Is Depression Genetic?

Is Depression Genetic

Depression is a common mental health condition that can affect many people around the world. Therefore, you may have the experience of seeing your family member suffering from depression. So, have you ever wondered if you also can experience depression in the future?

Well. Even though genetics can have an impact on getting depression, they are not always the reason behind your depression because it is essential to know that anyone can have depression disorder even though no one else in your family does.

So how to tell if genes are linked with your depression? If this is on your mind, you are at the right place to know everything you need to know about depression and its link with genetics.

Read on to find out!

What is depression?

Depression can be described as a mental health disorder that can affect the way you think, feel and do your day-to-day life activities. The way people experience depression is different from one person to another.

An individual with depression can have constant feelings and emotions of sadness, helplessness, hopelessness, and losing interest in everything.

As we mentioned earlier, depression is quite common among us, resulting in many physical and emotional problems and even death. We will now see the possible causes of depression and the major topic of our article if genes can cause depression.

Is depression genetic?

If your family has a history of depression, there is a higher risk of getting the disorder. But how do you know exactly that you get depression due to genetics?

Moreover, identical twins have 100% of their genes, and non-identical twins have 50%. So if the genes can cause depression, identical twins are at a higher risk of having diseases than non-identical twins.

Medical experts have researched to find out what kind of role genes play in depression. Finally, they have been found out that in most situations of depression, around 50% of the cause of depression is genetics, and approximately 50% of the cause of depression is other causes such as physical and psychological.

What are the other causes of depression?

  • Environmental factors of depression
  • Social or psychological factors
  • Depression due to medical health conditions
  • Brain chemistry

To know more about above factors, read this article.

What are the signs of genetic depression?

  • Regular feelings of anger, sad, helpless and hopeless
  • Losing interest in all activities and people around you
  • Negative feelings about yourself and others
  • Sleeping pattern changes
  • Eating habit changes
  • Getting suicidal thoughts
  • Ignoring loved ones
  • Having relationship complications
  • Lacking the energy and interest to engage with day to day life work such as personal and working life
  • Lacking motivation

What can you do if you or someone you know have genetic depression?

As we mentioned before, if your family has a history of depressive disorder, you must be concern more about yourself and other loved ones. Here is how you can be diagnosed and treated for depression.

Depression can be diagnosed with physical examinations, lab tests, or psychiatric evaluations, and it can be treated and cured with medications or psychotherapy or in some situations by both of them.

There are some other treatments such as high functioning depression treatments, hospital or home treatments, Electroconvulsive therapy (ECT) treatments, or Transcranial magnetic stimulation (TMS) can also be done to treat depression. Check out this article for more information about depression treatment.

Make sure that you discuss with your doctor if the current plan for depression treatment is not working for you or your loved ones because depression can lead to death if someone does not get proper care and medications.

What is genetic predisposition?

A genetic predisposition, also known as biological predisposition, is a higher chance of developing disease or pattern of behavior based on the genetics we inherited from our parents and also from our parents’ parents.

If someone has a depression disorder family history, they are likely to have a higher risk of getting depression. So, if your parent or sibling has major depression disorder, you probably have a 2 or 3 times higher risk of developing depression than the average person with around 20% or 30%.

But genetic predisposition will not always lead to developing disorders. It is important to remember that genetics can sometimes protect us from getting and developing certain health disorders.

Final Thoughts

Depression is a relatively common mental health condition that can be cured entirely with proper medications. If genetics can have an impact on depression is a popular question that anyone can have. Health experts have found that genes can cause depression.

So, if your family has a history of depressive disorder, there is a chance of you also getting depression. But this does not mean you will experience depression due to genes only. There are many other causes of depression, as we mentioned in this article.

  1. Overview of the Genetics of Major Depressive Disorder: https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC3077049/
  2. Genetic determinants of depression: Recent findings and future directions: https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC4309382/
  3. How Genetics Can Play a Role in Depression: https://www.verywellmind.com/is-depression-genetic-1067317

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