by: Megan Hazel
It often seems that women get depressed more than men do. Still, the question remains: Is there really a connection between women and depression? There are several takes on the issue. The first thing to consider is that it might not be that more women get depressed – but that more women report depression. The second thing to consider is the hormonal aspect of post partum depression and other hormone cycles that women confront. These two factors lead to the impression that women get depressed more easily and more often.The first reason that it appears that more women get depressed than men is simple. It is that mental health has always been thought to be a women’s issue. It has never been considered manly for a man to admit that he is depressed. For this reason, there are many more women that report depression than men. But are there many more women that actually feel depression than men, or do the numbers balance themselves out?
Regardless of how many more women feel depression than men do, and regardless of whether or not there are indeed greater numbers of depressed women than men, the fact remains clear that there are several main links between women and depression. These are very solid and clear links that have been researched for many years. The most basic of these links is the hormonal factor.
There are two main hormones that make up both men and women. Men have a greater amount of testosterone, and women have a greater amount of estrogen. Both of these hormones can cause changes within people. However, estrogen has a more likely chance of having levels change. Levels of estrogen are always changing in women due to their monthly cycles. When levels change, there is a greater chance that a woman’s whole outtake will change. Changing levels of both types of hormones might lead women to depression more easily. Estrogen is a very strong hormone, and it is also a very fickle hormone. It takes just the right amount for women to feel balanced and happy. Too much or too little might cause changes in moods.
Having children is another link between women and depression. Most women will scoff at this, telling you that having children is one of the greatest things that a woman can do. However true that may be, it really causes changes within all aspects of the woman’s body. Hormone levels are fluctuating and are constantly changing, and might not stabilize for some time. This is something that is very important to remember. Also, months after a woman has a child, she may have effects of changing hormones and she might be susceptible to changes.
There are several other factors that could lead a woman to depression, and that might account for there being great numbers of women who are suffering today. First of all, the roles of women have been changing for many years. While some might see this as a good thing, the problem is that lots of women are torn between the traditional roles of women and the newer roles. Because of that, many women are trying to do it all – to have children and take care of their family, while at the same time to work outside the home and have an important career. This is something that can be great for a lot of women, but they find themselves completely overwhelmed and with no idea of what they should do next. Trying to do too much is often something that many individuals have problems with, and it can also be something that leads to major problems within the workings of women. Sometimes, it is the primary factor that leads them to depression.
Another potential factor is that a “mental illness” such as depression is not viewed positively in society.. Many women are afraid to admit that they are depressed, and this does not help them, it only leads to worse depression and worse dangers for themselves and their families. Women who feel depression should not be afraid to talk about it, nor to get help. In fact, with so many women feeling so much depression, there should be more to think about than ever before. Changing hormones, changing roles, and trying to do too much are all factors that lead women to depression. Stigmas about what depression is are often factors that keep a woman depressed once she is there. With more of a push for women to explore the mental health ideas, there will be more chances that they can come out of it in the end.
About the Author
Megan Hazel is a freelance writer who writes about mental health topics including Community Support Services | Depression Anxiety Treatment