What are the triggers and causes of depression?
Current research shows that there is no single cause for mental health conditions - multiple factors are usually involved. Let's explore some of the factors that may increase the risk of developing depression.
Genetic predisposition or family history of depression is a significant factor. Heritability for Major Depressive Disorder is around 40%.
Depression is more likely to occur alongside with certain illnesses, such as heart disease, cancer, Parkinson's disease, diabetes, Alzheimer's disease
Biological factors such as imbalances in brain chemistry and the endocrine/immune systems plus side effects of some medications could become a significant cause of low mood, lack of energy and other depressive symptoms
In some cases, the key factors may be directly related to the environment, including major stresses or adverse childhood experiences (trauma, abuse etc.).
Research shows that "minority stress" (belonging to a minority) is also a significant risk factor for various mental health disorders.
Psychological or emotional vulnerability to depression, including temperamental factors (e.g. neuroticism) may also play a significant role
It is important to keep in mind that, irrespective of underlying conditions and other factors, everybody who struggles with depression deserves support, help and understanding.