Stress And Depression: Causes And Contributing Factors

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Stress depression is depression with a clear aspect of stress involved in its onset.  Stressful events often precede the development of depression in individuals who are affected by them.  This does not necessarily mean that the stressful event caused the depression, but it does warrant a closer look.  It leads one to wonder what role stress does play in depression.

Does Stress Cause Depression?

The answer to this question is unclear.  There does seem to be a correlation between periods of great stress and the onset of depression, but this is not always the case.

Everyone experiences stressful periods in life and stressful events, but not everyone develops depression.  This indicates that if there is a chain of causality here, it is not a direct one.  Stress on its own does not appear to cause depression.

A Combination Of Factors

It seems more likely that stress causes depression when other forces are also at play.  A family history of depression is one such force.  This possibility of a genetic predisposition would make an individual vulnerable to depression and the stressful event could simply push them into a full blown case of depression.

Similarly, someone with a bleak outlook on life may be more vulnerable.  An individual with a pessimistic attitude regarding life in general would be more susceptible to the effects of stress.  If low self-esteem were thrown into the mix as well then stress, or any precipitating factor, would seem much more likely to lead to depression.

Stress And Chronic Depression

Chronic stress can lead to depression.  The constant bombardment of stress over an extended period of time can wear a person down physically and mentally, making them a likely candidate for the development of depression.

Extended periods of stress leave individuals more vulnerable to a whole host of health problems beyond depression.  The application of stress to a person for a lengthy period of time weakens their mental health and their spiritual health, leaving them with weakened defences against anything that might come along.  If they also possess the risk factors for depression then its development is that much closer to being a sure thing.

Stress related depression states that there is a link between these two states.  The link may not be entirely clear but it appears that either one can leave one vulnerable to the other.  Only by exploring this link further can the complete role of stress in depression be found and, hopefully, prevented.

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