Clinical Depression Mythbusters You Need to Know for Yourself and Your Family


Clinical Depression Defined

Clinical depression is the more-severe form of depression, also known as major depression or major depressive disorder. It is not the same as depression caused by a loss, such as the death of a loved one, or a medical condition, such as a thyroid disorder. – Mayo Clinic

World Health Organization

Each year the World Health Organization or WHO, conducts research to see which diseases, disorders, illnesses.  With this research WHO will analyze which of these cause the most deaths, disabilities or lost time from work.  The most recent study has shown a new trend: clinical depression.

What can be done?

This is serious information.  A discussion needs to be started on what to do, right?  Unfortunately old myths and false beliefs surround this illness of the  brain and it keeps the people who are desperately in need of help from getting what they need.

Our Purpose Today

Today’s purpose is two-fold: expose the myths and inform you on what to look for.

MYTH 1: A person’s weaknesses or personal shortcomings cause the clinical depression.

False. In the 1990’s a survey was conducted and discovered the following public perceptions of depression:

  • 71% said it was due to emotional weakness;
  • 65% said it was caused by bad parenting;
  • 45% said it’s the victim’s fault, and you can “will it away”;
  • 43% said it is incurable;
  • 35% said it is a consequence of sinful behavior; and
  • 10% said it has a biological basis involving the brain. (“Essential Psychopharmacology,” 2002, Stahl, Steven, the Press Syndicate of the University of Cambridge.)

Only 10% correctly identified the factual truth that this blue mood is a biologically based brain disorder, involving a genetic vulnerability.

MYTH 2: It is no different than grief

False. When someone close to you dies, you enter a process of grief.  You feel terrible, the decedent is mourned, and you feel a powerful feeling of loss. But, that does not mean you are clinically depressed. The sadness was a part of a normal process that most people go through when they lose a loved. It is completely normal.

During the time of grieving, one does not experience a loss of self-esteem, nor do they blame themselves in any way. In addition, the feelings of sadness made sense and were all related to one specific event (the death of your loved one).

This form of mental illness, alternatively, is not a normal process, nor will time alone be an effective remedy. When your loved one passed away, you missed them however in time the sting of loss was not as great.

This is not true for someone with “Eeyore syndrome”.  People who are experiencing this feel a tremendous loss of self-esteem. Something has happened that has unbalanced basic brain functioning.

MYTH 3: Children never get depressed.


The Truth about Clinical Depression

False. This myth goes like this — look at a school playground. The kids are running, jumping, laughing, and playing. Their burdens in life are small and simple — make friends, do your homework, obey your parents. What could possibly upset a child enough to make him down in the dumps?

The reality of children’s down mood is as follows:

  1. Children and adolescents experience clinical depression, but it does not look like what it would in adults.
  2. Children “mask” these warning signs — anger, pessimistic thinking, school failure, learning problems, behavioral problems, eating disorders, substance abuse disorder, self-cutting.

MYTH 4: The treatment for this in children, adolescents, and adults rarely works.

False.  New and extremely effective treatments have been exciting 21st Century breakthroughs in neuroscience. When compared to the treatment effectiveness of another chronic medical condition, such as asthma, treatment of clinical depression has just as high a rate of success. Most patients who have received high quality treatment, recover and lead productive lives.

MYTH 5: Lack of insurance is a major roadblock that stops people from seeking treatment.

False. Fear is the major roadblock that stops people from seeking treatment for clinical depression. Knowledge is the best medicine for overcoming fear.


Please leave a comment on the mythbusters of this mental illness.  You can always email me at

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