Why is Depression More Common in Women?

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Why is Depression More Common in Women?

According to a recent study, depression is twice as prevalent in young women (ages 14-25 yr.) than men. However, the ratio decreases with age.

Furthermore, women are three times more apt to suffer from stress and anxiety. Though, the gender difference is not clear here. However, most believe that the statistics vary because females are more sensitive. Thus, females are prone to such symptoms.

Nevertheless, women are not the only victim of depression. Depression has become increasingly common in the United States, affecting individuals of all age groups.

Depression In Women

Depression in women is not a “female weakness.” Instead, it is a serious medical illness that occurs due to a number of reasons. Below we try to explain why women are more likely to suffer from depression:

Sociocultural Reasons

Because of the sensitive nature of females, they tend to come under stress more easily than men. A major contributing factor towards stress is that women have to work just like men. Also, they are expected to bear the burden, both at work and at home.

Keeping up with your work deadlines and coming back home to look after your family and seniors can put you under serious stress. Thus, leading to depression.

In addition,

Women Live Longer Than Men:  This is true and old age is often linked with loneliness, poor physical health, and bereavement coupled with mild to chronic depression.

Diagnosis for Depression: Nowadays, women are seeking diagnosis and treatment for depression more often. When it comes to consulting a psychiatrist, majority of the times, it is women who visit the specialist to discuss their feelings. Moreover, physicians (male or female) are more likely to diagnose depression in women.

Psychological Reasons

Furthermore, women tend to think about things more. They are more expressive or involved in deep thoughts. Although, this is a good habit of being able to express yourself deeply. However, it can lead  to depression as well.

On the other hand, men hardly express themselves. Rather, they have the endurance of pain or hardship without complaining or displaying their of feelings. Men prefer to suppress their feelings using anger or, at times, substance misuse.

Another common psychological reason that contributes to depression in women is their relationships with men. Nowadays, relationship problems are very common. Discovering that your partner, whom you trust and love the most, is cheating can lead to depression.

Biological Reasons

Another reason for depression more common among women is not the gender gap but their stronger genetic predisposition to developing depression. Hormone levels in women tend to fluctuate more than men, especially when they are giving birth or during menopause. In both cases, women are at a high risk of developing symptoms of depression.

  • Estrogen & Depression: A study tells that estrogen in women has a protective effect on the pathology that suppresses depression. A decrease in estrogen levels in women can increase the risk of depression.

The SAD Syndrome

SAD or Seasonal Affective Disorder Syndrome is four times more common in women than men. Moreover, women who live farther away from the Equator tend to develop it more.

According to the American Institute of Stress, “Tromso, a city in Norway 200 miles north of the Arctic Circle, has close to 50 days during the winter when the sun is never seen. This period is referred to as morketi den (murky time). As one psychiatrist noted, “The whole city slows down, people’s concentration and work capacity are reduced. They are always tired. There is a definite increase in depression, particularly in women.”

Medicines Leading To Depression

Certain medications and drugs like isotretinoin, which is used for the treatment of acne, interferon-alpha, an antiviral drug, and corticosteroids can increase the risk of depression both in men and women.

What To Do?

If you are a woman suffering from depression, you don’t have to hold it inside. This will only make the problem turn worse. Both depression and stress are serious mental illnesses which can often lead to suicidal thoughts. The best thing is to see an experienced psychiatrist.

A psychiatrist is a person who can help in the treatment of emotional and mental disorders. Whether your depression is mild or severe, you should consult a psychiatrist right now.

At Novum Psychiatry, we have the best psychiatrist in Sudbury. Our compassionate psychiatrists are here to help you cope with your depression issues. You can call us today to schedule an appointment with us. A fantastic experience awaits you.