Are Those Sad Thoughts More Than Just Being Sad?

Ruzanna Harutyunyan's picture
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In the U.S. there are approximately 15 million, or about 6.7 percent of the U.S. population, age 18 and older that suffer from depression. In fact, according to the National Institute of Mental Health, depression is the leading cause of disability in the U.S. for ages 15-44. The majority of those affected are women.

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For many it can be difficult to determine if the sadness they feel is temporary, or a more permanent illness that requires medical attention. Brookhaven Retreat, a voluntary residential treatment facility specially designed for women, is now offering a way to get answers. On the facility's Web site there is a depression survey that can be used as a diagnosis tool.

"For the women that come to Brookhaven, depression is much more than just sadness or unhappiness. The negative stigma attached to depression is one of the main reasons that treatment isn't sought," said Jacqueline Dawes, owner and founder of Brookhaven Retreat. "The survey on our website is a confidential and effective measurement of depressive symptoms that women may be feeling."

The survey asks the participant to identify symptoms they may be experiencing, such as sleeping difficulties, distorted thoughts and feeling overwhelmed. If a person's survey responses indicate that medical attention should be considered, they are given the option of confidentially discussing depression, without judgment or criticism, with a member of the Brookhaven Retreat staff.

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