No one is immune to depression. It’s the most common mental health condition in the world. But some people do have increased risk factors.
When it comes to women, there are a few specific things that can increase your risk of developing depression. And it’s important to understand these factors because women are twice as likely to experience depression as men.
But knowing when you’re at risk and how to lower those risks, you can keep this condition at bay instead of letting it take over your whole life.
With that in mind, let’s look at a few of the factors that can increase the risk of depression in women.
Complications from premenstrual symptoms have often been viewed with a variety of stereotypes and even jokes. But PMS symptoms are very real. For some women, they can almost be debilitating.
If you have PMS symptoms that affect your job, your social life, your relationship, etc., it can lead to something called premenstrual dysphoric disorder—a type of depression. These severe symptoms, combined with hormonal changes in the body that may affect the brain, make some women more susceptible to depression from PMS.
You’ve probably heard of postpartum depression, but pregnancy itself can increase your risk of developing depression too. Your body changes, you feel tired, or you may be dealing with infertility issues, etc. There are a lot of stresses that go along with being pregnant or trying to get pregnant.
Postpartum depression is also completely normal and nothing to be ashamed of. While it will go away with time, getting treatment for depression while you’re pregnant or just after you’ve had your child can make the situation seem less overwhelming.
At around 50 years old (though it can be earlier or later), most women will start to experience symptoms of menopause.
Common signs include:
- Trouble sleeping
- Weight gain
Women who experience these symptoms can be at a greater risk of developing depression. Not only are the symptoms difficult to deal with, but hormone levels in the body are changing once again, which can affect the brain.
5. Gender Inequality
Gender equality is a hot topic in the news today. And for a good reason. Many women still aren’t treated as equals to their male counterparts, especially in the workforce. Pay scales are still tipped, women don’t receive the same positions of power as men, etc.
For a woman who works just as hard as a male co-worker and doesn’t get the recognition or payment she deserves, that can be incredibly overwhelming and frustrating. If you feel like you’re doing everything you can do get ahead and it isn’t happening because of gender inequality, it can start to put you into a state of depression.
6. Double Responsibilities
Though many men do take on both work and home responsibilities, it typically still falls on the shoulders of women. Balancing your work life with making meals, running errands, taking care of your kids, and keeping up with a busy schedule can start to take a toll.
If you feel overwhelmed by life in general, it can easily lead to depression. This is especially true if you feel that you don’t have any support.
If any of these risk factors are a part of your life, take a good look at how they’re affecting you. Depression can quickly take over. And without the right treatment, it can be hard to manage.
Thankfully, it’s not hopeless and you can find freedom if you’re struggling. Feel free to contact us if you’re worried about these factors or if you’re already dealing with depression. Together, we can start your journey toward finding peace once again.