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By Anthony Mayatt, May 10 2017 02:40PM

So this week is Mental Health Awareness Week, and my thoughts have been turning to those of us, probably all of us, who have found ourselves trying to support somebody we care about deeply who isn’t in the greatest of places.

By Anthony Mayatt, Apr 25 2017 12:01PM



There’s quite a bit of publicity around depression currently, with Prince Harry “coming out” as having sought counselling. But what exactly is depression?


Medically speaking, the criteria for what constitutes depression are in the DSM-V, where somebody is meant to have had at least five out of nine specific symptoms, nearly every day for a minimum of two weeks. The symptoms are quite varied, with some very clear cut, such as wanting to kill oneself or more than 5% weight change, whilst others are more subjective such as change in concentration, being irritable or decreased interest in most activities. That’s the sort of thing a GP or psychiatrist is assessing against as to whether somebody has depression, and whether to prescribe medication.

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