Do you know anyone that suffers from anxiety or depression?… Do you know what it is really like? How THEY feel? Most people think that people with depression are the stereotypical looking person with long black hair and listens to rock… but actually, you can’t tell if someone has depression just by looking at them, this is because a lot of the time they try to hide it and go on as normal by making jokes, smiling, ANYTHING to hide how they really feel inside. Symptoms that people with depression have are; loss of energy, anger or irritability, changes in sleep and or appetite, feelings of hopelessness and helplessness & feeling alone. Depression affects 1 in 5 older people, over 8,000 children under 10 and nearly 80,000 young people. So why or how can this be caused? Well, there is no specific cause for depression, it can develop for many reasons. Some examples are; a stressing or upsetting event in their life such as the loss of someone, illness, redundancy and others. Some people have family that have suffered from depression in the past and are more likely to suffer from it aswell. Young people who have been bullied can also develop depression, feeling isolated, worthless and unhappy. These are just some examples of how depression can develop but nobody is the same and it is different for everyone. How can depression affect your life?… it is not just the person with depression that it affects but also their friends, family and even school/work life. Depression can affect someone’s concentration which can result in poor work in school or at work. The loss of appetite can result in fast weight loss which is very unhealthy and dangerous. Not doing activities that they used to enjoy or even stop socialising with friends and family leads them to feel even more isolated, alone and sad. So we come onto anxiety… People normally think that those who suffer from anxiety are just “scared” but actually there is so much more to it than just being scared. The symptoms of anxiety are as follows; excessive worry, sleep problems, irrational fears, muscle tension, self-consciousness, panic attacks, flashbacks, perfectionism, self-doubt and along with a lot more symptoms. In a lot of cases, anxiety comes along with depression which makes it even harder to recover from. Almost 1 in 5 people have anxiety and only 1 in 20 never feel anxious. So how does this affect their life? Some people with anxiety have panic attacks without even knowing why, this can be very distressful. Some have a feeling of dizziness, neausea, trembling hands, sweating, pounding heart and headaches. This can be very distressing for the person because it is hard to control. Anxiety can cause people to avoid social situations for example public transport, shopping centres, resturants, elevators and even school. This makes daily life harder and they cannot enjoy these things that other people fund easy and fun. These mental illnesses are overlooked in society and the media, being brushed off as un-important or silly. These people do not ask to have this illness nor do they like it. But because of society’s judgements they find it harder to get help and recover from it. As people we have morals of what is right and wrong so why do we think it is okay to judge these people? They are not weird. They re not psycos. They are not crazy. They are none of these ridiculous labels. They need support and help. Maybe if we all took this into consideration they might be able to take a step forward to recovery.