Causes and Treatments
What causes depression?
There is no single known cause. But a number of causes are thought to play a role, including:
- Brain chemistry – People with depression often have different chemical levels in their brains than those without it.
- Family history – Some types of depression run in families, but people can suffer from it without a family history.
- Medical causes or brain injury – Certain health problems such as a brain tumor or a brain injury can also cause depression.
What are the treatments for depression?
Like many other illnesses, depression is treatable and is best caught early. If you suspect your mood is more than passing sadness, you should visit your doctor. The doctor will carry out an exam and may prescribe medicine.
Depression can sometimes be treated with antidepressants and psychotherapy (“talk therapy”). It may take time to find the right mixture of drugs and therapy to see results. Be sure to tell your doctor how you’re feeling and be open to other types of care to find the one that works for you.
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Sources: American Psychiatry Association, 2010; National Institute of Mental Health, 2010