Medical science has made major advances in recent times leading to a change in the quality of life of individuals. True that medicine has made it possible for us to prolong our life as well as enjoy a good quality of physical well being. Even physical suffering due to major illnesses has been made manageable due to the modern day drugs and targeted therapies.
While on one hand our physical health and material life has improved beyond one’s imagination, we are also witnessing a rise in the number of suicides, mental disturbances as well as psychological disturbances amongst men as well as women. Many believe that women are prone to emotional disturbances due to their innate sensitivity and emotional nature. But we are beginning to see a rise in psychological cases in men too.
While women may be sensitive and prone to mental illness, they have an innate resilience and ability to overcome and get over their illness and fight back. In case of men however, there is a tendency to bottle up emotions and a certain lack of emotional sensitivity drives them towards despair and towards material abuse and thus they often lose their capability to bounce back and get well.
Depression in men can result at different phases of life and due to several factors. Normally in cases of childhood depression in children above ten years of age, emotional and sexual abuse, exposure to violence, poverty, lack of love and support from parents and the absence of a loving home and family are seen to trigger depression. Children who are subject to repeated and prolonged period of suffering with no hope or reprieve tend to turn aggressive or depressive depending upon the personality. The cases of childhood disturbances can be profiled in terms of community, race, education level and income groups as well. Emotional disturbances and lack of love often cause long lasting damage to the psyche of boys who’s character gets shaped with the imprint of their psyche. Thus we see cases of many men who are not normal and have irrational personalities.
When men find it difficult to cope with the demands of relationships and family and find it difficult to meet with the challenges of the day to day living, many tend to take to drinking and smoking believing that it gives them some sort of escape from having to face the reality and this over a period of time become addictive habits. When drinking becomes a regular habit, man loses control over his senses and his inebriation becomes his normal self, affecting his relationship and life. Slowly drinking takes a toll and the individual loses his job , money as well as relationships . Depression, suicidal tendencies and other forms of escapism take control over him.
Even in older men who look well settled and happy we can see an underlying depression in many cases. Most often men tend to suffer within and are not able to face their emotions. Disappointments and lack of love especially in their relationships and failures in life can cause unseen depression and consequent health issues in older men.
Access to physical health management alone does not solve the problems and ensure men’s health management. Overall health management would need to look at the management of the emotional health and wellbeing as well. The causes and the sensitivity to mental health issues can be quite different in case of men from that of women. Awareness of mental health and physical health needs can help individuals prepare and manage themselves better.