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Depression of Degrassi: The Next Generation

Degrassi: The Next Generation and depression do not exactly coalesce or manifest in any semblance of an accurate representation of the modern exhibition of the disease. Although the trend of depression displays an increasing correlation with the income of time and technology, Degrassi’s depiction falls many yards short of the concurrent uprights. In the process of highlighting all streams and blips that affect modern youth, Degrassi’s sparse coverage of depression steps out of line with their majorly consistent toeing the lines of mental wellness.

Depression is More Complicated than Degrassi Depicts

One major problem presented is that depression does not persist as a major enough problem in the actual show. Depression comes in many forms. Yet, Degrassi: The Next Generation adequately addresses only one, major depressive disorder.

This image comes to us in the form of Campbell Saunders, an aspiring young hockey star. Considered the key prospect from Degrassi’s Toronto Ice Hounds team. His career already achieves acclaim from the public. While he embarks on conquering adolescence he experiences pressure in the social, academic, and athletic realms of high school. The most crushing of which remains the social pressures. He laments “How am I supposed to survive a whole season here? I have no friends, my hockey team hates me, my family is thousands of miles away, and I’m crying in the girls bathroom,” in “Say it Ain’t So(2).” At this particular moment, he finds himself with no discernible bearings. In a new environment with no friends or family.

He expresses utter hopelessness as the environment he inhabits chokes away all outlets for healthy socialization. Unfortunately the directors decide against arming Campbell with the proper tools for battling the menace of depression. He resorts to committing suicide as Degrassi: The Next Generation’s fails in the delivery of treating depression.

man stress out and cover his face by his hands

Coping with Depression is Possible

Do not take this example as an honest portrayal of coping with major depressive disorder. Please expect further material on other forms of depression in later articles. Proper treatment of depression entails medication, psychotherapy and possibly hospital treatment according to the Mayo Clinic. The source underscores the following types of medications as effective in combating depression: Selective serotonin reuptake inhibitors (SSRIs), Serotonin-norepinephrine reuptake inhibitors (SNRIs),  Atypical antidepressants, Tricyclic Antidepressants, and Monoamine oxidase inhibitors (MAOIs). Aside from medications, talk therapy also remains a weapon proven useful against this disease. If all else fails do not shirk away from hospital treatment, this often prevents cases like Campbell’s. 

1 Out of 5 Stars For Degrassi and Depression

Though Degrassi: The Next Generation offers a wealth of positive examples pertaining to processes against mental illness, depression is not one of these examples. In the direction and example of Degrassi: The Next Generation a few statements must be made as an afterthought. First, multiple characters undergo phases of sadness or mood change, only one of these was chalked up to depression, and still the diagnosis is relatively ambiguous. Second, major depressive disorder though the most populous of cases is not the only type of depression. Third, suicide is not the only outcome. Fourth, and most important is that this illness is treatable and surmountable, meaning that one does not have to suffer from this alone or forever. Overall Degrassi: The Next Generation receives 1 out 5 stars for its portrayal of the realistic forms of depression.

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