Depression is not just your average, everyday ups and downs; it is a serious illness that can affect anybody, at any age. Depression occurs frequently in about 5% of adolescents in the general population, and it is the world’s number one psychological disorder. Research shows that chemical imbalances in the brain cause depression, however, the symptoms of depression can be relieved quickly with psychological therapies and medications. To be successful in the treatment of depression I believe we need to find that balance between both medicinal and non-medicinal methods of treatment, and to do so we need to remember that there are varying levels of severity, as well as different types of depression, and that no two are exactly the same. First, I think it is important to understand the effect depression has on the family unit. The inability to have any type of control over one's thoughts and, at times, actions, can leave one with feelings of alienation and hopelessness. The family is also subject to the same thoughts and feelings as well, because they too are trying to find a way to “fix” you. You resent their treatment ideas and antidotes and believe them to be a hindrance, while they see them as that helping hand you so desperately need. It is at this time that the confused parties involved begin butting heads about an illness neither one understands. By the time there is some semblance of understanding, there has already been major damage done to the family structure. Secondly, I believe it’s imperative for the education and treatment of all parties involved to begin immediately. The damage to the family unit does not have to be permanent, and the more everyone becomes educated and open-minded to different methods of treatment, the stronger the relationships can become. Just as depression can progressively worsen when it is ignored, the healing of the family can also be stifled unless everyone...
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