Saturday, November 25, 2017

Over 7.3m Bangladeshis suffer from depression, health minister says

  • Senior Correspondent,
    Published: 2017-04-05 21:17:40 BdST


More than 4.5 percent of the adult population of Bangladesh is suffering from depression, Health Minister Mohammed Nasim says, citing a study.

He was speaking at a press conference at his ministry on Wednesday ahead of World Health Day.

The World Health Day is observed every year on Apr 7, the founding anniversary of World Health Organisation. The theme of this year's observation is -- Depression: Let's Talk.

Nasim said the day would be observed in Bangladesh with due appreciation. The main programme at the national level will be held at Osmani Memorial Auditorium in Dhaka at 10:30am. Programmes will also be organised at district and Upazila levels.

Terming depression a global issue, the minister said around 300 million people across the world suffer from this. The number varies from 3 percent to 17 percent in different countries.

According to a survey conducted jointly by National Institute of Mental Health and WHO, 4.6 percent of Bangladesh's adult population is suffering from depression.

Which means, Nasim said, 7.36 million of the total population are suffering from depression.

“Depression can be seen at any age, even among children. But mostly, the symptoms of depression become evident between 30 and 40,” the minister said.

He also said people from the age group of 15 to 18 and over 60 are vulnerable to falling in depression.

He cited long-term disease, poverty, unemployment, loneliness, issues in family and relations, and pregnancy as the reasons behind the disease.

The minister said there were scientific ways to treat the disease. "The patients have to follow the psychiatrists' prescriptions with patience. The patients can return to normal life in most cases of treatment," he said.

He said medicine and psychotherapy are both necessary for cure from depression.