What you’ll find when you Google “depression”

Google has partnered up with an unexpected ally: the National Alliance on Mental Illness. Together, they’re rolling out a cool new feature to point depressed people toward help.

Starting this week, when you use a mobile device to search “depression” or something similar, here’s what you’ll see:

If you click on the link to check if you’re depressed, it will first bring up this screen:

and then will walk you through the nine questions of the PHQ-9 Questionnaire–the one medical professionals use to diagnose depression:

Select your answers for each question, and you’ll see your results:

I love that the new feature emphasizes that depression is common and treatable. Right now, only a fraction of people suffering from depression are receiving appropriate care. I hope as more people understand that the condition is treatable, the number of people seeking care will grow. The understanding of how common depression is should help, too, with reducing the stigma surrounding mental illness. If you know your condition is shared by millions of Americans, you’re less likely to be ashamed and more likely to acknowledge your problem enough to seek help.

Good move, Google and NAMI!

Satu Woodland is owner and clinician of Mental Health Solutions, an integrative mental health practice located at Bown Crossing in Boise, Idaho. She sees children, adolescents, and adults. Information in this blog is not intended as medical advice. Please consult your health care provider about decisions regarding your health.

Leave a Reply