitive, I suggest to skip them unless you want to hear how bad they felt.

  25. well...this was depressing!gotta get some snake-oil!

    1. I couldn't watch this because I don't want to fall down into the rabbit hole again!

  26. 20 minutes in, boring, depressing switched it off.