A new study by the World Bank has revealed that 22 per cent of Nigerians, on average, are chronically depressed. The study looked at the first nationally representative estimates of chronic depression in Nigeria to shed light on how it may be linked to economic outcomes, such as Labour market and human capital investments, especially in heavy-conflict areas or for individuals or communities who have experienced shocks or deaths.
Chronic depression, according to the report, is strongly associated with adverse events, especially conflict, and these events are positively associated with chronic depression but their effects vary. “For example, less than 30 per cent of household heads who are affected by a family death or a community shock (such as droughts) are chronically depressed. This contrasts with more than 50 per cent of household heads affected by conflicts; this rate of depression is more than twice the national average,” it said.
There are strong socioeconomic gradients at play with respect to chronic depression, the World Bank’s behavioural sciences team in the Poverty and Equity Global Practice said.