Mental health crash course – By Divine Autumn
Terms like OCD, anxiety, ‘psycho’ ‘your mental’ or ‘schzio’ get thrown around non-stop these days, medical diagnosis’ are loosely explained and overwhelming and on top of this doctors love using complex language to explain an infinite set of highly specific terminology. In the modern system, trained professionals expect us to know and keep up with the ever evolving world of medicine but everywhere we look loud voices with no training speak out of turn filling the atmosphere with false information for no other reason than to see confusion.
The answer to avoid all this stress? Education!
To educate ourselves on the most important terminology and basics, but not everyone has the time or resources to read a couple thousand medical journals, observe and even conduct experiments testing and proving what we need to know.
No need to fear, your friendly neighbourhood team over here at Rainbow After The Storm are focused on normalising and explaining these difficult topics in easy to understand and process crash courses.
Today’s topic : Depression and Anxiety disorder
We have previously covered the topic of anxiety disorders here and have been doing the research towards multiple pieces upon depression, however what will be covered here is how the two are intertwined, and each can stress the problems of the other disorder.
Psychologically speaking there are a multitude of explanations into causes, each major approach believes it holds the answer and discredits all other explanations. Literal decades of studies with conflicting results out-right confirming an explanation and thus disproving all alternative options. The reason for this conflict within the field is there are a million different disorders within depression, but they are so similar it can be almost impossible to tell the differences without months of close observation. Causes of depression span from chemical imbalances within the brain to deep rooted childhood trauma. We here at Rainbow will be discussing some of the most common found explanations towards depression in much more detail soon, so stay tuned.
Depression and anxiety have long been linked together, the two disorders or variations of the disorders, have always gone hand-in-hand, and help one another to create a more hostile mindscape in various methods.
A common one is the reliance on the escape of apathy (escaping all feelings of emotions, interest or concern about something). A common symptom of depression in which the person is unable to process or even feel emotions, outside of bursts of heavy pain. Not every apathetic person experiences these bursts, but they are common, essentially when your guard is down (say watching a tv comedy program).
The person will feel a small amount of emotion and express it (in this example by laughing). This allows all the other emotions that are shut off to express themselves and completely overwhelm the person, causing a burst of pain quickly followed by a complete shut-off. This A, makes the person not want to repeat the experience (ostracising comedians of any kind in this example) and B, gives more justification to apathy, as complete apathy would have avoided this pain. The more it happens, the more the brain unconsciously leans towards total apathy, making it harder to feel any sort of joy.
Anxiety can be completely overwhelming, especially when an anxiety disorder is present. A constant low buzz in the back of the brain that builds the more difficult things become. This allows a lot of pushed down emotions to come up during a panic attack, only making the attack worse thus justifying total apathy to the brain. Anxiety can make apathy a thousand times worse by the brain shutting down much more, or by the complete opposite, the brain can struggle to lockout anxiety if it's high. Thusly allowing all the other emotions to come out in full blow. Apathy and anxiety is dangerous.
Anxiety can also stress a feeling of hopelessness (another common symptom of depression, whether it be hopelessness about the self, future, world or just a general feeling of pessimism). Anxiety can often feel like it is thousands of things overwhelming the person, making the situation seem impossible to pass, with depression adding a feeling of hopelessness, succumbing to the pain and giving up becomes what seems to be the only option.
Now, we didn’t intend to make these situations inescapable, quite the opposite. These impossible situations can be fought through and beaten, as hopeless as it may seem, there is always hundreds of thousands of options, finding them is the hardest part. Having been in a situation that was seemingly unbeatable, being told my camhs years ago they couldn’t help me, then finding out my coping mechanisms were addictive, being told by a crying specially trained emergency counsellor that she couldn’t help me, being allergic to most forms of medication. There are other options, there forever and always will be.
To help find these options, keep asking your local GP, try private and I cannot recommend visiting Rainbow After the Storm enough. An open community based globally, spanning between people form every walk of life.
Instead of a usual sign off, I’m going to list off some of the contact info for methods that can help. I promise you, no matter how many oaths seem to be cut off, there are always more, and many that suit your needs much better, you just need to hold the fight within yourself to be open to looking.
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