Number of people living with depression on the rise


An estimated 86 million people from South East Asia including Myanmar are suffering from depression. Between 2015 and 2017, the number of people living with depression increased by more than 18 per cent, according to figures released by the World Health Organization (WHO).

Depression has topped the list of mental illnesses around the globe. An estimated 322 million people are living with depression worldwide. Nearly 800,000 people commit suicide every year.

Dr Tin Oo, a mental health specialist said: “Nowadays, more people are under stress as they have to struggle for their daily lives. They are unable to adjust their lives to the rapidly developing situations. There are two kinds of depression. One is caused by daily life struggles and another by diseases. People are not ready to adapt to the rapid growths.  They are unable to keep pace with development. Most of hospitalized patients with depression try to commit suicide as they are unable to cope with social issues.”

Depression is the third most common mental disorders in Myanmar. About 5.7 per cent in 1,000 people have experienced depression. About 300,000 populations are suffering from depression. Especially, mothers who have given birth, TB patients and the elderly are suffering from depression, according to the figures released by the Public Health Department.

Two or three in 100,000 people commit suicide every year. Among them, the people aged between 25 and 40 have topped the list, according to the Mental Health Hospital (Yangon).