Causes of Depression
Although the exact causes of depression can differ for each person, it is now known that depression is most likely caused by a combination of genetic, biochemical, environmental and/or psychological factors. However, research indicates that for most people depressive illnesses are disorders of the brain and scientists have determined that many people that experience depression have imbalances in serotonin and/or norepinephrine, two neurotransmitters vital to optimal health.
Neurotransmitter Imbalance – The Underlying Cause
Whatever the factors that trigger it, depression begins with a disturbance in the part of the brain that governs mood. Brain chemicals called neurotransmitters become imbalanced and any number of disorders can result, including depression. Without restoring proper neurotransmitter function, depression and other imbalances related to neurotransmitter imbalance will continue.
Depression can be triggered by many things, including:
- A traumatic life event
- Thyroid disorders
- Gastrointestinal disorders
- Migraine headaches
- Interrupted sleep patterns
- Nutritional deficiencies
- Poor diet
- Sugar consumption
- Chronic pain
- Viral illness (i.e., mononucleosis)
- Lack of exercise
- Alcohol or drug abuse
- Food allergies and/or hypersensitivities
- Low blood sugar (hypoglycemia)
- Hormone based disorders (i.e., endometriosis, irregular menses, etc.)
- Any serious physical disorder
However, most of these triggers cause neurotransmitter depletion and/or imbalance, which can exacerbate underlying neurotransmitter dysfunction and lead to depression.
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