Depression – What Causes It?

Depression is an illness that can affect your mood, thoughts and behavior. It can also interfere with your sleep, appetite and energy levels. But it is treatable. The first step is to talk to your GP.

You can help yourself by doing things like getting enough sleep, eating a healthy diet, taking up regular exercise and trying to avoid alcohol or drugs. It is also important to find a good support network. You may be able to get help from friends, family and your faith community. It is important to remember that depression can be a symptom of other health problems, such as thyroid problems or a brain tumor, so it is vital to see your GP and rule out these conditions.

There are several types of treatments for depression, including medication and talking therapies. It is often a combination of these that will work best for you. Your doctor can tell you what type of treatment is right for you.

It is common for people who have depression to feel as though they aren’t a “real” person or that they don’t deserve help or recovery. This feeling can be very difficult for loved ones to understand, but it is important to be open and honest with them. It is also important to remember that everyone is different, and just because something doesn’t work for someone else does not mean it won’t work for you.

What causes depression?

It’s been long held that depression is caused by low levels of certain neurotransmitters (chemical messengers that relay messages between nerve cells). However, recent research suggests this idea is not entirely accurate. It’s more likely that genes, environmental factors and a combination of these cause depression.

Certain people are more prone to depression, such as those with a family history of the condition or a history of childhood trauma or abuse. Hormonal changes can also play a role, such as those that occur around the time of menstruation or those that occur when a woman is pregnant or breastfeeding. Other factors that may influence a person’s risk for depression include physical health problems and stressful life events, such as job loss or the death of a loved one.

Regardless of the specific cause, depression can be a serious and debilitating disease. It can cause a wide range of emotional and physical symptoms, from feelings of sadness to thoughts of suicide. Some of these symptoms may be so severe that they threaten a person’s safety or the well-being of others. In these cases, a person may need hospital or residential treatment.

Depression can be a very isolating illness, causing a person to withdraw from their friends and family. Psychotherapy can help a person to reconnect with those who are important to them and can teach them skills to manage depression and overcome it. This kind of therapy can be done on a one-on-one basis or in group settings, such as a support group for those who suffer from depression. Other treatment options for depression may include electroconvulsive therapy, in which electric currents are passed through your brain, and transcranial magnetic stimulation, in which a coil sends magnetic pulses to stimulate nerve cells that regulate mood.