When I first began to suffer from depression and anxiety, my first response was “why me?” I couldn’t understand why I, of all people, was dealt such a bad hand. As my mental health reached its lowest point, I began to look for answers. Once I realized that that are so many reasons why someone could suffer from these conditions, I felt less alone.
Understanding the triggers that caused you to feel the way that you do can help you to find the root of your problems. In doing so, you can make the first step on your path to recovery. Here are 10 major causes of depression and anxiety disorders.
The one thing that you can never hide from is your genetics. Some people are biologically predisposed to mental health issues. Research has shown that having a family member with depression or anxiety can make you more likely to have it also.
2. Traumatic Events
Trauma pushes our brains to their absolute maximum point of stress. This can cause us to use all our coping resources, leaving none left for everything else in our everyday lives. Traumatic events can also cause PTSD, which leads to a wealth of horrible symptoms.
When too much is going on around you, you can become physically and mentally exhausted due to a rise of cortisol in the brain. This exhaustion can lead to severe symptoms of depression and anxiety.
4. Dramatic Changes
When something major changes in your life, it can be hard to deal with. This is especially true when these changes are negative, such as financial crisis, health issues of you or your loved ones, or losing something important to you. These things can cause symptoms of depression and anxiety to flare as well as increasing the risk of suicidal thoughts.
5. Substance Abuse
Many different drugs, both illegal and prescribed, can cause symptoms of depression and anxiety. They can often affect the brain’s neurochemistry in a negative way. It’s important to check with your doctor before taking any medications. If you abuse illegal substances, reach out for help in quitting.
6. Loss of a Loved One
Whether it’s due to a death, divorce, or loss of a friend, most people have a hard time coping with the aftermath of a loss. For many people, however, it can be the trigger for depression or anxiety.
7. Chemical Imbalances
Your symptoms could arise due to an imbalance in the neurotransmitters of your brain. Depression or anxiety due to a chemical balance can often be difficult for the sufferer, as there is no clear indication of why they feel the way that they do. A clinical psychologist can diagnose this and help you to understand these issues.
8. Poor Diet
It’s something that we often forget about, but having a good, balanced diet is so important for our mental and physical health. Without proper nutrition, our body lacks the proper vitamins and minerals, which can cause mental health issues. In certain studies, too much sugar has been linked to depression and caffeine has been linked to anxiety.
Humans are social creatures. We need people around us so that we can thrive and be happy. When we are isolated from everyone else, we can begin to feel depressed or anxious. This is especially damaging if you have found yourself being rejected by people around you.
10. Other Illnesses
Cancer, Alzheimer’s, heart conditions, or any other major illness can put the sufferer at a huge risk for depression or anxiety. They can feel tired, hopeless, and unable to go on with life given how their illness affects them.
These 10 things can be the catalyst in many cases of depression and anxiety. Of course, every person is different and will have their own reasons. More often than not, there is a mix of contributing factors which can lead to mental illness. Understanding the root cause, however, can greatly help in ridding yourself of your negative symptoms.
If you suffer from symptoms of depression and anxiety, reach out to someone for help. You do not need to suffer alone. With guidance and support, you can recover and lead a normal life.