One in ten adults in Europe pops anti-depressants, according to this story that looks at (yet another) study of depression and finds those in their late forties to be in the worst mental health:
5.5million adults in the UK were on anti-depressants at some point last year.
Middle-aged women who were unemployed, divorced or separated were the most likely to pop the pills.
Co-author Andrew Oswald of the University of Warwick, said: ‘As we live in the richest and safest era in the history of humans, perhaps we are going to have to ask ourselves why one in ten of Europe’s middle-aged citizens need a pill to cope with life.
‘That is an awful lot of people relying on chemical happiness.’
The scientists said that the results supported the hypothesis that most of us experience well-being in life as a U-shape. So we start and end our lives relatively content but become bogged down by stresses and strains at work and home leading to a mid-life crisis.
Professor Oswald told the MailOnline: ‘It may be that when you are young you begin happily optimistic but with impossible aspirations.
‘So you aim to win Wimbledon or perhaps to make enough money to live in Wimbledon.
‘Yet once out there in the world, by your middle-age you discover how tough things are. You face failures and have to retract some of their ambitions, which is painful.
‘You then enter a midlife low but eventually, by your late 40s and early 50s, you learn to relinquish some of their dreams.
‘By facing up to and accepting their imperfections, you gradually can begin to become happier into their 60s and beyond.’