Is Depression an Epidemic Illness or a Celebrity Trend

Mental health is commonly discussed in newspapers nowadays, where it is claimed that depression and anxiety are greatly increasing (Batty, 2011; Street-Porter,2010). However there is disagreement whether more treatment interventions are needed (Swinson cited by Batty, 2011), or the diagnosis is flawed (Street-Porter ,2010). Elsewhere there are conflicting opinions about reasons for the increase.   Barker (2010) cites Wakefield (1992) arguing that psychiatric conditions are difficult to assess, and Shorter & Tyrer (2003) arguing that depression is similar to anxiety and psychosis, and that diagnosis is problematic.   However Winnicot (1988), cited by Barker et al (2010:31) argues that reactive depression is a normal part of life, enabled by healthy emotional-growth. To follow his ideas would see the incidence of diagnosed depression decreasing. In the audio Excerpt 4 (Healey, 2010) psychiatrist David Healy argues that many depressive illnesses will get better in time without intervention. Street-Porter claims that depression is in-vogue, whilst Batty (2010) relates depression to the economic downturn.
    Street-Porter (2010) argues that depression is a new trendy illness brought about mainly by unrealistic lifestyle aspirations. Her perspective considers the situation of high-profile celebrities, who prefer to maintain an enhanced presence. It could be said that her argument fails to address depression in everyday working life. Although she states that 11.2% of women experience depression at any time, she fails to support her argument with substantial research.   Journalists are prone to manipulating the truth to sell newspapers.
She argues that poor working classes are too busy trying to make ends meet to be depressed.   She reiterates that daily life is series of disappointments and that depressed celebrities should pull themselves together.   She feels that self-empowerment is the way forward. She points out that the nation has become obese and unhealthy, and...