Apr 04 2007

Who gets depressed?

Published by at 6:49 pm under Counseling & Psychotherapy

As many as 16% of all americans will experience depression during their lifetime.

Children and Adolescents experience the same symptoms of depression as adults. It is estimated that about 2 million adolescents are depressed. Depressed adolescents are more prone to commit suicide, which as become epidemic over the last 50 years. Depression may be more difficult to diagnose with children and often requires interviews with parents and other family members. Neglect, abuse and inconsistent parenting are associated with childhood and adolescent depression.

Women are 2x more likely than men to become depressed. This may be related to hormonal changes brought on by puberty, menstrual cycles, pregnancy, and menopause. Psychological factors related to abuse, neglect, trauma may also be related to the high rate of depression.
Men experience a lower risk of depression, but are more likely to go undiagnosed and untreated. Men’s depression is often acted out as anger and rage and masked by alcohol and drug abuse. Suicide is an especially serious risk for men as they are 4x more likey to kill themselves than women.

Elderly are also at a serious risk of depression. They may lose a loved one, become sick, be unable to care for themselves, and their symptoms of depression may be misunderstood as the natural progression of aging. As a result, they may not receive any treatment for depression.

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