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Depression is one of the mental illnesses that most affects the world population. Learn more about it with these TED talks
Depression is one of the most common mental illnesses in the world, and also the most hidden by those who suffer from it. According to the World Health Organization (WHO), depression is "the leading global cause of disability and contributes very significantly to the global burden of disease" and affects more than 300 million people in the world suffer from it .
Leer en español: 3 charlas de TED para aprender sobre la depresión
Therefore, talking about this disease is very important to raise awareness about it and thus better understand its operation. The three TED talks that we present here at LatinAmerican Post, tell us about depression, from different disciplines, and by those who suffer from it.
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1. "Depression, the secret we share", Andrew Salomon
Andrew Salomon, a professor at the Columbia University Medical Center and former president of PEN America, is an LGBT writer, journalist, and activist. In addition to the above, has won awards of great relevance as the National Book Award non-fiction for his book Far of tree: stories of parents and children who have learned to love (2012) and The Demon of Depression (2001), in addition to being a finalist for Pulitzer for the latter.
"The opposite of depression is not happiness, but vitality" as one of the guidelines for understanding this disease. During the conference, Solomon tells his own story about depression, about the questions that were asked when medical and psychological treatment was already inevitable.
However, not only he tells his story, but how from it, he began a journalistic project to better understand the disease and the people who live with it. From there, he knows people with mild depressions and treatable with medications to others who underwent brain operations to control it.
Finally, Salomon states that "depression is a family secret that we all share", to emphasize the importance of making this disease visible and, thus, begin to create better treatments and make the world aware of the great impact of depression in our society
2. "Do not suffer your depression in silence", Nikki Webber Allen
Nikki Webber is a multimedia producer, twice winner of an Emmy Award, and founder of I Live for ..., a foundation that promotes dialogue about mental illness in communities of color. He has also produced documentaries about stories about depression and anxiety.
In this TED Talk, Webber tells us about her personal history with depression and anxiety, diseases that usually go together. She tells how in her life full of successes, the diagnosis of depression forced her to hide it to her family at first.
This changed when his 22-year-old nephew committed suicide. From that break point, she decided to investigate herself about illness and make it visible in her African-American community.
The above is of great importance because, according to the data collected by her, in the African-American community this disease is often more silent, due to stereotypes such as the strong woman or the hyper-masculine man.
So, this TED Talk not only tells us about a personal story but about how depression affects large communities like the African-American in which it usually passes more unnoticed.
3. "How to connect with depressed friends", Bill Bernat
Bill Bernat, a recovering addict with bipolar disorder, is a comedian and storyteller, who decided to create awareness of mental illness through stories. He conducts workshops in organizations and has worked with Comedy Central.
This talk by Ted focuses more on treating depression humoristically, illness suffered by the speaker, and so give some advice to talk to depressed people.
Thus, without diminishing weight to the disease, Bernat tells jokes about how himself for being depressed, how he has managed to build communication bridges even suffering from social anxiety, among others.
His reflection on what people's fears are when talking to depressives, what to do and what not to do in these conversations, is a comic turn to the seriousness with which this disease is usually treated. For the above, we recommend this talk as another way to make visible the depression through a person who is capable of making fun of herself and the prejudices about her.
LatinAmerican Post | Juan Gabriel Bocanegra
Translated from "3 charlas de TED para aprender sobre la depresión"