We are our mind. It creates heaven and hell for us in this life. Lets work to understand ourselves through introspection and through our relationships that define us, says consultant child and adolescent psychiatrist Bhooshan Shukla. He believes that it is essential to assess and intervene for all psychological problems among children as well as adults. While one cannot eliminate stress and anxiety from life,there is a need to alter our reaction to stressful events. Observing World Mental Health Day (October10),experts like Shukla and others come together to create awareness on mental health,doctors also advise the need for measures to deal with stress-related anxiety and depression. The theme this year is Mental health and older adults.
Issues such as depression and anxiety often aggravated by stressful lifestyle,and are taking an increasing toll on the health of people. The adverse impact of this on the quality of life of young Indians is quite high. Among 15-29-year-old Indians,suicide is estimated to be the number one cause of premature death, said Lalit Dandona,research professor at Public Health Foundation of India and professor of global health at Institute of Health Metrics and Evaluation (IHME ). Dandona said that while the country is grappling with a complex combination of neo-natal and communicable diseases,as well as non-communicable diseases such as cancer and heart disease,we also need to plan appropriate systems and investments to address mental health problems.
According to a study titled Global Burden of Disease 2010,in India,infectious diseases and maternal complications continue to rank the highest in terms of death and disability; however,the increase in cases of non-communicable diseases cannot be ignored,Dandona said.
According to World Health Organisation,one DALY (disability-adjusted life year) can be thought of as one lost year of healthy life. The sum of these DALYs across the population can be thought of as a measurement of the gap between current health status and an ideal health situation where the entire population lives to an advanced age,free of disease and disability. Citing this,Dandona said that in 1990,major depressive disorder as a cause for DALY ranked 21st. Ten years later in 2010,major depressive disorder as a cause for DALY increased in ranking to 14th with a median percent change of 50 per cent. Self-harm ranks on top as a cause for DALY for young people between the ages of 20 and 24.
Doctors point that mental health disorders are among the top causes of disability in many countries. Globally,major depressive disorder ranks second as a cause of disability,following lower back pain.