Sie sind auf Seite 1von 10

Running Head: INCREASING INCIDENCE OF DEPRESSION ON AUSTRALIA

INCREASING INCIDENCE OF DEPRESSION IN AUSTRALIA CAUSES AND


TREATMENT

NAME

INSTITUTION

Introduction:

INCREASING INCIDENCE OF DEPRESSION ON AUSTRALIA

Depression is linked with mood ailment which causes a tenacious feeling of being
sad lonely, hopeless and loss of interest in several personal and sociological activities in
life. Unfortunately, depression is More than just a spell of the blues, depression isn't a
weakness and you can't simply "snap out" of it. (Mayo Clinic, 2015) Depressive
disorder or clinical depression can potentially disturbs the thoughts of how you feel, think
and act. Considering this, depression can lead to a pattern of assortment of Psycho-Social
problems.
Furthermore, it can also create mayhem doing normal daily activities and in worse
scenario, it may make one feel that there is no point in continuing to live like this and it is
not worth enough to live in such misery. According to World Health Organization
(WHO)s latest report in 2015 on the global burden of mental health illnesses
Worldwide, nearly 1 in 10 people have a mental health disorder. (Who.int, 2015)
Background:
Depression has long been struggling to tackle the issue of stigma attached to it in
order to be identified at early stage and treated. The ideology in Australia is not much
different to this global issue as the stigma attached to depression is also prevalent in
Australia.
According to an organization working on mental health in Australia, Depression
in Australia carries a stigma often associated as a sign of weakness. (White Cloud
Foundation, 2014). However, this should not be considered the only stigma attached to
depression as there are several other reasons which contribute towards the mental health

INCREASING INCIDENCE OF DEPRESSION ON AUSTRALIA

stigma. For example, lack of awareness, inequalities in health, gender related issues or
lack of trained staff and treatment services.
Scope of the Problem:
Over the last several years, early identifications of mood disorders have seen
outstanding developments. However, the global rise in the depression is still challenging
for the professionals of this field. The World Health Organization (WHO) has predicted
that by 2030, depression will account for the highest level of disability accorded any
physical or mental disorder in the world (WHO, 2008).
Recently, Australia is facing gradual increase in the incidence of the depression
which is affecting 20 % of adults either directly or indirectly during their lifetime with
almost twice as many women diagnosed with the disorder compared to men.(Vijaya
Manicavasagar, 2014) Additionally, it is also noted that in some cases depression gets
transferred from one generation to the next in families.
Also, as the depression advances it increases the chances of more sever risks like
suicides. Nearly 80 % of suicides are reported to be preceded by a mood disorder, and
depression is associated with higher rates of death and disability from cardiovascular
disease (Frassure-Smith & Lesperence, 1995), diabetes (Eaton, 2002) and cancer (Massie,

Potential causes of rise in depression:

INCREASING INCIDENCE OF DEPRESSION ON AUSTRALIA

As mentioned earlier, there are several causes for depression and can be quiet strongly
linked up with biological, psychological and sociological factors. Co-morbidity is also one of the
reasons contributing towards the current rise in depression in Australia. Since the elderly
population is increasing as well, the prevalence of depression is quiet high in this group. One of
the researches conducted by Australian Bureau of Statistics shows that Although the prevalence
of depression is highest in people between the ages of 35 to 44 years, it can and does affect
people of all ages and from every strata of society.(Slate and Johnston, 2009)
Substance abuse, eating disorders, anxiety disorders are also concomitant to other
physical or mental health problem, particularly in adolescence and early adulthood as at that age
the body is changing, the hormone levels are rushing through the body, peer pressure, seeking
acceptance in the society. Also, gender plays an important role as well Gender is a critical
determinant of health, including mental health The status of woman in most of the developing
countries has made is difficult for them to make decisions about their mental wellbeing as being
living in the male dominated societies, mostly woman usually end up not seeking help as they
are discouraged by the males in the family. On the other hand, the male population is heavily
stigmatized with the concept of being depressed or having mental illness therefore the treatment
is usually ignored by men.
Treatments for depression:
The treatment of depression changes from person to person as per the severity of
their depression. If the onset of depression is identified then the treatment focuses more
on non-medicinal interventions which cover psycho-social interventions. For example,
social engagement, open communication with a family member / spouse or a

INCREASING INCIDENCE OF DEPRESSION ON AUSTRALIA

professional. Developing the sense of responsibility and belonging. Regular follow ups to
the care provider. As the depression proceeds, the treatment gets more complicated and
the use of psychiatric medication becomes inevitable. However, even at this stage the
basic interventions are linked up with the severe level of mental health and the
medications are usually tapered off with the passage of time as well as depending on the
clients condition.
Mental illness with psycho-pathology like Schizophrenia, Dementia or Bipolar
then advanced treatment is needed for the long term basis. Such illnesses require the
specialized treatments which are delivered by the team of trained mental health
professional jointly like Mental Health Nurses, Psychologists, Psychiatrists or
Neuropsychiatries. It is important to highlight the evidence-based face that psychologists
play a crucial role same as Mental Health Nurses in the management of clients suffering
with minor to mild mental health issues using several psychological and behavioral;
interventions to help the patients without having to depend on the medication and to help
stop the prognosis of several mental illnesses. Some of the psychological interventions
used by the psychologists are counseling sessions, family sessions, goal setting and
simple exercises.one of the most famous breakthrough introduced for the treatment of
depression and other mental health issues was Cognitive behavior therapy (CBT) and its
heavily most popular and well supported psychological interventions for depression
(Gloaguen, Cottraux, Cucherat & Blackburn, 1998).
The role of Mental Health Nurses is becoming quite significant for the
management of clients with mental health illnesses. Recent trends show that the nurses
are being trained on delivering the low-risk management intervention to the patient rather

INCREASING INCIDENCE OF DEPRESSION ON AUSTRALIA

than the Psychiatrist him / herself and it has reduced quiet big amount of work load for
the doctors so they can treat more number of new patients.
Mental Health Nurses in the field of mental health are crucial part of the care
team for patients with mental health issues. Latest care and administration model the
management of mental health patients can be greatly performed by the nurses by
acquiring liaison and advisory roles in collaboration with the coworkers in primary care
and mental health care organizations based in the communities with the responsibility of
referral process, if required, to mental health service or specialists. Being a key member
of multidisciplinary & comprehensive treatment services in the field of mental health,
gives nurses the opportunity to work as coordinators in the care program approach. Care
approach aims to ensure that coordinated care meets users needs. (Nursingtimes.net,
2009) After the initial assessment of a patient, a care plan is developed with clients and a
copy is sent to the primary care professional that made the referral, other agencies or
services providing significant care, families or careers, if appropriate.
According to the American Nurses Association, the mental health services can be
enhanced with the help of mental health nurses by follow a systematic approach for the
management of the mental health patients called Nursing Process, Direct Care and
Patient Management(Woman-The Nest, 2015)
Assessment, diagnosis, treatment and evaluation come under the title of Nursing
Process. If a patient is identified to be going through depression, the nurse will evaluate
signs and symptoms followed by tentative diagnosis and create a treatment plan. The plan
could be a referral to psychiatrist, to have counseling sessions or having a conversation
with the patients primary care physician. Finally, the interventions are mutually decided
by the mental health team which could be medication or therapy. Finally, the patient is

INCREASING INCIDENCE OF DEPRESSION ON AUSTRALIA

evaluated periodically to monitor the wellbeing and in case if the progress is not observed
then the assigned nurse re-modifies the care plan with mutual consent.
Furthermore, the nurses provide Direct Care to the clients diagnosed with
depression in the hospital setting. However, such patients are not admitted in the hospital
primarily based only on receiving treatment rather the comprehensive case management
of the patient under supervision. Finally, in the domain of Patient Management, highly
trained Mental Health Nurses provide advanced interventions to the patients including
prescribing medication, monitoring side effects or provide mental health counseling
therapies.
In conclusion, Mental Health Nurses are one of the most important front line staff
for the management of mental health patients. However, globally or in Australia the
question to be asked is that are we creating much needed awareness regarding mental
health at community level? Are we heavily depending on just the Psychiatrists to cater the
patients with mental health or we are training lay personals, counselors, social workers, to
help manage such patients so there is more support available apart from psychiatrists,
psychologists, psychotherapists and nurses ?
Finally, there is a huge unmet need to reach out to the entire community including
hard to reach groups to empower them with the knowledge regarding mental health and
research shows that Mental Health Nurses have excelled in community outreach services
as well. Last but not the least, provision of more mental health improvement facilities are
needed starting from the community level.

INCREASING INCIDENCE OF DEPRESSION ON AUSTRALIA

References
Mayoclinic.org, (2015). Depression (major depression) - Mayo Clinic. Retrieved 25
August 2015, from
http://www.mayoclinic.org/diseases-conditions/depression/basics/definition/con20032977
Who.int, (2015). WHO | Global health workforce, finances remain low for mental
health.
White Cloud Foundation, (2015). The White Cloud Foundation. Retrieved 25 August
2015, from http://www.whitecloudfoundation.org/
BOARD, E. (2011, December 1). Global burden of mental disorders and the need for
a comprehensive, coordinated response from health and social sectors at the country
level.

INCREASING INCIDENCE OF DEPRESSION ON AUSTRALIA

Psychology.org.au, (2015). Australian Psychological Society: A review of depression


diagnosis and management.
(Frassure-Smith, N. & Lesperence, F. (1995). Depression and 18-month prognosis
after myocardial infarction. Circulation, 91, 999-1005.)
Epidemiological evidence on the comorbidity of depression and diabetes. Journal of
Psychosomatic Research, 53, 903-906
Massie, M.J. (2004). Prevalence of depression in patients with cancer. Journal of
National Cancer Institute Monographs, 32, 56-71
Australian Bureau of Statistics, (2015). 4326.0 - National Survey of Mental Health
and Wellbeing: Summary of Results, 2007
Mental health nurses have a key role in implementing new schizophrenia guidance.
GENDER DISPARITIES IN MENTAL HEALTH. World Health Organization, (2011,
April 5).
Nursingtimes.net,. (2009). Mental health nurses have a key role in implementing new
schizophrenia guidance
Gloaguen, V., Cottraux, J., Cucherat, M. & Blackburn, I. (1998). A meta-analysis of
the effects of cognitive therapy in depressed patients. Journal of Affective Disorders,
49, 59-72.
World Health Organization. (1997). Violence against women: A priority issue.
Geneva: World Health Organization.
World Health Organization. (1998). The World Health Report, 1998. Executive
summary. Geneva: World Health Organization.

INCREASING INCIDENCE OF DEPRESSION ON AUSTRALIA

World Health Organization, International Consortium of Psychiatric Epidemiology.


2000. Cross-national Comparisons of mental disorders. Bulletin of the World Helth
Organization, 78: 413-426.
Zunzunegui M.V., Beland F., Llacer A., Leon V. (1998) Gender differences in
depressive symptoms

10