Depression is an illness, or a collection of illnesses, that currently belongs to the realm of what is relatively little known to science.
Little is known about the factors that can trigger the onset of depression. it is also unclear whether the reasons for its existence are more biological or more closely related to the experiences we have throughout life. However, some factors and habits have been statistically linked to their occurrence.
What factors can lead us to depression?
Below is a list of those habits that, while they don’t necessarily translate into the onset of depression, can make us a little more likely to fall into it.
1. Not getting enough sleep
We spend a large part of our life sleeping, and it is during sleep that our body (and more precisely our nervous system) is repaired in order to successfully meet the challenges of the next day.. It can be deduced that sleep is very important, but it is also that the problems during this phase can trigger many and very serious problems that can endanger our lives if they escalate too much.
One of them falls into depression. Some of the reasons for this are the functional and chemical imbalances that lack of sleep for long periods of time (or, directly, sleep disturbances) produces in our brain, but it can also be due to a loop effect: with sleep, everything is very tired, we find ourselves unable to perform relatively simple tasks and are less likely to enter states of euphoria and joy, as this would be an “unnecessary” expenditure of energy.
If we learn to see life through the glasses of fatigue, depression has the flattest ground to be a part of our lives.
2. Expect too much of ourselves
This habit is related to the above, and is also related to fatigue and stress. This is the flip side; instead of passively tiring, it’s about doing it actively, setting too many goals, or making them too difficult. This will not only negatively affect our level of health (which will make it difficult for us to sleep if we work late at night), but alsos going to give us a distorted image of ourselves.
If we get used to this dynamic, instead of asking ourselves if the goals we have set are demanding too much of ourselves, we will start to wonder what is wrong with us so that we cannot get to where we wanted to go. .
This, if left unchecked, can negatively affect our self-esteem, can lead to outbursts of anger, and will interfere with the way we relate to others. All of this, in turn, will leave us with fewer resources (social and health) to deal with tasks that are too difficult to begin with.
3. Lack of exercise
While performing overly expensive physical tasks can wear us out and prevent us from doing other things for the rest of the day, doing moderate exercise will provide us with many benefits. In fact, for most people it is absolutely necessary to spend at least a few hours per week playing one or more sports in order to stay in optimal health.
Sport will not only keep our muscles well preserved, but will also make us secrete more dopamine and serotonin. two substances linked to the state of euphoria, the feeling of well-being and happiness. They can be considered as antidepressants produced naturally by our body.
4. Keep your thoughts negative
There are people who, although they have not developed depression, they show a certain propensity to feed the negative thoughts that assail them. Some of the emergence of these ideas is unintentional and accidental, of course, but that doesn’t mean that always staying in a state of near sadness and bitterness isn’t seen as a problem and something that can be attenuated if one uses stubbornness. he.
If the default mood has to do with sensations and feelings that produce pain, you are getting closer to making those emotions worse and becoming chronic.
However, it should be borne in mind that it is one thing to be a person with pessimistic tendencies and without a diagnosis of depression, and another to suffer from the constant presence of intrusive and recurring thoughts of a negative nature, that they are linked or not. to a fictitious situation or with memories of something that really happened, which seriously affects the quality of life. The first situation does not have to seriously affect health, while the second can be very limiting if left untreated.
5. Stay in a working environment with mobbing
We must not forget that a large part of the phenomena that lead to depression can be due to the way in which others interact with oneself. In the case of moral harassment, harassment at work can aim to hurt us psychologically to the point of forcing us to quit work. Recognizing this problem is a key part of slowing the passage of episodes of depression.
Depression can also appear where there is a dynamic of harassment and abuse, even if it is not in the context of work, and even if we are not the direct victims.
6. Poor nutrition
We are what we eat, and this also has implications for what we think and how we feel. The health of our neurons and the type of neurotransmitters and hormones that interact in our neuroendocrine system are completely dependent on the type of diet we are on, so severe imbalances in this regard often produce a chain reaction with far reaching consequences. to some extent unexpected, but still far-reaching and with serious effects on our quality of life. One of them is the onset of depression favored by these problems.
If these changes in our body become sufficiently visible and affect our self-esteem, the looping reaction and possible onset of eating disorders will make it worse.
7. Drink too much alcohol
People with diagnosed depression are much more likely to fall into alcoholism if nothing is done to prevent it, however, people who don’t yet have depression can develop it if they get used to drinking too much.
Alcohol has a depressing effect on the body and also facilitates the onset of self-control issues which can affect a person’s quality of life in many ways, making them more and more isolated. This also happens with the consumption of many drugs that are illegally marketed.
Isolation is a way of life for millions of people around the world, And unfortunately is also linked to depression. Not only can it be linked to the lack of sensory stimuli and the partial absence of cognitive challenges, but it also leaves without the network of material and emotional support provided by other people and is often linked to unhealthy lifestyle habits.
In the case of depression in the elderly, isolation is usually a constant that must be interrupted by sufficiently capable and competent elderly care services.