BLOG: Depression #LetsTalk | Breast Cancer UK

BLOG: Depression #LetsTalk

Published 7 Apr 2017

The theme for this year’s World Health Day is depression. It marks the start of a year-long campaign by the World Health Organisation, which will focus on what depression is, and how to prevent and treat it.

The campaign aims to reduce the stigma associated with depression and encourage people who are depressed to seek help. You can follow the campaign on Twitter with #LetsTalk.

Depression is more than just feeling down in the dumps, it is an illness that makes you feel constantly sad for weeks or months. Depression can make you lose interest in activities you enjoy and makes it difficult to carry out daily tasks.

Those who have breast cancer, who have survived breast cancer, or who have a friend or family member who has the disease, may be vulnerable to depression. The pressures of treatment, financial stresses and just trying to get on with ordinary everyday life, can be overwhelming for people with an illness and it’s important that we recognise that mental ill health can be part and parcel of physical ill health.

When discussing how best to tackle breast cancer, we must always be conscious of the impact that a breast cancer diagnosis can have on people’s lives. When we calculate the costs of breast cancer, we might think of the costs of drugs and operations, but we might also calculate the costs of damage to long-term health, and the emotional and social costs to patients and those close to them.

Preventing breast cancer means not only saving the direct costs of treatment, but saving patients and those close to them from the broader disruption and trauma associated with the disease.

Links and helplines for depression

If you are suffering from depression and need someone to talk to, you can call the Samaritans for free on 116 123 or email jo@samaritans.org

For more information on depression and breast cancer, see the Breast Cancer Care website. You can also call their free helpline on 0808 800 6000 or email a Breast Cancer Care nurse.

For other sources of help for depression and other mental health issues, please see the links provided by the NHS and Mind.

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