HomeHealthWhat FG should do to reduce rising cases of depression –Psychiatrist

What FG should do to reduce rising cases of depression –Psychiatrist

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A clinical psychiatrist, Dr. Nworie McEdward, has urged the Federal Government to provide an enabling environment to curb rising cases of depression and mental health in the country.

McEdward of the Federal Neuro-psychiatric Hospital, Yaba, Lagos, stated this in an interview with the News Agency of Nigeria on Friday.

He said a conducive environment with full security, positive reinforcement, encouragement, gratitude, optimism and care are crucial to national growth and psychological development.

McEdward said these would go a long way in encouraging people and reducing incidents of depression and other mental health-related challenges in the country.

He said the devastating effects of insurgents, insecurity, economic hardships and other crises across the country had left many people in depression and in need of psychiatric evaluation.

McEdward noted that though victims of these crises were often affected psychologically, little or no attention was given to provide them with healthcare services that would cater to their needs.

“We need to provide an atmosphere that is progressive and good for growth; it makes for good psychological development,” he said.

He expressed concern that `triggers of trauma’ were on the rise due to the increasing spate of economic challenges in the country ranging from financial imbalance, joblessness, underemployment, insecurity, family/relationship problems, among others.

“As a result of the development, cases of depression and mental health conditions will continue to increase unless urgent measures are taken by the government to resolve the numerous crisis challenges,” McEdward said.

The psychiatrist said depression was a risk factor for mental health problems that could lead to suicide.

He identified poverty and frustration as the main causes of depression, regretting that some persons in difficult economic situations had considered suicide.

McEdward added that mental disorders, particularly depression and substance abuse, were associated with more than 90 percent of suicide cases.

He explained that suicide resulted from many complex socio-cultural factors, and was more likely to occur during periods of socio-economic crisis.

“In Nigeria, we are dealing with a lot of issues; businesses are falling, things are expensive, cash is hard to come by and basic amenities are lacking.

“This is taking a toll on the mental health of Nigerians; it makes people vulnerable to becoming depressed, suicidal, aggressive and other anti-social behaviours.

“Too much worries and depression can push people to commit suicide,” he said.

He lamented that several people, especially those in rural communities, who needed psychological evaluation and support could not access them due to the poor state of mental health institutions or unavailability of the facility in most cases. 

He, therefore, urged the Federal Government to address the economic hardship in the country; provide an enabling environment and revive the economy to reduce poverty, improve living standards to reduce depression incidents. (NAN)



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