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Death by depression: it can happen to you

Robin Williams, depression sufferer
Robin Williams, depression sufferer

Actor Robin Williams is dead of an apparent suicide. Williams, 63, throughout his lifetime has battled depression and substance abuse. The state of mind for Williams may have been masked by his superlative talents. Mental illness no know bounds, it can affect just about anyone. Basically for attempts of suicide, you are clinically maintained and evaluated for a specific period of time. However, for the act of suicide, depression may be the secondary cause of death. Depression a form of mental illness is the absence of periods of logical reasoning; it influences the thinking process, emotions, and behavior. It can also influence the fight or flight phenomena with reference to daily stresses. Robin Williams who was considered highly creative and intellectual, displayed levels of mental illness in dealing with his public battles with substance abuse as well as his inability to have a normal conversation while being interviewed or publicly addressed. While a lot of highly creative and intellectual individuals do not display personalities common with mental illness, there are still those such as Williams who, overtly, have ongoing issues with the disorder.

Mental illness or depression can affect anyone who may be susceptible to this disease, famous or not. Perhaps you or someone you know has had traumatic experiences, or a substance abuser, or maybe experienced a great loss; any of these experiences, and more, may cause an individual to find a dark place and become mired there. No one really knows what causes depression. What experts suggests is that some individuals maybe biologically susceptible to the disease, while others may be due to environmental causes as well as a chemical imbalance in the brain.

Some of the symptoms of depression may be:

  • Feeling sad or down
  • Difficulty concentrating, remembering details, and making decisions
  • Fatigue and decreased energy
  • Feelings of guilt, worthlessness, and/or helplessness
  • Feelings of hopelessness and/or pessimism Insomnia, early-morning wakefulness, or excessive sleeping Irritability, restlessness
  • Loss of interest in activities or hobbies once pleasurable, including sex
  • Overeating or appetite loss
  • Persistent aches or pains, headaches, cramps, or digestive problems that do not ease even with treatment
  • Persistent sad, anxious, or "empty" feelings
  • Thoughts of suicide, suicide attempts

Depression is treatable. After being evaluated, an individual may be prescribed medication or psychotherapy. It is also helpful to have family and friends support, prayer and meditation, and the will be get the help that is needed.

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