What Depression Is, and the Signs You Shouldn’t overlook

One of the most common mental-health issues that people face during their lifetime is depression. Yet it’s also one of the least talked about. Perhaps that is because there tends to be a bit of a stigma around depression, and some people just don’t want others to know.

This being said, a lot of people do experience it – at least to some degree. Remember that you don’t necessarily have to be in the hospital battling depression to be experiencing it. Sometimes the person who’s depressed might be your next-door neighbor.

Let’s look at some of the depression stats you may want to keep in mind.

Age Range

The median age range for the onset of depression is 32.5 years old. If you stop and think about why, you might consider that this does make sense. For most people, they have an idea of what they want to make of themselves in life. Usually, they have the vision for their future by the time they’ve reached their adult years, are out of school, into their career, and likely married (possibly with kids).

If they reach this point in their life (their early 30s) and are not at all where they thought they’d be, depression can set in.

As you grow older, you also become wiser with life experience and this can provide some protection against depression. Don’t let yourself believe that you are safe from depression just because you are older. Many people who are older still do experience it. If you did suffer from it when you were younger, there is also a higher chance that you will suffer from it again when you are about this age.

Interestingly enough, the prevalence of adults with a major depressive episode is highest in those who are between the ages of 18 and 25. So, while overall depression is more significant in your
early thirties, younger individuals are more likely to experience serious depression.

This could be due to societal pressures on them or due to the lack of ability to understand when they need to reach out for help.

Male Versus Female

Ever wonder how men and women stack up when it comes to depression? It would appear as though males are somewhat safeguarded against depression. They have an overall prevalence rate of 5.3% while females have an overall prevalence rate of 8.7%.

So, women do get depression more than men. Both genders need to learn the signs and symptoms of depression because it really can strike anyone.

To give you an idea of just how common depression is, statistics have noted that up to 300 million people suffer from depression worldwide. This makes it one of the most common mental illnesses out there.

Of those 300 million, about 11 million have experienced an episode of depression that has resulted in major impairment in the last year, meaning they were unable to carry on with normal functioning.

For most people, when depression begins to interfere with their
ability to do routine daily tasks, that’s when they start to seek out advice. Sadly, though, if they sought help earlier on in the process, they might have prevented it from ever getting quite so serious in the first place.

While normal depression can happen at any time, there are also episodic instances of depression. For example, postpartum depression can be quite common in women who have just given birth, especially if they don’t have a good support system in place. Many of the women who are experiencing this may have never had depression before in their life. As such, they are experiencing depression for the first time during what may be one of the most life-changing times they’ve ever been through.

Another form of depression that can occur is seasonal affective disorder, and this can lead to depression. This disorder happens when people become depressed during the darker winter months. Sometimes this can be helped by simply getting more natural daylight (which is something that some people don’t get enough of during the winter months). This improves mood and also increases vitamin D production in the body.

Approximately 5% of all people in the U.S. experience seasonal depressive disorder.

So, there you have some interesting findings on depression that may help you better understand the condition. Depression should not be taken lightly and it can strike at any time, so make sure you are doing your due diligence and watch for symptoms that may indicate that it could be developing.

Have you ever had a depressive event in your life? What steps did you take to get help and treatment for it?

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