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The Spiral of Depression



According to the World Health Organisation (WHO, 2021) depression is classed as an illness that is worldwide estimating that around 280 million people in the world suffer from this. It is important to note that depression is different from common mood responses due to events from everyday living.


Depression can range from moderate or severe intensities, and it can become a very serious condition affecting health with poor function at work, school or within the family. Sadly, depression can lead to suicide and over 700 000 people die from suicide every year. It is also known to be the fourth cause of death between 15–29-year-olds (WHO, 2021).


Am I Depressed? Answer the following questions in the following recognised self-assessment tool to find out how you are feeling right now.

Answer each questions giving yourself a score of either 0,1,2 or 3. When 0 = not at all, 1 = Several days, 2 = More than half the days, 3 = Nearly every day.


PHQ9                                      

  1. Little interest OR pleasure doing things

  2. Feeling down, depressed, or hopeless

  3. Trouble falling OR staying awake, OR sleeping too much

  4. Feeling tired OR having little energy

  5. Poor appetite OR overeating

  6. Feeling bad about yourself OR you are a failure OR have let yourself/your family down

  7. Trouble concentrating on things such as the newspaper or watching television

  8. Moving or speaking so slowly that other people could have noticed OR the opposite - being so fidgety or restless that it is hard to sit still

  9. Thoughts you would be better off dead, or hurting yourself in some way

What do the scores mean?

1-4 none

5-9 mild depression

10-14 moderate depression

15-19 moderately severe depression

20-27 severe depression

(Pfizer, R, I Spitzer, Janet B Williams and Kroenke K., 2021)

Sometimes counselling and therapy can be complimented by support from your G.P. with regards to prescribed medication. It is of course an individual choice and if a person is continuing to have suicidal thoughts perhaps this could be an option to at least talk this over with your doctor.

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