Even though depression affects approximately one in five people, it’s still something that goes very much unnoticed.
People often find themselves isolated while suffering with this debilitating illness, and making matters worse most find it difficult to communicate and help those who are having a visit from the ‘black dog’.
Thankfully a new study, as reported by the i100, shows how to offer your support just by asking particular types of questions.
It isn’t as patronising as it sounds. It’s called ‘Socratic questioning’ and scientists have suggested that this can help those suffering, by helping them to adjust their mindset to get a wider perspective on the root-cause of the depression.
Of course, that’s if there is one, as some variations of the mental health problem are caused by hormonal and chemical imbalances, however the questioning may be able to ease some of the symptoms.
One example used demonstrates how these types of questions might help someone suffering from depression due to divorce to see their situation from a different angle.
The questions suggested included:
-How does being divorced translate into being a failure?
-What evidence is there that you have succeeded and you are not a failure?
The research came about after a study took place, involving 55 adults with depression.
Various types of cognitive therapy were administered over four months, with certain types of questions discovered to have a positive impact on their mood.
Dr Danel Strunk, a lead researcher on the study, said:
We think that one of the reasons that cognitive therapy has such enduring positive effects is that patients learn to question their negative thoughts, and continue doing so even after the treatment ends.
Although this might not be the answer to getting rid of depression in its entirety, it could be a breakthrough in helping to tackle depressive responses to different scenarios in life.