What Causes Depression

While we do not know exactly what might lead to depression, which is several things that are usually linked to its development. Depression might all result from a combination of recent events and other longer-term or personal factors, rather than considering one immediate issue or some event.

Life Events

Research have all suggested that continuing issues – long-term unemployment, living in an abusive or uncaring relationship, long-term isolation or loneliness, among prolonged work stress are all more likely to lead to depression than recent life stresses. However, some of the recent events (including losing a job) or a combination of events can also ‘trigger’ depression in case you are already at risk because of some previous bad experiences or other personal factors.

Personal Factors

  • Family History – Depression-like conditions can run in families and some people might be at enhanced genetic risk. However, having a parent or close relative with depression does not mean you will all automatically have the same experience. Life circumstances and other personal factors are still likely to have an important influence like the condition
  • Personality – Some people might be more at risk of depression condition due to their personality, particularly in case they might tend to worry a lot or might have some low self-esteem, are perfectionists, which are sensitive to personal criticism, or are self-critical and negative
  • Serious Medical Illness – The stress and worry-like condition might be coping with a serious illness that shall lead to depression, especially if you are dealing with long-term management and/or chronic pain
  • Drug And Alcohol Use – Drug and alcohol use might lead to and shall result in depression. Many people with depression-like issues might have drug and alcohol issues. Over 500,000 Australians will experience some level of depression and a substance use disorder at the same time, at some point in their lives

Changes In The Brain

Most modern antidepressants might have an effect on the brain’s chemical transmitters (serotonin and noradrenaline) that might all relay messages between brain cells – this is thought to be how medications might work for severe depression. Psychological treatment can also help you to regulate your moods.

Effective solutions can stimulate the growth of new nerve cells in circuits that shall regulate the mood which is thought to play a critical part in recovering from the most severe episodes of the depression-like condition.

Biological Differences

People with depression-like issues shall appear to have physical alterations in their brains. The significance of these alterations is still uncertain, but it might help some pinpoint causes.

Brain Chemistry

Neurotransmitters are usually occurring brain chemicals which shall play a role in depression. Recent research indicates that alterations in the function and effect of these neurotransmitters and how they might interact with neurocircuits are all involved in sustaining mood stability which might play a significant role in depression and its treatment.


Changes in the body’s balance of hormones might be highly involved in causing or triggering depression-like conditions. Hormonal alterations can result with pregnancy and during the weeks or months after delivery (postpartum) and thyroid problems, menopause, or several other conditions might be the cause.

Inherited Traits

Depression is known to be more common in people whose blood relatives might have this condition. Researchers are further trying to find some genes that might be all involved in causing depression issues in people.


Everyone’s different and it’s often a combination of factors that shall all contribute to developing depression. It is also important for remembering that you cannot always identify the cause of depression or alterations in circumstances. The most important thing is to further recognize the signs and symptoms and seek proper support.

Risk Factors

Risk factors for conditions like depression can be biochemical, social, medical, genetic, or circumstantial. Some of the common risk factors include:

  • Sex: This is the prevalence of major depression which is twice as high in females as in men
  • Genetics. You might have an enhanced risk of depression in case you have a family history of it
  • Socioeconomic status. Socioeconomic status, which includes financial problems and perceived low social status, which can enhance the risk of depression
  • Certain Medications. Some drugs might include types of hormonal birth control, corticosteroids, and beta-blockers which shall be well associated with an increased risk of depression
  • Vitamin D Deficiency. Studies have all linked depressive symptoms to low levels of vitamin D
  • Gender Identity. The risk of depression for transgender people shall need 4-fold that of cisgender people, as per a 2018 study
  • Substance Misuse. About 21% of people who might have a substance use disorder also experience the depression-like condition
  • Medical Illnesses. Depression is well associated with other chronic medical illnesses. People with some heart diseases are about twice as likely to have depression as people who do not, while up to 1 in 4 people with cancer might also experience a depression-like condition


There is absolutely no sure way for preventing depression. However, these strategies might help.

  • Take steps to control stress, for enhancing resilience, and boost the self-esteem
  • Reach out to family and friends, especially in times of crisis, for helping you if weather rough spells
  • Get treatment at the earliest sign of an issue to help prevention on depression from worsening
  • Consider getting long-term maintenance treatment for helping to prevent a relapse of symptoms which is needed

Here are some ways to build resilience:

  • Try thinking of change as a challenging and normal part of life. When an issue might crop up, take action to solve it
  • Remind yourself that might be further setbacks and that issues are temporary and solvable. Nothing might last forever
  • Build a support system. Usually, you can ask friends and family for help (or one might just need a shoulder to cry on) when you might need it. Offer might all help when they shall need it. This kind of give and take creates strong relationships that might help people weather life’s storms.

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