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Depression: How To Overcome It

Who Gets Depressed?

Wednesday, March 21, 2012 - 15:39

Contributing Author: Guy Slowik FRCS

Depression afflicts approximately 19 million Americans, from children to the elderly, in all walks of life. It reportedly afflicts twice as many women as men (although some observers speculate that this could be because fewer men admit they need treatment).

Among those prone to depression are people:

  • With close relatives who have had depression, especially recurrent depressive episodes or who haveĀ bipolar disorder
  • Who have had depression before
  • With low self-esteem or self-loathing
  • With chronic medical disorders, including thyroid disease, diabetes, and high blood pressure
  • Who take certain medications, including oral contraceptives, steroids, and some medications for high blood pressure
  • With a loved one who is seriously ill
  • Who are alcoholic or drug-abusing
  • Who are withdrawing from alcohol or drug addiction
  • Who are going through stressful or traumatic life events

When depression first occurs in those over age 60, it:

  • May be a predictor of Alzheimer's disease
  • May be caused by an undiagnosed general medical disorder before the symptoms of the disorder become evident
  • May be a side effect of many drugs that are commonly prescribed for the elderly

Depression: How To Overcome It