Ten Leading Causes of the Global Burden of Disease Essay

Ten Leading Causes of the Global Burden of Disease Essay

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According to the World Health Organisation, depression ranks 4th among the 10l leading causes of the global burden of disease[1] with about 121 million people worldwide have some form of depression, although less than 25% have access to effective treatment[2].
Almost everyone has experienced depression, at least in its mild and more temporary forms as loss and pain are inevitable parts of life. When individuals suffer from mild cases of depression they may feel sad, apathetic, passive, and discouraged, the future may look miserable and life may not be enjoyable. These reactions are normal as many studies show, however these feelings normally fade away after the event causing it has passed or the individual comes to terms with the situation. Clinical depression is more frequent and symptoms are more intense, and as Oatley and Jenkins explain; the duration of the symptoms are out of proportion to the person’s life situation.[3]

There are many explanations to the cause of depression but in this essay I will discuss the two main explanations in relation to the title; the biological and the psychological explanation. This creates the nature nurture argument, questioning what the cause of depression is. The psychological explanation to depression is that of which suggests it is a symptom of today’s society and can be split into three sub-explanations, the psychodynamic, cognitive and socio-cultural factors.

Freud explains through the psychodynamic model that when a loved one is lost through bereavement, separation or withdrawal of affection, there is a first mourning period and then after a while, life returns to a state of normality. However for some people the mourning period never seems to come to an end and they continue to exist ...


... middle of paper ...


...ypothalumic-pituitary-adrenal axis is a characteristic of the depressed state, particularly as, when the depressive state comes to an end, dexamethasone is again able to suppress cortisol activity,[4] thus supporting the argument of nature being a causing factor of depression.

After researching into both sides of the nature nurture argument of depression, there seems to be a strong argument to prove each side, the main one being that they have effective treatment which is the true test to see if the theory is correct. A recent study by Haeffel suggests that depression may be caused by both nature and nurture. This is an interesting argument that may be more reasonable than putting depression down to one cause. This is because a single explanation would be reductionist as it would not take into consideration other factors that have been found to cause depression.

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