The Disease of Despair

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recent study showed that more Americans are dying from “diseases of despair” than ever before.

What is a disease of despair? It is a condition brought upon by “a bleak economic or social outlook.” It’s when people feel so low by life that they turn to drugs, alcohol and suicide because they can’t see a way out.

The study showed that these things were the main factors contributing to a drop of life expectancy. The rate of despair-related diseases were all up by a lot.

Consider this:

“Suicidal thoughts and behavior among minors jumped by 287% between 2009 and 2018. During that same period, those tendencies increased by 210% among 18 to 34 year olds. Alcohol-related diagnoses spiked by 37% within that decade, while substance-related diagnoses skyrocket by 94%.”

Experts point out that this is different from momentary depression.

“It’s important to emphasize that ‘despair’ does not merely refer to an aberrant internal state but is rather the consequence of a particular set of political-economic and cultural conditions that are producing distress,” said the study’s co-author.

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