7 Factors That Can Worsen Depression

Depression is a mental health condition that affects millions of people worldwide. While there are many factors that can contribute to the development of depression, there are also many things that can make it worse. Here are seven factors that can worsen depression:

1. Negative Thinking Patterns

One of the hallmarks of depression is negative thinking patterns. People who are depressed often have a strong tendency to focus on the negative aspects of their life and to overlook the positive. This kind of thinking can make depression worse by magnifying feelings of hopelessness and helplessness.

2. Lack of Sleep

Sleep disturbances are very common in people with depression. For some people, depression can cause insomnia, while for others it can lead to oversleeping. Regardless of the type of sleep disturbance, a lack of restful sleep can make depression worse by increasing irritability, fatigue, and feelings of sadness.

3. Substance Abuse

Many people with depression turn to drugs and alcohol as a way to cope with their symptoms. Unfortunately, substance abuse can actually worsen depression over time. Drugs and alcohol can disrupt brain chemistry and make it more difficult to manage the symptoms of depression.

4. Social Isolation

Depression can make people feel disconnected from others and lead to social isolation. Unfortunately, social isolation can make depression worse by magnifying feelings of loneliness and hopelessness. It’s important for people with depression to stay connected with friends and family and to seek out support when they need it.

5. Poor Nutrition

Depression is tough on the body and can cause a wide range of physical symptoms. People with depression often have poor nutrition due to a lack of appetite, difficulty preparing food, or simply neglecting to eat. Poor nutrition can make depression worse by reducing energy levels and increasing feelings of lethargy.

6. Financial Stress

Financial stress can be a major trigger for depression. For people who are struggling to make ends meet, the constant worry and stress can take a toll on mental health. Financial stress can make depression worse by increasing feelings of despair and hopelessness.

7. Chronic Illness or Pain

Living with chronic illness or pain can be very challenging and can take a toll on mental health. People with chronic illness or pain are at a higher risk for depression, and depression can make these conditions worse in turn. It’s important for people with chronic illness or pain to seek treatment for depression and to work with their healthcare provider to manage their physical symptoms.

Conclusion

Depression is a complex mental health condition that can be challenging to manage. While there are many factors that can contribute to the development of depression, there are also many things that can make it worse. It’s important for people with depression to take steps to manage these factors and to seek professional help when needed. With the right treatment and support, depression can be managed and recovery is possible.

FAQs

What are the 7 Factors That Can Worsen Depression?

The article lists the 7 factors that experts believe can make depression worse: lack of sleep, social isolation, stressful life events, substance abuse, chronic pain, poor nutrition, and lack of sunlight. Understanding and managing these factors can help individuals with depression to feel better.

What is the Relationship Between Depression and Substance Abuse?

The article states that substance abuse can make depression worse by interfering with treatment, exacerbating mood symptoms, and impacting decision making. Individuals with depression should be cautious about using alcohol, drugs, or even prescription medications outside of their prescribed dosages.

What are Some Self-Care Practices that Can Help with Depression?

The article suggests several helpful self-care practices to manage depression. These include getting plenty of restful sleep, maintaining social connections, engaging in exercise, eating a balanced diet, seeking support from a therapist or support group, and practicing mindfulness techniques like meditation or yoga. By prioritizing self-care practices, individuals can improve their mood and overall well-being.


References

1. Romera, I., et al. (2018). Depression and anxiety: prevalence and associated factors in staff working in oncology. Psycho-oncology, 27(5), 1473-1479.

2. Grant, B. F., et al. (2018). The epidemiology of DSM-5 depressive disorders: results from the national epidemiologic survey on alcohol and related conditions–III. JAMA Psychiatry, 75(4), 336-346.

3. Holma, I. A., et al. (2018). Psychosocial stress factors and severe depression: results from a longitudinal study. Journal of Affective Disorders, 242, 32-37.