Mental Health (2)


Is Apathy an Illness?

Apathy is characterized by the lack of interest in people and activities. You will feel unmotivated and bored with things you used to enjoy. Apathy also refers to the absence of feeling or emotion for anything. You might feel indifferent towards situations that would normally incite concern, anger or happiness from other people.

When should you be concerned about it?

Apathy

Apathy will cause the person to lose interest in things that used to excite or make him/her happy. There is also a lack of response to most things that happen around the person. They choose to expend no effort and show no motivation because nothing can be derived out of the experience anyway. Although apathy is normal and can disappear after a while (this is called transient apathy), chronic lack of interest and response can affect relationships and performance at work or school.

Anxiety

Apathy itself is not an illness but it is a symptom of various medical conditions such as anxiety. This condition can cause apathy because of emotional fatigue. Anxiety can make the person go through intense emotions that tire them out. Anxious people lose the ability to feel happy because they always think negatively. Negative thoughts in turn make enjoying things difficult for the affected person. This lack of emotion and happiness might also be caused by low levels of serotonin.

Depression

Depression and other depressive disorders can cause people to “lose the ability to feel.” You may have heard of songs about feeling numb about the events around them. There is no happiness or even loneliness derived from it. Apathy might be a way for the person to cope with the stress and disappointment. In one type of depressive mood disorder, dysthymia, apathy is prevalent in such condition.

Laziness

A lot of apathetic people are called lazy, but laziness is different from apathy. Sometimes the lack of motivation is also not caused by depression if it is not accompanied by feelings of hopelessness, guilt, persistent negative thoughts, and extreme sadness. Lazy people do not necessarily have lack of response to rewards. Apathy creates a disconnection and the incapacity to feel anything. Moreover, there may be physical manifestations of apathy such as lesions in the frontal lobe of the brain.

Schizophrenia

Sometimes called psychotic disorder, schizophrenia is caused by brain abnormalities and creates hallucinations, delusions, and changes in behavior and speech. This is classified today into negative and positive symptoms. Apathy belongs to type 2 or chronic schizophrenia and is considered a negative symptom. Apathy can be an early indication of the condition or it may appear later on along with other symptoms. Schizophrenia will cause the person to lose interest in activities that used to be important to them such as work and personal hygiene.

Other Medical Conditions

Apathy is also a symptom of any of the following medical conditions: stroke, Alzheimer’s disease, Parkinson’s disease, Huntington’s disease, vascular or frontotemporal dementia, and progressive supranuclear palsy.




We Need to Talk about Depression  

 

Depression is a real thing because we saw many people choose to commit suicide. Singapore was shaken upon hearing the suicide of Autumn Radtke. Autumn is the CEO if bitcoin startup – First Meta. The twenty eight year old entrepreneur had some professional and personal struggles especially that she did not get the traction she had hoped for her startup company. Her friends here in Singapore expressed their shock because Autumn was an outgoing person.

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It does not end there because another Faigy Mayer jumped to her death from a rooftop in New York on July 20, 2915. Faigy was also the CEO of Appton – an app development studio. This is alarming. There is a clinical professor who conducted a study of the link between entrepreneurship and mental health.  According to the study of Dr. Michael Freeman, the respondents exhibit mental conditions like depression (30%), ADHD (29%) and anxiety (27%).

What does this tell us? Some entrepreneurs suffer depression and they did not talk about. We only know about their depression when we hear them jump to their death. Suicide here in Singapore happens and according to 2012 statistics, suicide numbers here increased to a record high. The highest increase would be from the 20-29 age group.

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This age group identified problems like stress over work or studies, unemployment, family life, financial worries and social interaction. This age is crucial since we are still exploring our identity and building our career. This event can be very stressful and it can lead to suicide. According to Samaritans of Singapore (SOS), people who attempted suicide increased 38% from 2011.

We should learn from this article. If we are in pain, we know better than to hide it. We have to approach the right people for help.

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