Causes of Depression
Your risk for developing depression increases when there is a family history of the illness. The risk is somewhat higher for those with bipolar disorder. Not everybody with a family history develops the illness. Also, major depression can occur in people who have had no family members with the illness. This suggests that additional factors are involved in the onset of depression.
Evidence indicates that brain biochemistry is a significant factor in depressive disorders. For example, individuals with major depressive illness typically have too little or too much of certain brain chemicals, called neurotransmitters. Sleep patterns, which are biochemically influenced, are typically different in people with mood disorders.
Depression can be induced or alleviated with certain medications, and some hormones have mood-altering properties.
Environmental and Other Stressors.
Significant loss, a difficult relationship, financial problems, or a major change in life pattern have all been cited as contributors to depressive illness. Sometimes the onset of depression is associated with acute or chronic physical illness. In addition, some form of substance abuse disorder occurs in about one third of people with any type of depressive disorder.
Persons with certain traits-- pessimistic thinking, low self-esteem, a sense of having little control over life events, and proneness to excessive worrying-- are at a higher risk to develop depression. Upbringing or sex role expectations may contribute to the development of these traits. Negative thinking patterns are typically believed to develop in childhood or adolescence.
We can classify these under mind, body and spirit. This classification is courtesy Robert Ivker, author of "The Complete Self-Care Guide to Holistic Medicine."
BODY: Physical and Environmental
MIND: Mental and Emotional
SPIRIT: Spiritual and Social
Source: Complete Selfcare Guide to Holistic Medicine by R S Ivker
See Also: Drugs that Can Cause Depression
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