Many factors seem to increase the risk of developing or triggering depression, whether it's atypical or not. Risk factors may include:
- History of bipolar disorder
- Abuse of alcohol or recreational drugs
- Physical or sexual abuse
- Traumatic childhood experiences
- Certain personality traits, such as low self-esteem or being overly dependent
- Serious illness, such as cancer or heart disease
- Certain medications, such as some high blood pressure medications or sleeping pills (talk to your doctor before stopping any medication)
- Environmental stressors
Your risk of depression may also increase if you have:
Sept. 17, 2015
- Blood relatives with a history of depression, bipolar disorder or alcoholism
- Stressful life events, such as the death of a loved one
- Depression after giving birth (postpartum depression)
- Family members who committed suicide
- Few friends or other personal relationships
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- Depression. National Institute of Mental Health. http://www.nimh.nih.gov/health/topics/depression/index.shtml. Accessed July 31, 2015.
- Depression. National Alliance on Mental Illness. https://www.nami.org/Learn-More/Mental-Health-Conditions/Depression/Overview. Accessed July 31, 2015.
- Lojko D, et al. Atypical features in depression: Association with obesity and bipolar disorder. Journal of Affective Disorders. 2015;185:76.
- Stress and relaxation techniques: What the science says. National Center for Complementary and Integrative Health. https://nccih.nih.gov/health/providers/digest/relaxation-science. Accessed Aug. 10, 2015.
- Cristancho MA, et al. Atypical depression in the 21st Century: Diagnostic and treatment issues. Psychiatric Times. 2011;28:42.
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- Silverstein B, et al. Evidence for broadening criteria for atypical depression which may define a reactive depressive disorder. Psychiatry Journal. In press. 2015;2015:575931. Accessed Aug. 27, 2015.
- Rohren CH (expert opinion). Mayo Clinic, Rochester, Minn. Aug. 19, 2015.
- Hall-Flavin DK (expert opinion). Mayo Clinic, Rochester, Minn. Aug. 27, 2015.