Depression affects the adult population of Latin America

Tomorrow, January 13, 2022 is commemorated Fight Depression Day, a very complex disease and chronicle that intensified during the pandemic by COVID.

The pandemic increased the disease in adolescent children and adults, but since 2020 it is considered the most common mental illness in Mexico, as reported by the Mexican Psychoanalytic Association.

According to data from the World Health Organization (WHO) there are approximately 280 million people affected worldwide, and it is estimated that in Latin America 5% of the adult population suffers from depression.

There are people who are not diagnosed early due to different factors and take up to 15 years to be diagnosed according to the UNAM.

What happens during a depressive episode?

During a depressive episode, people often experience sadness, irritability, a feeling of emptiness, and loss of enjoyment, as well as interest in everyday activities of the day to day.

They also get to present difficulty concentrating and lack of energy, self-esteem is affected, leading to sleep disturbances and eating disorders.

The psychiatrist Raúl Escamilla comments that depression does not distinguish age, gender or social position.

“It should be seen (depression) as a disease that needs a proper diagnosis and treatment. It is important that the condition be viewed from a very serious and thoughtful point of view, as it can turn into a serious health problem, “he stressed.

Patients suffering from depression usually have a positive response to treatment, however one in three people do not improve with conventional antidepressants.

What if I don’t respond to depression treatments?

When patients with major depression no longer respond to two lines of treatment they are considered resistant to treatment (DRT).

According to a study called “Treatment-resistant Depression in Latin America” ​​(TRAL) developed by Janssen, in Latin America, 29.1% suffer from DRT, confirming a high prevalence of the disease.

There are no ways to anticipate who will not respond to treatment, however it was observed that some groups are more prone than others, for example, women and older adults suffer from DRT in higher percentages, for both biological and psychological reasons.

Although the stigma surrounding depression has decreased in recent years, psychiatry calls for destigmatizing the disease as “a person with depression lives a disease that is more common than we imagine, but that is usually underdiagnosed and many times it is not treated correctly. Specialized medical attention is required for its timely diagnosis and treatment, “concluded psychiatrist Raul Escamilla.



  • Depression
  • world day to fight depression
  • mental disorders
  • Mental diseases
  • Health

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