Sunday, October 09, 2005

Depression: Gread an Ghruaim (Beat the Blues)

Coinciding with World Mental Health Day today, Dr. Orla McDonnell, a Junior Lecturer in Sociology at the University of Limerick, has launched a wristband campaign to raise money to combat depression. Dr. McDonnell lost her father and brother to suicide within a year and is now leading the “Beat The Blues” initiative to help Ireland AWARE fund programs to teach teenage schoolchildren to cope with emotional stress.

The wristbands also include the phrase “Gread an Ghruaim”, with means "Beat the Blues" in Irish.

I have contacted Dr. McDonnell to see if I could procure some of those wristbands to distribute on this website. It's a long shot, of course, but I wanted to do something to show my support from across the pond. Any effort to educate people about depression that emphasizes coping strategies seems like a good program to me. Even if medications work for a person, without learning coping mechanisms to manage depression, the medicated patient is at the mercy of skipped dosages, acclimation, or side effects. There are mental exercises we can do to regulate our feelings and manage our depression...