12 Surprising Causes of Depression:
- Rx medications: Depression is a side effect of many medications.
- Birth Control Pills: Like any medication, the Pill can have side effects. Oral contraceptives contain a synthetic version of progesterone, which studies suggest can lead to depression in some women.
- Poor Sibling Relationships: Although unhappy relationships with anyone can cause depression, a 2007 study in the American Journal of Psychiatry found that men who didn’t get along with their siblings before age 20 were more likely to be depressed later in life than those who did.
- Lack of fish in the diet: Low intake of omega-3 fatty acids, found in salmon and vegetable oils, may be associated with a greater risk of depression.
- Too many choices: The sheer number of options available—whether it’s face cream, breakfast cereal, or appliances—can be overwhelming. That’s not a problem for shoppers who pick the first thing that meets their needs, according to some psychologists. However, some people respond to choice overload by maximizing, or exhaustively reviewing their options in the search for the very best item. Research suggests that this coping style is linked to perfectionism and depression.
- Where you live: You can endlessly debate whether city or country life is better. But research has found that people living in urban settings do have a 39 percent higher risk of mood disorders than those in rural regions. A 2011 study in the journal Nature offers an explanation for this trend: City dwellers have more activity in the part of the brain that regulates stress. And higher levels of stress could lead to psychotic disorders.
- End of a TV show or movie: When something important comes to an end, like a TV show, movie, or a big home renovation, it can trigger depression in some people.
- Facebook Overload: Spending too much time in chat rooms and on social-networking sites? A number of studies now suggest that this can be associated with depression, particularly in teens and preteens.
- Poor Sleep Habits: It’s no surprise that sleep deprivation can lead to irritability, but it could also increase the risk of depression.
- Thyroid Disease: When the thyroid, a butterfly-shaped gland in the neck, doesn’t produce enough thyroid hormone, it’s known as hypothyroidism, and depression is one of its symptoms.
- Smoking: Smoking has long been linked with depression, though it’s a chicken-or-egg scenario: People who are depression-prone may be more likely to take up the habit.
- Summer Weather: Seasonal affective disorder (SAD) is most commonly associated with winter blues, and it afflicts about 5 percent of Americans. But for less than 1 percent of those people, this form of depression strikes in the summer. Warm weather depression arises when the body experiences a “delay adjusting to new seasons,” Dr. Alfred Lewy, professor of psychiatry at Oregon Health and Science University, in Portland, said.
If yourself of someone you know is suffering from depression, call GenPsych at 1-855-GENPSYCH.