DEPRESSION AND ANXIETY becoming increasingly common in adolescence
By: Danijel Frfalanovic
Increasing nuber of young people are suffering from, deppresion and anxiety, which are slowly becoming deseases of the modernity, and the numbers are getting higher daily, says psychologist Miodrag Đorđević
Ilustrating this, is a case of a twenty year old student N.Đ. who realised that he is deppresed when all he could se are bad sides of life. According to him, he was haunted by dark thoughts and thinks that the reason lies in his family, for whom he feared the most.
- It was getting worse and worse, i was losing control over my condition. I started abusing medications. I felt lost, empty, hopeless, sad, like everything is crumbling around me. I couldn´t eat, nor slee. Later, the shivers came – young man opens up.
After that, he attempted suicide.
- That woke me up. I have hurt a lot of people that care for me, and i feel a great deal of guilt. When i couln´t bare no more, i told my parents how i feel i and went to see a psychiatrist. Whatever is the matter, you need to think clearly and be persistant, there is a solution for everything. You need to set a goal, and just progress forwards and overcome all obstacles – N.Đ. is firm.
Commenting on suicie, Đorđević says that it is most likely when crisis does not look like it will pass, when no exit is apparent, and feels misunderstood. Luckily, only a small number of people doesn´t look for help.
„The hardest fight in life is the one with your inner deamons“
Unlike N.Đ. , twenty-one year old A.J. faced deppression for the first time when she was 19. She lost appetite, lost a dosen kilograms, started to suffer from insomnia, often confining herself to her room, isolated from the outside world. Waking with chest pains, aching joins, chronic fatigue and loss of joy. It all started like this:
„As an emotional person, i was exposed to manipulations from my friends, being used, and being often emotionally dissapointed. I even got attacked in the middle of the street, which really scared me, and i am a type of person that hides their fears and suffers untill it all comes bursting outside“ – says A.J.
For two years she was suppressing all that was happening aroun her, breakup of a long relationship, starting her studies, losing her brother. The moment that she realised that she hit the wall was when she started to write her parting letter.
„I realised that i need a doctor, because i used to stop in the middle of a bridge, and start to ponder suicide, or when i spent hours on the internet finding out what would be the best way to kill myself without feeling any pain – almost in a single breath speaks A.J.
After she had her appointment, she was diagnosed with mixed anxiety and deppresion disorder.
„I had moments where i couldn´t control my anger, and sometimes my emotions would overwhelm me, doctor prescribed me antideppresants and other medication, so my psyche and organism would get in balance, because my psychich condition caused heart problems and elevated shugar levels, which also got me on medication“.
A.J. says that it gets a lot better when you learn to deal with your problems, and even better when you know that there are people with the same kind of issues.
„I was really surprised when my longtime friend told me that those same things are happening to him, i was glad that i am not alone in this vicious circle of fear.
People are ashamed of it, it is not a thing to be ashamed of, and the hardest fight in life is the one with internal demons and fears, espetially if you don´t know where they come from“.
Talking abut deppression is a tabu for a lot of people, and it must not be a thing to be ashamed of – says Đorđević.
„I think that wery little is said about it because people are bearing a lot of guilt inside, blaming themselves, and believes that they are weak. Sooner or later they have moments where fights with themselves occur. It is not a shame to tell someone you have the flu, and it is not a shame to say that something is bothering you and that you can´t bear it“
“Happy heart is a good cure, low spirits can dry bones”
Twenty-six year old M.V. from suburbs of Niš reminds us of her case when she was just 6. She was always alenated, she had many friends, but always chose to sit to sit on the stairs in front of their family home.
„One day, i had a thought that i can die at any moment, i foresaw my own death – car crash. Every time i got into a car, was the last time – M.V. starts the story
It was repeating untill one moment which she thought was her last, she had a vision, where it would happen, and in what way. When that place got closer, she started to say goodbye to her personal belongings, but nothing happened, so she asumed that she will die on the way back. But, what happened next changed everything:
„We stopped by grandma´s house, i took the Bible, and told myself that i must find a solution for my problem, and the page that i open will mark my future. I opened and se verse said „Happy heart is a good cure, low spirits can dry bones“. After this sentence my problems continued, but i had a firm belief that it wasn´t an accident. Whenever i feel bad, i remmember that event and that sentance“ – M.V. concludes her story.
Đorđević says that deppression can occur after stressfull events, but also as a disorder of fitting in, with adolescents. Also, people look for different ways to solve their problems, some with sports, some with religion, others find it hobbies, it is all individual.
M. Đ. , a psychologist, was on the street, when she realised that she could walk no more, feeling weak, assuming that her blood pressure has dropped, but, she realised that something is wrong when people approached her, hoping to help.
Her heart was pounding, ears buzzing and having watery eyes. Thinking it was childish and it will pass, it was not, every time she was out alone, outside, in a bus, or being alone home, attacks would return and become more severe. She starts her story like this:
„For a long time i had severe pains in all of my joints, making me incapacitated. I couldn‘ t walk, to bathe without help, to get dressed…. I was often at emergency room because of the pain. Panic attacks followed after that, when I was left at home alone.
“At that moment different questions came to mind, what if it hurts again, I won´t be able to get to the taxi, I couldn´t get help, I will die here, and no one will know, because I couldn´t reach the phone. My heart was pounding so hard I thought that I will suffocate. “
After fifteen minutes she could calm herself that she is alright, and that she is just scared.
„I realized that the fact of me being scared of something happening won´t actually prevent it from happening, making fear unneeded and reduntant. Fear makes me only worse, because it paralyzes me and makes me think black“ – M. Đ. explaines her fears.
She did not seek any expert help, but she talked to her loved ones about a problem that she has in order for them to understand herr and help. Đorđević insists on talking to a doctor because crisis can be overcomed, but curing the depression can depend greatly on the size of the problem.
„Sometimes problem can be solved with talking only, and sometimes medicamentose therapy is needed for the conversation to take effect. There are no rules in duration of therapy, and sometimes only few sessions can make thing better, while other times more time must be invested.“ – says Đorđević
Annualy around 450 young people come for counselling with diagnoses of deppression and anxiety. Đorđević says that members of his office hold more than 220 workshops and 350 classes in schools.