Depressive disorder, commonly known as depression, is a prevalent mental health condition affecting millions of individuals worldwide. In this comprehensive guide, we will delve into the key facts, symptoms, patterns, contributing factors, prevention, diagnosis, treatment, self-care, and WHO’s response to depression.


Claire Russell Therapy, with offices in Limerick, Cork, and available for online sessions, providing a combination of Nutritional Support, Counselling Support, Mind Coaching and Clinical Hypnotherapy, in a compassionate safe environment, providing guidance and support to help individuals with depression.

Key Depression Facts :

  1. Depression is a Common Mental Disorder: Depression is a widespread mental health condition that goes beyond regular mood fluctuations and everyday life experiences.
  2. Global Prevalence: Approximately 5% of adults worldwide suffer from depression. It affects both men and women, with a higher prevalence among women.
  3. Risk of Suicide: Depression can lead to thoughts of suicide and is a significant contributor to suicide rates, making it crucial to address.
  4. Effective Treatment: The good news is that there are effective treatments available for mild, moderate, and severe depression. Seeking help is essential.


Depression encompasses a persistent, depressed mood or a loss of interest or pleasure in activities that lasts for extended periods. It can affect various aspects of life, including relationships, work, and academic performance. People who have faced adverse life events are more vulnerable to depression, with women being more susceptible.


Symptoms and Patterns:

During a depressive episode, individuals experience symptoms like feeling sad, irritable, empty, loss of pleasure, poor concentration, excessive guilt, and hopelessness. These symptoms can significantly disrupt daily life. Depressive episodes are categorized as mild, moderate, or severe, depending on the number and severity of symptoms and their impact on functioning. There are also different patterns, including single episode depressive disorder, recurrent depressive disorder, and bipolar disorder.


Contributing Factors and Prevention:

Depression results from complex interactions between social, psychological, and biological factors. Adverse life events, such as unemployment, bereavement, and traumatic experiences, increase the risk of depression. It can also be closely related to physical health, making it vital to address both aspects. Prevention programs, including school-based initiatives, interventions for parents, and exercise programs, have shown effectiveness.


Diagnosis and Treatment of Depression:

Effective treatments for depression include Nutritional Advice and Support, Counselling, Emotional Support, Counselling, psychological interventions and medications. Seeking care is essential if you experience depression symptoms. Psychological treatments, like cognitive-behavioral therapy, problem-solving therapy, and interpersonal psychotherapy, are often the first line of treatment. Medications, such as selective serotonin reuptake inhibitors (SSRIs), may be used in combination with psychological treatments for moderate to severe depression.



Self-care plays a crucial role in managing depression. Individuals can engage in activities they enjoy, maintain social connections, exercise regularly, follow a good lifestyle and life routine, avoid substance misuse, and seek support from trusted individuals or healthcare providers. If you have thoughts of suicide, remember you’re not alone. Reach out to someone you trust or a healthcare provider. Support groups and crisis lines are available for immediate assistance.


WHO Response:

The World Health Organization (WHO) has taken significant steps to address depression and self-harm/suicide. They have developed interventions and psychological intervention manuals for depression. Lay therapists can deliver these interventions to individuals and groups, making mental health support more accessible.

In conclusion, depression is a prevalent mental health condition, but effective treatments and support are available. Claire Russell Therapy, with a presence in Limerick, Cork, and online, is dedicated to helping individuals understand and manage depression effectively.

Depression Academic References:
  1. Institute of Health Metrics and Evaluation. Global Health Data Exchange (GHDx). [Accessed 4 March 2023].
  2. Woody CA, Ferrari AJ, Siskind DJ, Whiteford HA, Harris MG. A systematic review and meta-regression of the prevalence and incidence of perinatal depression. J Affect Disord. 2017;219:86–92.
  3. Evans-Lacko S, Aguilar-Gaxiola S, Al-Hamzawi A, et al. Socio-economic variations in the mental health treatment gap for people with anxiety, mood, and substance use disorders: results from the WHO World Mental Health (WMH) surveys. Psychol Med. 2018;48(9):1560-1571.