Black dog: the future pandemic?


  • Muthukumar T. Department of Community Medicine, Shri Sathya Sai Medical College and Research Institute, Ammapettai, Kancheepuram, Tamil Nadu
  • Raja T. K. Department of Community Medicine, Chettinad Hospital & Research Institute, Kelambakkam, Tamil Nadu



Black dog, Depression, Mental health care act


Depression is sometimes referred to as the “Black Dog”. Just like a real dog, it needs to be embraced, understood, taught new tricks, and ultimately brought to heel. Depression is a common illness worldwide, with more than 300 million people affected; it is different from usual mood fluctuations and short-lived emotional responses to challenges in everyday life. It can cause the affected person to suffer greatly and function poorly at work, at school and in the family. At its worst, depression can lead to suicide. Depression is the leading cause of ill health and disability worldwide. An increase of more than 18% between 2005 and 2015 makes depression a real global threat.


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Mental Health. World Health Organ. Available at: Accessed on 26 September 2017.

Depression and Other Common Mental Disorders: Global Health Estimates. Geneva: World Health Organization; 2017. Licence: CC BY-NC-SA 3.0 IGO.

Depression. World Health Organ. Available at: Accessed on 26 September 2017.

The Mental Health Care Act, 2017. Available at: Health/Mental%20Healthcare%20Act,%202017.pdf. Accessed on 26 September 2017.






Letter to the Editor