Extreme Loneliness: A Major Killer
Loneliness has been shown to increase the chances of an early death by 14%, study says
How to Stop feeling Lonely: 6 Easy Steps
Everyone feels lonely sometimes.
Are you suffering from the loneliness bug?
It's important that you don't allow that loneliness to fester and become a source of great sadness. Stay positive and healthy, keep yourself occupied and make sure to maintain a great amount of balance. If all else fails here are some steps that can help you keep those lonely feelings at bay.
Understand that there's is a difference between being lonely and having alone time. Sometimes we all need time to ourselves. Make sure you understand and realize this important distinction. Maybe what you're feeling isn't lonely but a sense of needing or wanting some alone time.
Be content with yourself. People aren't always going to be around all the time and every minute of the day. Take the time and be happy with who you are, whether that means you become involved in a sport, giving back to your community, or just starting a new project.
Step outside of your head. Sometimes being lonely is amplified when we allow ourselves hours to self-reflect and question who we are and what we are doing. Go outside look around, and live in the moment.
Stay open. Don't shut yourself off from everyone in the outside world. If you do feel lonely shutting yourself off will only leave people out and make you feel even more lonely. Keep an open mind and allow people to come and go as they please.
Be a little Selfless. Try getting out of your own head and make time for other people around you. Try not to be so self-obsessed or self-consumed. Take the time to get out of your head and give other some attention and care.
Remain optimistic, but realistic. Sometimes things aren't black and white, and there are a million and one reasons why something may not work out. But don't allow that to dictate your every move and thought, take a moment breathe, and let it go.
Are you lonely? What are you doing to combat it?
Depressed People May Age Faster
New research says the cells of depressed people age more quickly.
Depression affects more than one's mood. A Dutch study conducted on more than 2,000 participants found that depression makes us look physically older because it triggers the aging process in our body cells.
The research, published in Molecular Psychiatry, found that the length of the telomeres (caps that are located at the ends of chromosomes) in depressed people were shorter compared to happy people.
“The most severely and chronically depressed patients had the shortest telomeres,” said lead author Josine Verhoeven, a psychiatric researcher at Amsterdam’s VU University Medical Center.
“Overall, this study provides convincing evidence for the suggestion than an emotional stressful condition, such as MDD, may truly impact on the physical ‘wear and tear’ of a person’s body resulting in accelerated biological aging,” he wrote.
PsychCentral reports on the study, "Shortened telomeres have been linked to a wide variety of health problems, including obesity, heart disease, diabetes, certain types of cancer and mental decline."
Of the 2,400 people surveyed, one-third were depressed, another third had not been depressed recently, and the remaining third said they were happy. Researchers took blood samples of the participants to analyze the signs of cellular aging and found that the greater the extent of depression was, shorter the length of telomeres.
Depression is a major global problem. A recent report from the United Nations' World Health Organization (WHO) has found that clinical depression is one of the leading causes of global disability. According to WHO estimates, approximately 350 million people worldwide have depression, or about four percent of the world’s population. The rate for women, 5.5 percent, was higher than it was for men, 3.2 percent.
Depression affects more than just your mood. Here are the most common physical symptoms of depression (via WebMD)
- Increased aches and pains, which occur in about two out of three people with depression
- Chronic fatigue
- Decreased interest in sex
- Decreased appetite
- Insomnia, lack of deep sleep, or oversleeping
Can Being Depressed Make You Disabled?
Well, this is just sad. After back pain, depression is the next biggest cause of disability across the planet.
A report from the United Nations' World Health Organization (WHO) has found that clinical depression is one of the leading causes of global disability, and it should be a priority to fix this problem.
WHO experts compared depression to 200 other diseases and injuries as a cause of disability and found that only a small percentage of people who suffer from depression have access to proper care. A total of 187 countries, 21 world regions, and 20 different age groups of both sexes were analyzed.
Rates of major depression were highest in Afghanistan and lowest in Japan. The illness is ranked as the top cause of disability in Central America and Central and Southeast Asia.
The rate of global depression has been increasing alongside the growth in population, more unhealthy lifestyles and longer life expectancy. Between 1990 and 2010, the global burden of depression increased by almost 38 percent.
According to WHO estimates, approximately 350 million people worldwide have depression, or about four percent of the world’s population. The rate for women, 5.5 percent, was higher than it was for men, 3.2 percent.
Primary-care doctors "may not be as effective as hoped for matching the right treatments to the right patients in order to improve their symptoms. This could, potentially, lead to worsening symptoms and deeper depression."
In the states, depression is covered by the Americans With Disabilities Act. There is no cure for the illness but it's highly treatable. Healthline.com reports that help from a mental health professional, medications, and lifestyle changes, including a healthy diet and exercise, have all been shown to successfully improve the quality of life for someone with depression.
On The Verge of Depression?
Could coping methods to curb depression be right at our fingertips?
Many professionals now believe that we have the very things we need in order to keep depression at bay. Shelley Carson is one firm believer of this new research. The associate of Harvard University's Department of Psychology and co-author of "Almost Depressed: Is My (or My Loved One's) Unhappiness a Problem?" speaks of research that as many as 12 million people in the United States are possibly suffering from depression not severe enough to receive clinical treatment.
The three golden factors ring true here as much as the do everywhere: exercise, nutrition, and sleep.
When people's depressed states arise, one or more of the factors above is more than likely not being tended to as much as it should. The three of these combined help to combat stress levels and, in turn, cause negative thinking to spontaneously combust with a bit of effort and optimism.
Being 'almost depressed,' is not an official mental disorder, but it is a mental state from which you feel exhausted, de-energized, and unable to savor the goodness of life in general due to your down mood.
On the contrary, full-blown depression is not to be mistaken for this moodiness. The real deal includes symptoms such as thoughts of death or suicide, sudden, substantial weight loss due to lack of appetite, intense hopelessness, and/or extreme guilt. These require seeking help from a mental health professional.
The almost-depressed range, though, has a lot to do with well-being and your everyday company.
The phrase, "in good company," says a lot, and the significance of abiding by it is profound in the way that you become most like those who you surround yourself with, whether you wish to or not.
The scary thought is that 75 percent if ignored cases of this low-grade depression will turn into the full-blown depression that requires clinical help. To avoid that deadly disorder, follow a few simple rules to keep yourself happy and healthy, as cliche as that may sound.
Exercise is not optional. The minimum suggested for treating depression is 30 minutes of aerobic movement plus at 10-minute warmup and cool-down, three times weekly.
Along with exercise, it is a key factor to partake in activities that make you happy. If they start to seem like the pleasure factor has since gone way, still participate. This helps the pleasure center of your brain activate, and as it does, you will soon find pleasure in the things you once found enjoyable. A few examples and suggestions include daily walks, listening to music, shopping, catching a movie, conversing with a friend over coffee or tea, practicing yoga, dancing, reading, and even writing. Whatever it is that always makes, or once made, you happy-- make time for that regularly.
Similar to a few of the suggestions listed above, find a creative way to express yourself and let go of negative feelings and emotions that we all sometimes bottle up. Whether it's painting, writing, sketching, making music, singing, or even kickboxing-- find something that allows you to release tension and let go of that which you wish to no longer hold onto.
A tricky tool is to challenge your thoughts. Moods are often dependent not on that which happens to us, but how we interpret those happenings. Shift your perspective, and challenge yourself to see things in a new light. It's tough at first, but it gets easier with practice and time.
Last but not least, nutrition is so important, as the saying often rings true, "You are what you eat." If the foods you're consuming regularly are nutrient dense, then you most likely aren't going to feel so swell after eating them. Try to aim for more fruits and vegetables, whole grains, fresh juices, high fibers, and lean proteins. These will keep you happy and full, as well as healthy.
Do you think these factors will help you to stay happy?
Can Vitamins Cure Depression?
As one in 10 individuals suffering from depression in the United States alone, natural remedies are more promising than prescription drugs.
From light therapy to massaging and vitamin supplements, the natural alternatives to healing depression are far more safe and suggested than prescription medications.
Many sufferers experience seasonal affective disorder, which can be nixed with light therapy. The mood boost effect of a "light box," especially during the dreary winter months, is worth trying. Numerous studies prove it successful in brightening once-depressed spirits.
While not drastically researched, the American Journal of Psychiatry states that massage therapy contributes to "potentially significant effects" in the realms of relieving depression and anxiety symptoms. Who doesn't love a good, tension-busting massage?
Vitamins like omega-3 and Vitamin D are suggested to help, as well as the herbal supplement, St. John's Wart. Talk therapy is another natural remedy that has shown noteworthy, positive results.
Will you suggest these natural remedies to family and friends or use them yourself?
Can Supplements Treat Depression?
Yes, they can! And these ones are the best.
Over the counter remedies are fine for a cough or a cold, but who knew they could help depression? Studies have shown that omega-3 fatty acids, folate, SAM-e, and St. John’s wort have all shown positive effects in treating those with depression.
Omega-3 fatty acids are now being used to treat children with depression. The supplement was found to help conditions related to depression, like anxiety.
Folate is a B vitamin that was found to have a direct correlation with depression. In population studies, people with depression were more likely to have a folate deficiency.
SAM-e is a messenger for chemicals in the brain. In studies, it has been known to reduce symptoms of depression, particularly in those with HIV and those who are taking prescription antidepressants.
St. John’s wort is a natural supplement that has been most widely researched for its effects on depression. While studies are generally mixed about the benefits of St. John’s wort, the results are still promising. It may very well have a relatively small beneficial effect on depression.
What do you think of supplementing your diet to help treat depression?
Bad drug gone good?
Be Nice and Live Longer
Data shows volunteers have a 20% lower risk of death.
Doing nice things for other people not only makes you feel good, it also helps you live longer.
Volunteers have a 20 percent lower risk of death than those who do not volunteer, according to a new data.
Yes, volunteering improves your mental health by lowering the risk of depression and overall increasing your life satisfaction and well-being.
Researchers said more studies are needed to understand the direct cause between volunteering and heath.
Do you volunteer? Where? Tell us!
Photo Credit: www.trumanproject.org
Depressed? Try Staying at Home
Study shows home therapy has proven to be an affective way to deal with depression.
It's been said that home is where the heart is. It's also where depressed African-Americans are healing.
According to new research, bringing treatment and other help to depressed African Americans in their home helps them battle the condition.
The study showed 64 percent of African Americans showed improvements at the end of four months after receiving home therapy.
Experts say being at home destigmatizes patients and allows people to talk.
Do you receive home therapy for depression or other medical conditions?
Photo Credit: www.in-homecaresanjose.com
Health Q&A: Anxiety, Journaling, and Stress Relief
Marriage and Family Therapist, Yaritza Zayas, MS, answers your questions about anxiety, journaling, and stress relief.
Q: What is journaling and what are the benefits?
A: Journaling is the act of writing down your thoughts on a regular basis. It’s a great way to express your emotions and clear the mind of clutter. Studies have shown that regular journaling not only strengthens the immune system, but it also decreases asthmatic symptoms, helps prevent overeating, and can even help you sleep. Journaling each and every day isn’t necessary, although many people who do journal on a daily basis find it very helpful.
Q: What’s the difference between anxiety and panic attacks?
A: Panic attacks are sudden and extremely intense. Many have described symptoms of a panic attack as being similar to a heart attack. You begin to sweat, become short of breath, and experience intense heart palpitations. The panic typically sets in out of the blue and then goes away relatively quickly. Some attacks may last for more than 10 minutes, while some people experience panic attacks back to back.
Anxiety, on the other hand, is a constant state of worry that can intensify over time. Anxiety can cause restlessness, irritability, weight gain, and trouble sleeping, among other symptoms. Prolonged anxiety can develop into serious medical conditions that impact the heart as well as the digestive system.
Q: How can I relieve stress?
A: It’s very easy to become overwhelmed with work, school, deadlines, bills, and life in general. Here are some quick tips to help you slow down, get organized, and feel a bit more relaxed.
1. Write a List: This will help you prioritize your tasks. Sometimes an errand or project that you think is incredibly important can actually wait a day or two.
2. Organize Your Time: Once you complete your task list you must stick to it! Procrastination can breed stress.
3. Relax: Do something that you simply enjoy--take a nap, write, take photographs, read, go for a walk, sip some coffee, the list is limitless. Whatever you decide to do, remember to use that time to forget about your troubles.
What are your thoughts on journaling?
Yaritza Zayas is the CEO and founder of Buena Vida Coaching, a site focused on empowering Latinas and other minorities on their road to wellness.
Photo Credit: Flickr/marsmet481
Hanging With Grandma can Work Better Than Prozac
A study found that having a relationship with your grandparents decreases your chances of being depressed.
Are You the Next Amanda Bynes?
She may not be the only one suffering from mental illness.
Do Depressed People Miss More Work Days ?
Poor health is a contributing factor.
Photo Credit: drpegonline.com
5 Telling Signs a Man is Depressed
Are your emotions getting in the way of your life?
Depression, by it’s clinical description, is a mood disorder in which feelings of sadness, anger and frustrations interfere with life.
Photo Credit: HealthyBlackMen.org
Are You a Depressed Smoker?
Study links smoking with being emotional.
New Reasons to Lose Weight
Study shows new health benefits to shredding the pounds.
Health Alert: 1 in 5 Children Has A Mental Disorder
New report is the first to show data of children’s mental health.
Attention-deficit disorder, behavior disorders, autism spectrum disorders and substance abuse disorders are just some diseases that are common among children.
This means that about 13 to 20 percent of all the children in the country experience a mental disorder in any given year.
Among the findings, the CDC found that the top five mental diseases among children are: Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD) with 6.8 percent, behavior or conduct problem with 3.5 percent, anxiety with 3.0 percent, depression with 2.1 percent, and autism spectrum disorders with 1.1. percent.
The report states that $247 billion is spent each year on childhood mental disorders. This number increases as the care of them as adults adds up.
This is the first report to show mental disorders among children aged 3 to 17 years. The CDC used different sources and looked at data from 2005 to 2011 to come up with the estimates.
The CDC has resources available for mental health here.
Do you know a child with a mental disorder?
Let’s Talk: Mental Health and Minorities
Join @TheLoop21 on Twitter 5/14 at 1 p.m. EST/10 a.m. PST to discuss the importance of mental health and minorities using #L21Health.
Aristotle once said, “The energy of the mind is the essence of life.”
The mind is what controls everything that we do, in every phase of our lives, at every minute, which is why it is important to keep it healthy.
Nonetheless, school, work, relationships and trying to balance all of the facets of our lives can get in the way of having a healthy mental state.
Last year, ABC News reported that one in five Americans suffer from a mental illness.
Among minorities, the numbers are higher.
According to the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services Office of Minority Health (OHM), African Americans are 20 percent more likes and Hispanics are three times more likely to report a serious psychological distress than Non-Hispanic Whites.
The Office of Minority Health also reports that in 2009, the death rate from suicide for African American men was almost four times that for African American women.
For Hispanics, the death rate from suicide for men is almost five times the rate for Hispanic women, the OHM reports.
Understanding mental health can be tricky, and that is why Loop 21 is here to help.
During the next TweetUp, Loop21 will break down all of the information and tell you everything you need to know about mental health.
Join the conversation on May 14 at 1p.m.ET/10 a.m.PT. The hashtag is #L21Health.
Boost your healthy living by joining this TweetUp! Don’t miss out!
5 Energy Boosting Foods
Because sometimes, we all need an extra kick.
Low levels of energy can affect your workflow, productivity and mood.
Health Alert: Depressive Thinking Can Be Contagious
Research suggest thinking styles can be passed along.
Certain types of depressive thinking is contagious, according to new research published by the Clinical Psychological Science journal. Apparently, emotional states can be passed along.
While some people see depression as a cognitive chemical balance, scientist say social context and personal perspectives of yourself and the world can be critical in causing and sustaining the illness.
"Thinking styles are a really important factor in risk for depression," says the study's lead author Gerald Haeffel, associate professor of clinical psychology at Notre Dame University. "How one thinks about life stress and negative moods is one of the best predictors that we have of future depression."
Recognizing depression affects about 10 percent of college-aged adults, researchers studied the impacts of social settings and thinking styles of a group of about 110 incoming freshmen at a private university in the Midwest. As students transition from the familiarity of high school and family, then venture off to a social environment, the setting served as a real-world laboratory.
Researchers explored two types of thinking which have been linked with depression. The first involved rumination or constant brooding about what's going wrong. They found someone who broods will focus on why they feel sad versus someone who does not brood, as they will tend to distract themselves when they feel sad. The second depressive style that was examined was hopelessness. They discovered it was not contagious among roommates, but rumination was.
Results also showed depression symptoms themselves were not contagious. But, those who picked up on a ruminative style of thinking doubled the number of depressive symptoms of those who either weren't exposed to this perspective or didn't adopt the rumination during the testing period. The risk was magnified if subjects experienced high levels of stress.
The study also found, however, that healthy thinking was also contagious. Subjects who were surrounded by a positive thinking style developed a more positive style themselves.
The study could not determine what made a particular roommate's style more likely to dominate and influence, rather than be influenced.
Get Moving: Just 8 Minutes a Day Can Keep Obese From Depression
A little bit goes a long way
Severely obese people who are physically active even a small amount of time are less likely to suffer from depression than those who are sedentary. A study found that just eight minutes of moderate physical activity each day could reduce the odds of them needing treatment for depression or anxiety by 92 percent. The three-year study examined 850 severely obese patients scheduled to undergo weight-loss surgery; they wore an electronic device on their ankle to track the amount of activity they got and completed a questionnaire to assess their mental health. Though one-third of the participants had symptoms of depression (and two in five had received medication or counseling for it), researchers additionally found that even just 4,750 steps a day (less than half the 10,000 steps recommended for a healthy adult) reduced the odds of depression or anxiety treatment by 81 percent. (Daily Record)
'Coming Out' Good For Your Health, Study Shows
Less stress, signs of depression
For gays, lesbians and bisexuals, leading a "double life" can affect their physical and mental health. A study by McGill University and the University of Montreal found that those who "came out," or disclosed their sexuality, to family, friends and co-workers were psychologically healthier and had lower stress hormone levels and fewer signs of depression than those who were still “in the closet.” Lead author of the study Robert-Paul Juster said, "It seems to be that if you’re using more avoidance coping, and wishful thinking, then you get poorer health.” For those who come out, though, "a rebirth happens that makes them feel much more empowered and conscientious." Similarly, a study from Columbia University last year found that after Massachusetts enacted its same-sex marriage law in 2003, there was a significant drop in medical and mental health care visits incurred by gay men. (NBC News)
Therapy for Suicidal Teenagers Not As Effective As Believed
A majority of troubled adolescents received treatment before attempting suicide
Teenagers who are seeing counselors for bouts of depression and other psychological disorders aren’t getting as much out of it as loved ones and communities hope they are. A new study in the journal JAMA Psychiatry found that 55 percent of suicidal teens had received some therapy before they thought about suicide, planned it or tried to kill themselves. The findings contradict a widely held belief that suicide is due to a lack of treatment. The study was based on nationwide interviews with more than 6,000 teenagers and at least one parent of each. Researchers linked suicidal behavior to a combination of mood disorders, behavioral problems, and alcohol and drug abuse. One in eight teens in the study had persistent suicidal thoughts at some point in their young lives, and about a third of them made a suicide attempt within a year of having the idea. This is the largest nationwide study of suicide in teens and supports similar findings in small, regional samplings. (New York Times)
Do You Have Busy Life Syndrome?
Doctors declare a new epidemic brought on by stress and social media
*cue sad music and concerned voice*
Did you forget to return you friend's phone call? Are you setting alarms on your phone to remind yourself of menial tasks, like taking out the trash or picking up clothes from the dry cleaners?
Have you lost your car keys?
Can't find that last pack of hot sauce from the wings spot?
Do you know where your left shoe is?
You're not alone. Dozens, hundreds and maybe even thousands of people can't find their left shoe and have no idea that it ended up in the trunk of the car they can't find the keys for. But now, finally, after years of suffering, people like you finally have an answer for why they keep forgetting to call people back and pick up that dress shirt.
You may be suffering from Busy Life Syndrome.
What is Busy Life Syndrome you ask?
Well, it's when your already hectic life of working, paying bills, raising children and watching TV gets bombarded with an influx of information from social media, smart phones and the Internet.
Here are some probable symptoms:
You know your neighbor's Twitter handle, but not his real name
Half of your work day is spent TFTing: Twitter, Facebook and Tumblr
You'll send a phone call to voice mail, but will answer a text instantly
Living out the movie "Dude, Where's My Car?" every time you enter a parking lot
“We believe there are widespread signs of the problem,” says Angela Scott-Henderson, spokesperson for CPS Research, the firm who created the term "Busy Life Syndrome." “Our attention spans and concentration levels are going down. It’s getting to be more common, affecting people at younger ages.”
Up until now we've seen studies that have people blaming social media for everything from divorce to spending more. We've even seen cases where social media is said to have negative effects on self-esteem and good manners in general. But now it's being blamed for literally losing your mind?
"What we are referring to should not be confused with the serious memory loss that is often associated with early onset dementia," says CPS Research's Dr. Alan Wade. "This study is aimed at those who are constantly losing their keys, forgetting people's names or misplacing their glasses rather than anything more serious."
While CPS says that their research only sought out to bring closure to people tired of walking into rooms and forgetting why, they aren't quick to say that BLS is a junior form of Alzhiemer's. Research shows that the biggest difference between the two is that a person with BLS realizes that they've forgot something. A person with dementia or Alzhiemer's has no idea they forgot and thinks that everything is ok until someone reminds them.
But, if BLS is a growing concern, the next question to ask is, is there a pill for it like everything else? Of course there is.
Memory pills have been available for years, but just recently they've seen a surge in sales among college students as they prepare for final exams. There have also been reports of doctors trying ADHD medicines on people who complain of memory loss. The doctors at CPS are also conducting more research to see if smaller doses of the Alzhiemer's drug memantine can help treat this disease they've come up with.
"It seems particularly far-fetched to me that this drug would be of any value," says Mayo Clinic neurologist Dr. David Knopman to NBC News. "Memantine is a drug that’s approved for the treatment for moderate to severe Alzheimer's. It’s never been tested on a large scale in normal people."
Sounds like a Chris Rock joke to us...
While "Busy Life Syndrome" could very well be an epidemic, we must realize that the cure may already be in our heads. The key word "busy" tells us all that we need to know.
The cure is shutting up, and sitting your a** down somewhere every once in a while. If you do that, you just may find all of those lost items you've been looking for.
Eating Fruits and Vegetables Make You Happier [study]
Drown your sorrows in a bowl of cherries.
They say an apple a day keeps the doctor away. Apparently it keeps bad moods at bay too.
Economists from Dartmouth University and England are saying that the more fruits and veggies you eat, the happier you become. No, vodka cranberry and Bloody Mary cocktails do not count.
Researchers examined the diets of people who say they are stressed out from work and dissatisfied with life in general.
Eating seven to eight portions of vegetables was more strongly associated with happiness and overall well-being than employment status. On the whole, the paper concluded that well-being peaks at seven daily servings of fruits and vegetables, but the surveys also showed that people who ate just five servings a day (the amount that the USDA recommends) were as happy--or very nearly so--as people who ate higher amounts.
Unhappy? May be time to put down the cigarette and pick up some celery.
Jesse Jackson Jr. Back At Rehab Clinic, Votes Absentee
Ailing congressman won’t hold an election night event, is expected to win reelection
Congressman Jesse Jackson Jr. of Illinois voted by absentee ballot and recently checked himself back into a rehab clinic in Minnesota for treatment. Jackson, the son of civil rights icon Rev. Jesse Jackson, has taken months of medical leave from the House of Representatives to treat bipolar disorder and gastrointestinal problems. There is no indication when he’ll return to work. The 47-year-old House Democrat is up for reelection and hasn’t campaigned beyond a recent robocall to voters. His publicist, Kevin Lampe, says Jackson won’t hold an election night event next week, although he is widely expected to win reelection. (Associated Press)
If You're Depressed, Should You Date?
With 1 in every 20 people suffering from depression, mental health experts say being social can be a part of healing.
Relationships aren't always like a love scene in your favorite romantic comedy. Sometimes they're like the scene in that television drama that made you cry. In extreme cases, it can be like that scene in the horror movie that made you stop what you were doing and leave the room.
For people with depression, navigating a relationship can feel like all three.
Mental Health took center stage this month, with the first week of October devoted to Mental Illness Awareness, and the World Health Organization observing World Mental Health Day Oct. 10. WHO reports that 350 million people suffer from depression globally. With 7 billion people walking on Earth, that means that 1 in every 20 people is depressed, making it very likely that you may suffer from depression or find yourself in a relationship with someone dealing with the symptoms of depression.
While feeling blue after a relationship ends may be a familiar topic, dating while depressed, or dating a person who is depressed, is not always discussed.
"It probably wouldn't want to be the first thing they bring up unless their partner has dealt with that before," says Dr. Samantha Jordan of Atlanta Area Psychological Associates. "But if it's something you really want and see it as long term, then yes be open as possible down the line."
A 2010 report by the Wall Street Journal said that 15 million American adults a year suffer from major depressive disorder. And 6 million Americans have another mental illness, such as schizophrenia, bipolar disorder or other psychotic disorders. But a full 50 percent of people with bipolar disorder and schizophrenia don't believe they are ill and resist seeking help. People with clinical depression are said to resist treatment at similar rates. And when it comes to the African American community, many have a tough time even admitting that they may have a mental illness.
"We actually encourage people with milder forms of depression to get out and be social, and if they are ready, enter a romantic relationship," says Jordan. "It's nothing they have to shy away from."
Those suffering from more severe cases of depression may want to be more cautious.
"I think people who are battling bigger forms may not want to enter a relationship until they deal with their issues and get some treatment for that," says Jordan. "It's similar to people with substance abuse issues, we advise them not to make any major decisions when you're still recovering. We want you to allow yourself time to heal and get skills on how to deal with your issue."