Depression Treatment and Mental Health Nursing

Depression is a well-recognized psychological condition that is experienced by several people at some point in their lives. As with other mental disorders, depression requires medical attention as it may evolve into a life-threatening condition.

However, treatment of depression, as well as other mental illnesses, is greatly affected by the stigma of mental illness, which prevents people from seeking help (Knaus & Ellis, 2012). Mental health care delivery faces other issues, such as ethnic disparities among minority populations, which also have to be addressed. While the trend in mental health care delivery is to improve the quality of care and provide culturally and linguistically competent care to minimize disparities, the major goal of the industry is overcoming the stigma surrounding mental illnesses such as depression.

This stigma is the reason why Karen refused to discuss her mental health with her family, friends, and co-workers. It is likely that Karen felt ashamed of her condition or thought it was not something so serious she had to talk about with others. Depression occurs for a variety of reasons, and in the case of Karen, a major change in her personal life triggered the symptoms of depression.

Even though Karen was not open about her feelings with family and friends, she did recognize that she needed professional help. Besides, even before Karen sought professional help, she had joined a gym program for workouts and a social group for young men and women. This fact suggests that Karen is motivated to feel better and is looking for ways to overcome her current situation. Her biggest strength is the fact that she is aware of her health care needs. The psychiatric nurse can assess whether Karen had made progress towards self-realization by asking her, whether she is dating other men and if she is feeling enthusiastic about her job.


Knaus, W., & Ellis, A. (2012). The Cognitive Behavioral Workbook for Depression: A Step-by-Step Program. Oakland: New Harbinger Publications.