Dr. Bunmi Oluwagbami, a Consultant Neuropsychiatrist with the Federal Neuro-Psychiatric Hospital Yaba, has advised Nigerians to take care of their mental health to avoid depression.
Oluwagbami, who is also a Cognitive Behavioural Therapist, told the Newsmen on Friday in Lagos that engaging in positive activities that give happiness, while avoiding anger could help prevent depression.
She said that anger produces a physiological crash, saying that the angrier one got, the more depressed one would get.
According to her, anger elevates blood pressure, increases the threat of stroke, heart diseases, cancer, depression, anxiety, and in general depresses the immune system.
“Angry people have a lot of little aches, pains or get a lot of colds, headaches, and stomach upset.
“The health effects of anger have more to do with duration than frequency and intensity,’’ she said.
She, therefore, warned that Nigerians should strive to avoid anger as consistent prolonged levels of anger could result in a higher risk of dying before the age of 50.
The neuropsychiatrist said there cannot be health without mental health, saying one should be surrounded by positive people for well being.
She urged Nigerians to share their thoughts with positive people to enhance their mental health.
“Constantly surrounding yourself with positive people will help manage depression and stress. Buying expensive clothes, jewellery will not bring permanent happiness.
“We need to create time for relaxation and look beyond the economic situation of the country; we need to focus on positive things in every bad situation,’’ Oluwagbami advised.
She said that being happy had an impact on one’s level of productivity at the workplace, adding that happiness also impacts the relationship with people.
She noted that being happy could help one enhance blood pressure levels and lengthen one’s lifespan.
“If someone is in a happy state of mind then there would be fewer troubles and stress, if someone is unhappy there will be depression, suicidal thoughts, anxiety and stress disorder.
“Depression is a significant problem that has affected some youths which have made them be drug addicts.
“Drug addiction is being experimented with due to the poor state of mental health, which seeks temporary pleasure and satisfaction,” she said.