2022 Abstracts Stage 3

Major Depressive Disorder: An investigation into causation, treatment, and support structures within the UK

Connor Oulton, 2022, Stage 3

Within this project, an investigation occurred which looked at the genealogy of the causation of depression and the potential treatments that result from the theories. This investigation look at studies ranging from Ancient Greece to the medieval ages, to the 1920’s, to the 1950’s and finally the modern age. This was done by researching studies, journal articles and books by both scientists and philosophers about what depression was understood to be. The discussion involved Hippocrates, Bogdan Popoveniuc, Sigmund Freud, B. F. Skinner to name a few. An interview with CAMHS also took place where a deeper understanding of support structures which offer help to children with both the diagnosis and treatment of depression. The rationale behind the project is because the author has struggled with depression for a lot of their life, and they want to understand what the potential causes could have been and what treatments might be available to the author. The author has found that depression is often caused through genetic malfunctions within a human, and is maintained through unhealthy circumstances in the environment. Also the author also found that CAMHS was a struggling system, that it was severely underfunded and understaffed, and the staff that worked there were up against immense workloads. Studies pointed to a holistic approach to treatment that takes into account both childhood, genetics and how the individual behaves at the current point in their lives. This means that therapies like Cognitive Behavioural Therapy or Psychoanalysis, and treatments like medication, often fail as the disease is approached in a way that must be nipped in the bud as soon as possible. The implication of this conclusion is that a new therapy needs to be created which takes into account all of the previously mentioned circumstances, and that CAMHS needs to be reorganised in a way where children should see councillors within school that are trained in mental health specifically. These new councillors should allow for children to understand their own situations, and it should remove the cessation of social interaction that is typically seen in mental illness of children.

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