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Genetics Isn’t the Sole Reason You Have Depression — Here Are Other Contributing Factors

Have you ever wondered why some people are depressed while others aren’t? Millions are affected by this mental health problem and if you’re one of them, let’s talk about this disorder that causes feelings of hopelessness, sadness, and emptiness.


Science has found that genetics plays a role in developing depression. However, there’s no known specific gene that causes it. Instead, experts believe that many genes, which you get from your parents, are likely to increase your risk of acquiring the disorder. — Genetics plays a role in the development of depression

For example, if you have a sibling or a parent who suffers from depression, then you have a 20 to 30 percent greater chance of developing the mental health problem as opposed to the average person’s 10 percent. A lot of several twin studies have shown that heritability has a hand in the development of this mental health problem.

Other Factors

Apart from genetics, there are several risk factors for depression, psychiatrist Renee Witlen said. A 2015 study found that out of the 349 chronically depressed participants, 76 percent experienced childhood trauma like physical and emotional abuse.

Fizkes/Shutterstock — Childhood trauma can lead to depression

Financial matters can also contribute to your risk of developing depression. According to a Centers for Disease Control and Prevention survey, as adults’ income increases, the less that they suffer from this disorder. As such, worrying too much about debts, bills, and bankruptcy may be wreaking havoc to your mental health more than you know.

Substance abuse can also become a factor, as per a 2009 meta-analysis. It was revealed that around half of women and a quarter of men participants who have alcohol use disorder are also depressed.

Damir Khabirov/Shutterstock — Financial issues can be so stressful

Always being socially isolated can also affect our mental health. According to a 2017 study of 2,000 adults, those who felt that they’re cut out from the rest of the world were more depressed. As such, there’s no wonder why many people suffered from depression during the lockdown period.


As such, depression is definitely not caused by only one factor. Your genes are not a guarantee that you will be depressed but it only puts you at a higher risk. Lifestyle and environmental factors may also be the reason you are suffering from the mental health disorder.

If you do feel that you’re spiraling down this path or are currently struggling with several emotions, it is always best to seek professional help as they can tell you what’s going on or reach out to a family member or friend. Psychiatrists and psychotherapists will also suggest the best course of treatment for you and will recommend the best lifestyle changes you will need.

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