Salsa is an answer to the blues

An epidemic is sweeping the Western world. One in five of us is already suffering the symptoms and the numbers are set to grow. And what is this rampant disease? Bird flu? Obesity? No. Depression. Russell Jones, a mental health nurse writing in Nursing Times (Sept 26), says that dire warnings from the World Health Organisation about the growing prevalence of depression mean that nurses must be extra vigilant about screening patients.

But he questions whether we are right to be so alarmed. Pharmaceutical companies make huge profits from anti-depressants, he says, while research creates ever more complex types of depression.

“Surely the key should be to look at the whole person over time and accept the vital roles that friends, family, faith, music, art and exercise can play in recovery.”

Acknowledging the distressing nature of depression, he points out that in a society obsessed with quick fixes, “the pressure to diagnose and prescribe often prevails”.

But a study at the University of Derby recenlty showed that Salsa dancing may help tackle depression. After nine weeks of dance classes participants recorded lower depression scores. Matt Birks, senior lecturer in mental health said salso could be an alternative therapy.

Source - Times