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Depressed Women Likely To Indulge In Eating, Men Turn To Pornography – How Can Therapy Help?

Update Date: Jan 21, 2017 09:51 AM EST

A study revealed that men and women cope with depression differently. Women are likely to turn to comfort eating, while men may indulge in sex or pornography.  Choosing the right approach in therapy can make a difference in their battle with depression.

The findings presented at the annual conference of the British Psychological Society's Division of Clinical Psychology in Liverpool said that during therapy, men prefer quick fixes while women like to talk about their feelings. The study also finds that men commit suicide more than women, but men do not seek psychological help as much as women.

John Barry of University of College London said that therapy does not appeal to men so much because psychological interventions are more on talking rather than fixing problems. Though releasing their emotions or thoughts is still beneficial to men, they are put off with the idea that that's just the goal of the therapy.

Kyle MacDonald, a psychotherapist based in Auckland, said that there is a need to avoid stereotyping patients who are depressed. An ideal therapy should be tailored according to the difficulty they are going through. Still, men can maximize the benefit of therapy when they learn how to talk about their feelings.

The study that also included looking into 350 members of the public confirmed that men want informal groups focused on getting and giving advice. In addition to talking about their feelings, women also like to talk about past events.

Depression affects around 16 million Americans every year. Tina Walch, a psychiatrist and chief medical director of South Oaks Hospital in Amityville, NY said that feeling sad is not the same as being depressed. The feeling of sadness is usually temporary while depression is long lasting. Walch said that people experiencing symptoms of depression should not hesitate to seek therapy.

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