Dear Heloise:

Can depression screening make a difference? The answer is definitely yes.

At the last Depression Screening Day, an elderly man was waiting at our doorstep. He had heard about the screening and drove 10 miles early that morning just to be there when the doors opened. He had many health problems, and he vented his anger at the medical establishment for failing to help him.

The man seemed very depressed and had a very high score on both depression and anxiety. He clearly needed to talk and did so for more than an hour with one of our counselors.

The following day, he returned with his wife and met with another counselor. His wife and the counselor listened as he spoke about his depression and other difficult medical problems.

The counselor explained some strategies and resources they could use to make better use of their medical services, including mental-health assistance.

This man's story is a strong reminder of why depression screening is needed and how National Depression Screening Day is there for many people who need help.

Please urge your readers not to give up hope. Call the Site Locator Line, find a screening site and ask for help. Support is out there.

Jim Ayers, Ph.D., L.P.

Clinic Director, Walk-In Counseling Center


Dr. Ayers, thank you for your very touching letter.

To find a depression-screening site near you, just call the Site Locator Line at 800-520-6373 (there are 7,000 sites across the country). These free and ANONYMOUS screenings will be held on Thursday as part of the National Depression Screening Day. The help is out there -- all you need to do is ask!

Dear Heloise:

We had a problem with hair in the shower drain. So I cut a circle the size of the drain cover from grip liner. The liner allows that water to go through easily but stops the hair.

Barbara, via e-mail

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