Causes of depression in women – 4: Social causes
Juggling between different responsibilities from kids to career, women are most vulnerable to developing depression. In women, depression typically begins around adolescence. Studies have found that women have two times more risk of developing a major depressive episode over men. As compared to men, women are more likely to suffer different mental health conditions including anxiety, depression and psychological stress, aggravated by horrific experiences such as domestic and sexual violence, history of substance abuse, etc.
In addition to biological factors and genetic factors, several social and environmental factors may contribute to the development of depression in women. Social factors including family, workplace, lifestyle choices, relationships, coping skills, and social communication are believed to cause an adverse effect on the mental health of women. Here are some of the social factors that can cause depression in women:
Stress at home
With so many things on the plate at home, women are always vulnerable to stress and anxiety. The attempt to balance personal and professional lives sometimes take a toll on women’s mental health. Moreover, family responsibilities such as constant caregiving, managing household work and expenses, and living up to the expectations of family members and oneself tend to make women depressed in the long run.
Some important life events such as marriage and having a baby also add to women woes. Looking after the baby can be a taxing time for women as they have to develop a new interpersonal relationship with the child and at the same time look after the family, which can result in mood disorders.
Stress at work
Women are prone to many stressful situations at work, particularly if they experience discrimination at work or are not able to achieve important goals. Further, the negative thoughts of losing or changing a job or other job-related concerns can bother women more than the men.
Marital or relationship problems
Married women have a higher sense of responsibility as compared to men to manage relationships, which may make them more vulnerable to relationship problems. It has been found that women who are not happy or dissatisfied with their marriages choose not to share or discuss their feelings and thoughts. In an attempt to avoid confrontation with unpleasant experiences, they impose a silence on themselves, which over time may lead to a loss of self-esteem and negative thoughts, and chances of developing depressive symptoms.
Women with a history of traumatic life events such as physical or sexual abuse (during childhood or adulthood) report some sort of mental illness in later life. Those who are victims of severe forms of abuse including domestic violence and teen dating violence are likely to develop mental health problems such as post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD), panic attacks, anxiety, depression and substance abuse problems.
Managing depression in women
While social support empowers women, constant stressors, whether situational or personal, deteriorates mental health. Therefore, it is the responsibility of society and family members to take care of women, especially when they are in distress. Women themselves should devote time to self-care and indulge in activities that give them happiness and peace.
If you report signs of persistent sadness, a sudden loss of interest and pleasure in activities, irritability, and feelings of worthlessness, hopelessness, and guilt, you should immediately report to a clinician. Early diagnosis and subsequent treatment can help improve the treatment outcome in patients with depression. The Texas Depression Treatment Help can assist people with depression in getting the right help. Chat online with experts or call our 24/7 helpline number 866-827-0282 to get information about the best depression treatment clinic in Texas.
Read the other articles of the series “Causes of depression in women:”