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July 2014 - Happier Human

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Monthly Archives: July 2014
47

Is Depression Really on The Rise?

It’s an idea repeated so often that it’s now taken for fact – depression is on the rise.

If true, modern society has messed up.

In 1985, 10% of people had no one to discuss important matters with. By 2004, that number had grown to 25% – one out of every four people! (1)

We’re spending less time with other people, eating worse food, and getting less exercise, sunlight, and sleep.

Surely the rate of depression has gone up.

My father disagrees.

Normally that wouldn’t mean anything to me – he believes lots of crazy things. But he’s a psychiatrist.

Psychiatrists are the ones who invented the scientific study of mental dysfunction.

The field has problems. But they base many of their beliefs off of empirical evidence, not armchair philosophizing, like what used to be common (think Freud and penis envy).

Psychiatry has insights to offer.

Is the idea that the rise of depression is more media sensationalization than hard journalism one of them?

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