"The Lost Connection": Unveiling Depression's Roots and Social Solutions - Review Example

Published: 2024-01-23
"The Lost Connection": Unveiling Depression's Roots and Social Solutions - Review Example
Essay type:  Book review
Categories:  Literature Society Depression Books
Pages: 4
Wordcount: 919 words
8 min read


The health book reviewed is The Lost Connection and Why You're Depressed, and it is written by Johann Hari (Hari, 2018). The book tries to find the root cause of depression in a person while giving the hope of healing. Depression is a mental condition that is defined as a disease of the mood. The book helps us openly discover the causes of depression, whether we are struggling on our own or when our loved ones are suffering. After spending a lifetime taking drugs to treat depression, Johann Hari wrote the book where he had initially believed it was a biological problem. The author had initially thought that a chemical imbalance triggered depression in the brain. After more study, he was surprised to discover how wrong his reasoning was based on his research.

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Approximately 50 percent of the trigger of depression was placebo (Hari, 2018). Research has shown that witnessing something very upsetting is what is most likely to cause depression. Therefore, the author emphasized that depression is not only an issue induced by the unwell functioning of the brain but is a consequence of life going unwell (Hari, 2018). His conclusion was, therefore, that there is little evidence to relate depression to chemical imbalance. Lost Connection elaborates on why more people are suffering from depression, stressing that strengthening our friendship rather than taking medicine is the best way to conquer the disorder.

John Hari discusses the little-known side of depression and anxiety. He seeks the easiest way to treat depression without actually taking drugs. The author argues that depression is not a biological illness but is induced by the society we live in and our psychological world (Hari, 2018). Hari discusses nine causes of depression, intending to disable the old chemical imbalance hypothesis, where he believes that drug firms are promoting the theory with the intention of selling their products.

Causes of Depression According to the Author

Disconnection from Meaningful Work

According to the author, people who suffer job losses or loss of power and authority at their workplace are likely to experience depression. The research on the rise in the number of suicide incidences in the workplace has shown that a significant number of these people have lost control of the workplace, which has led to psychological health issues resulting in depression (Judd, 1994). Depression is reduced when people do meaningful work.

Disconnect from Others

When people become lonely or collapse, they have no sense of belonging to others and are likely to suffer from depression. Lonely people are very anxious and have low self-esteem where they are pessimistic and worry that others may not like them. Therefore the author believed that those who thought they had become disconnected from their loves had become radically more depressed.

Disconnect from Meaningful Values

Most people who suffer from depression have assumed that happiness is the product of possession of items and superior status. When these people are removed from real ideals, they end up depressed. Materialistic people are likely to lose meaningful values and have shorter and lower relationships which leads to depression.

Childhood Trauma

People who have endured childhood trauma are more likely to suffer from depression and anxiety. Research has shown that parents' emotional violence toward children is likely to lead to depression when they become adults (Felitti, 1998). The author's understanding of depression is, therefore, a natural reaction to abnormal life experiences.

Disconnect from Status

Places where there are more significant differences in income are likely to have a high incidence of depression. When individuals are lower in their group in terms of hierarchy, they are more likely to be depressed. Having a precarious status is one of the aspects that is more distressing than having a low status.

The Author's Solution to Deal with Depression

The author comes up with a social prescription to cope with depression rather than people turning to drugs. He assumes that when people reconnect with others, have satisfying jobs, and meaningful beliefs, and resolve traumatic events, depression will be minimized. Hari claims that antidepressants do not work for most people, and therefore looking at alternative means of social prescription would be vital in helping suicidal people. Hari, therefore, supports the use of a social prescription component, primarily by looking at a person's root cause of depression and attempting to treat it from there.

Brief Synopsis About the Book

Most physicians prescribe antidepressants without even knowing why the patient is depressed, which is not right. If a doctor first inquires about the cause of depression, they would find some contributing factors, such as traumatic heartbreaks agonizing in a person and secret wounds from physical violence that the person had been suffering during childhood (Barkil, 2013). Antidepressants should be used under special situations where the analysis has shown that they should be used. It is also essential to eliminate narcotics to treat drugs and other social methods of coping with the problem.


Barkil, A. (2013). Collaborative care for depression in primary care: How psychiatry could "troubleshoot" current treatments and practices. Yale J Biol Med. 13;86(2):139–46 https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC3670434/

Felitti, V. (1998). Relationship of childhood abuse and household dysfunction to many of the leading causes of death in adults. The Adverse Childhood Experiences (ACE) Study. https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/9635069/

Hari, J. (2018). Lost Connections: Why You're Depressed and How to Find Hope. Bloomsbury Publishers, USA. ISBN-13 : 978-1632868305 https://kimtasso.com/book-review-lost-connections-why-youre-depressed-and-how-to-find-hope-by-johann-hari/

Judd, L. (1994). Sub-syndrome symptomatic depression: A new mood disorder? The Journal of Clinical Psychiatry, 55(4, Suppl), 18–28. https://psycnet.apa.org/record/1994-41269-001

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