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800,000 Sri Lankans suffering from depression: WHO

income-inequality-is-making-women-more-depressedWorld Health Organization office said that there are approximately 800, 000 people suffering from depression in Sri Lanka.

Sources say that media can play a key role towards increasing the understanding of depression among the general public, which can help reduce the stigma and lead more people to seek help and recover.

Consultant Psychiatrist attached to Kalubowila Teaching Hospital Dr.Malika Weerasinghe said that adults usually develop sleep disturbances, poor appetite and they loose weight when depressed.

In contrast, adolescents may sleep excessively and increase appetite (especially unhealthy food habits) leading to weight gain.

Depression recurs,  and so  it’s very  important to identify and intervene early and take steps to prevent further episodes.

Meanwhile Health Ministry sources said that annually around 8,000 patients admit to the National Institute of Mental Health (NIMH), Mulleriyawa and 1,000 of them are prescribed to in-house long term treatment.

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