Surprising Causes of Depression

Depression is a severe disorder that affects at least 5% of the adult population in the USA at any given point. It is also among the prime causes of disability for individuals between 15 and 44 years. There are many common causes of this ailment with the main ones including trauma, stress and a mental illness history in the family. However, what most people do not seem to know is that there are also some less known causes, and they need attention when dealing with depression or preventing its onset. Here are some of these surprising causes that are also important to know.

Extreme Use of Social Media

Most teenagers and young adults spend the bulk of their time on social media sites. In fact, different studies show that a significant percentage of youngsters use more time on the social media sites chatting with friends than do anything else through the day.does-facebook-cause-depression Various research findings now associate the many hours that people spend on social media sites with depression and this is more so for preteens and teens.

Internet addiction leads to an unrealistic view of the world, and most of these “addicts” are always comparing themselves to their online friends. They also struggle to get companionship and interaction with others in real life. The depression that comes with excessive use of social media is becoming very common. A report from the American Academy of Pediatric claims that “Facebook Depression” will become a medical term in the future.


A 2015 study in Britain concludes that smokers have an increased probability of suffering from anxiety and depression. The withdrawal feeling that smokers will get after going for long without a cigarette leads to anxiety. Also, the longer you smoke, the more damage you cause to your body and brain which in turn becomes more susceptible to depression.

Sleep Deprivation

Lack of enough quality sleep will not just lead to irritability and affect your performance at work or school, but research shows that it also increases the risk of depression. One 2007 study found that there was an increase in abnormal brain activity of the healthy participants when they were sleep deprived. And this was after seeing some upsetting images, which resembles the reaction that people with depression will have. The reason for this is that lack of enough sleep means that the brain cells will not replenish and so the brain will not function well which is one of the factors that lead to depression.

Your Neighborhood

As surprising as it might sound, the place that you live in can also cause depression. Research shows that urban dwellers have a 39% higher risk of mood disorders than individuals leaving in a rural setting. A 2011 publication in Nature explains this to be as a result of the fact that city inhabitants tend to have more activity on the part of their brain that is in charge of stress regulation. That increase in brain activity means that urban dwellers have to deal with more stress than those that leave in rural areas, and so the former are also more likely to get psychotic disorders.