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Risk Factors and Symptoms of Depression

According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, 8% of the US population suffers from depression at any given time. The National Alliance on Mental Illness highlights that 16 million Americans live with major depression, while 11% of youth deal with mood issues which often include depression as a diagnosis. Highlighting risk factors and symptoms is key to an early diagnosis and finding a treatment option that works best for the person in question.

Risk Factors

  • Family history of depression
  • Stressful situations recurring
  • Relationship trouble
  • Death or loss of a loved one
  • Major life changes
  • Stressful job or work environment
  • Family environment that includes violence, abuse, divorce, death, or illness
  • Family history of addiction
  • Experiencing abuse
  • Having a medical condition or other mental health issue


  • Prolonged, persistent sadness
  • Anxiousness
  • Loss of pleasure or interest
  • Neglecting responsibilities or personal care
  • Irritability
  • Lack of energy, fatigue
  • Decreased memory and concentration
  • Mood swings
  • Feelings of helplessness, hopelessness, worthlessness, or guilt
  • Continued negative thoughts
  • Increased drug/alcohol use
  • Suicidal thoughts

If you or a loved one is feeling some of the above symptoms and embodies any of the risk factors listed above, consulting with a mental health professional is a great place to start. Finding the right treatment option for you will likely include a plan that supports physical, emotional, and spiritual health.