What Is Depression?

Reasons for Depression:

Lots of things influence whether a person gets depressed. Some of it is biology — things like our Genes affects us all, brain makeup, and hormones. Some is environment we live in, including daylight timing and seasons, or social and family situations & affairs we face on a day to day basis. And some are personality traits, like how we react to life events or the support systems we create for ourselves. All these things can help shape whether or not a person becomes depressed.   

Genes:

Research has shown that depression runs in families. Some people inherit genes & traits that contribute to depression. But not everyone who has a family member with depression will develop it. And many people with no family history of depression still get depressed and some extreme syndrome. So genes are one factor, but they aren’t the only reason for depression for the entire population.

Brain Makeup & Chemistry:

Chemicals called neuro-transmitters help send messages between nerve cells in the brain. Some neurotransmitters regulate mood and certain traits of human emotions. When a person is depressed, these neurotransmitters might be in low supply or not effective enough to get rid of the depressing situation at all.

Genes and brain chemistry makeup can be connected: Having the genes for depression may make a person more likely to have the neurotransmitter problem that is part of depression.

Health,Stress and Hormones:

Stress, using addictive substances and consistent Medication, and hormone changes also affect the brain’s delicate chemistry and mood.

Some health conditions may cause depression-like symptoms. For example, caused by thyroid glands and called (Hypothyroidism)  is known to cause a depressed mood for some people.

It can drain a person’s energy and strength. When health conditions are diagnosed and treated by a doctor, the depression-like symptoms usually disappear.

Getting enough sleep and regular exercise often has a positive effect on the symptoms along with activity and mood.

Seasons and Daylight:

Daylight affects how the brain produces melatonin and serotonin. These neurotransmitters help regulate a person’s sleep–wake cycles, energy, and mood. When there is less daylight, the brain produces more melatonin. When there is more daylight, the brain makes more serotonin.

Shorter days and longer hours of darkness in fall and winter may lead the body to have more melatonin and less serotonin. This imbalance is what creates the conditions for depression in some people — a condition known as Seasonal affective disorder (SAD):

Exposure to light can help improve mood for people affected by SAD.

Life Events:

The Death of a family member, friend, or pet sometimes goes beyond normal grief and leads to depression. Other difficult life events, such as when parents divorce, separate, or remarry, can trigger depression.

Whether or not difficult life situations lead to depression can depend a lot on how well a person is able to cope, stay positive, and receive support.

Social Environment and Family Matters:

For some people, a negative, stressful, or unhappy family atmosphere can lead to depression. Other high-stress living situations, such as poverty, homelessness, or violence, can contribute, too.

Dealing with bullies, harassment, or Peer pressure leaves some people feeling isolated and alone, victimized, or insecure. Situations like these don’t necessarily lead to depression, but facing them without relief or support can make it easier to become depressed.

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Melatonin & serotonin:

Your levels of melatonin are boosted when it’s dark, whereas serotonin levels increase in sunshine and light environments. In short, melatonin helps you get to sleep and serotonin helps you feel awake when you get up the next day

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Seasonal affective disorder (SAD):

some scientists think that certain hormones made deep in the brain trigger attitude-related changes at certain times of year. Experts believe that SAD may be related to these hormonal changes. One theory is that less sunlight during fall and winter leads to the brain making less serotonin, a chemical linked to brain pathways that regulate mood. When nerve cell pathways in the brain that regulate mood don’t function normally, the result can be feelings of depression, along with symptoms of fatigue and weight gain.