WRITING 105 – I
DEPRESSION – A RISING PROBLEM IN COLLEGE STUDENTS
Submitted to: Professor A Submitted by: Blue Man Date: November 27, 2012
November 27, 2012
Research paper – Draft 3
Depression – a rising problem in college students
Depression, though common, is a serious mental disorder or illness mainly caused by gloomy or anxious state of mind. Though most of the times, it does not have any visible symptoms, it can be considered as, or more, severe than common physical diseases like HIV-AIDS and cancer because of its ‘slow death’ effect it has on people who suffer from psychological conflicts. According to the American College Health Association, the suicide rate among young adults, ages 15-24, has tripled since the 1950s and suicide is currently the second most common cause of death among college students (ACHA). Considering this fact of its encroachment in youths, which has now resulted to more vicious consequences among teenagers and adults than ever, depression today has become a serious issue among the college students.
Many people experience the first symptoms of depression during their college years. These mildest forms of emotions, in the beginning, usually pass quickly – within couple of days; however, untreated depression lasts for a long time, interferes with day-to-day activities and is much more than just being “a little down” or “feeling blue.” Unfortunately, many college students who have depression aren’t getting the help they need. They may not know where to go for help, or they may believe that treatment won’t help. Others don’t get help because they think their symptoms are just part of the typical stress of college, or they worry about being judged if they seek for mental health care. Whatever is the case, before they start realizing the degree of its effects upon them or their state of helplessness, depression will already have tricked them in its ‘dark world’.
In 2009, the American College Health Association-National College Health Assessment (ACHA-NCHA) – a nationwide survey of college students at 2 – and 4 – year institutions – found that nearly 30 percent of college students reported feeling “so depressed that it was difficult to function” at some time in the past year. This statistical analysis gives us the overall picture of how huge portion of the college students are being directly affected by the negative influence that depression gives them. The data also indicate the fact that the process of this emotional disturbance becomes even stronger when various negative factors bother students in their high school and subsequently in their college level. These factors are basically derived from their own individual and social perceptions about themselves. However, this necessarily does not mean that every student has to have felt the same kind of depression.
According to ACHA, there are basically three common types of depressive disorders that students often go through: major depressive disorder, dysthymic disorder and minor depression. Also known as ‘major depression’, major depressive disorder is when symptoms of inactivity or carelessness are seen in everyday activities such as studying, eating, and sleeping. While these sorts of disorders might be associated with physical inabilities of the students, here psychological response plays the main role. Though people with this order may have only episode of major depression in their lifetimes, there always exists a chance of its repetitive comeback, depending upon the state of his/her psychology or the environment. Dysthymic disorder, or technically known as dysthymia is a mild, chronic depression. As per the ACHA report, the symptoms of dysthymia last for a long period of time. Depending upon the mindset of an individual, it can last for two