The social causes of depression can be summarized as feeling like a victim of society and not taking responsibility for the hardships you experience, which leads to experiencing symptoms of depression. For more information about the the social causes of depression, continue reading this article until the end for more important details about the factors contributing to depression.
|Social causes of depression|
Social causes of depression
The social causes of depression primarily originate from the family and gradually expand to encompass the school, street, and community. They affect individuals with depression physically, psychologically, and behaviorally, starting from their early years and shaping their life trajectory thereafter.
The social factors contributing to depression manifest in various forms within geographically disadvantaged areas characterized by poverty, illiteracy, underdevelopment, fragility, and family disintegration, among others. These factors tend to decrease in intensity as we move towards geographies with higher economic incomes and prestigious educational degrees. Generally, depression does not discriminate or selectively target individuals, but rather the socio-economic and socio-cultural status remains the determining factor in whether or not a person is affected by depression. Additionally, according to recent statistical findings, depression predominantly affects females to a significant extent compared to males, especially in third-world countries, due to the disadvantaged position of women.
The social causes of depression are difficult to control or regulate. However, despite this challenge, adults who have developed adaptive personalities can cope with unfavorable circumstances and social situations. Conversely, young children are the most vulnerable to problems and psychological and behavioral disorders resulting from the societal conditions and pressures they are exposed to in their early years. In both cases, whether with young children or adults, the physical and psychological symptoms of depression vary from person to person, depending on a range of factors related to genetic predisposition, psychological stressors, and accompanying behavioral factors.
what is social causes of depression?
● Causes of depression related to family : The family is considered the nucleus of society, and the marital relationship serves as the foundation of the family. Any problems between spouses directly affect the children, who are integral members of both the present and future society. Generally, the key family problems that can lead to psychological disorders, especially depression, for spouses and children are as follows:
• Family disintegration: There are several marital issues that can result in divorce and family disintegration between partners. The negative consequences of such outcomes have been scientifically shown to impact the psychological well-being of children and increase their susceptibility to various psychological problems and behavioral deviations. In a reliable study isolating young mice from their parents, scientists observed that these young ones experienced a range of behavioral disorders and psychological problems, including isolation, introversion, severe sadness, and chronic depression, which were attributed to the absence of parental care, love, and affection. This can be scientifically explained by the lack of activation of the oxytocin hormone, known as the "love and bonding hormone," with a decreased concentration of this hormone during the early years of children's lives. It affects the natural development of certain parts of the child's emotional brain and leads to feelings of worthlessness, making them prone to recurring episodes of depression.
• Domestic violence: Domestic violence is a common cause of family breakdown, and it primarily targets spouses, particularly in underdeveloped countries and rural areas. It can also affect young children, perpetrated by both mothers and fathers. In both cases, domestic violence leads to a series of physical, psychological, and behavioral health problems. At the top of the list is depression. Moreover, violence contributes to the creation of individuals saturated with a culture of violence, which is passed down to future generations. This perpetuates a cycle that reinforces the reproduction of the phenomenon of violence from one generation to another. Generally, there are three types of violence: physical violence, which involves direct physical harm such as hitting and slapping; verbal violence, which involves offensive and derogatory language that attacks dignity and involves racism; and symbolic violence, which is expressed through gestures and derogatory meanings.
• Family caregiving: Both spouses, the husband and the wife, can experience depression as a result of the effort and costs associated with caring for their children. Providing children with their rights to love, affection, and care requires patience and physical and psychological strength. The likelihood of parents experiencing depression increases when there are health problems in children that usually require special care and significant financial costs. This is often accompanied by poverty and low income for the family, which may force the father to borrow money to meet the daily needs of the family. These financial pressures can lead to stress, psychological and nervous pressure, and an increased chance of experiencing depression.
● Causes of depression related to street : People can experience depression through public streets, especially since this environment has become a breeding ground for criminals and those with immoral values. They find complete freedom in the absence of oversight by responsible authorities and the strict laws that maintain the balance of the street. As one of the institutions of social upbringing for individuals in general, depression can be associated with public streets through the following:
• Sexual harassment: Sexual harassment incidents in public streets or workplaces can lead to depression in women or children. A series of physical and behavioral disorders and disturbances may accompany the victim throughout their lives. Sexual harassment that results in depression can be caused by specific words and offensive phrases that leave a psychological impact and deep wounds on the victim. It can also be physical harassment through touching sensitive areas or direct use of violence and force. In general, according to recent research and scientific studies, sexual harassment can cause many psychological problems. Along with depression, it can lead to social phobia, panic attacks, chronic anxiety, and more.
• Crime and theft: The network of criminal gangs and killers has become widespread within alleys and streets. They engage in physical and verbal violence and assault others' property, using weapons without any accountability or deterrence. This turns the street into a space dominated by chaos, barbarism, and a lack of security and tranquility without any intervention from responsible authorities. Consequently, it has a significant impact on the psyches of citizens, exposing them to depression and a range of psychological and behavioral disorders due to repeated attacks. Throughout their lives, these experiences haunt them. In addition, some victims of street assaults may contemplate suicide and self-disposal due to the wounds and scars they suffer from sharp weapons that alter their appearance and distort their image in front of society and their families.
● Causes of depression related to school : Schools are also educational institutions that play a significant role in the social upbringing of individuals. Any problem encountered by students in school, whether with their peers or with educational staff, can lead to various mental and behavioral disorders. One such problem is depression, which can greatly affect a student's academic future. Among these issues, we can mention the following:
• Bullying: The phenomenon of bullying has become widespread within educational environments and institutions among students. Its purpose is to inflict psychological harm by belittling the bully's victim, mocking their appearance, way of speaking, or way of thinking. This leaves a negative impression and impact on the victim's psyche, negatively affecting their ability to concentrate and pay attention to their studies. It also hinders their ability to integrate and adapt with other friends, leading to isolation and introversion, accompanied by resentment and hatred towards others. Consequently, this can lead to several psychological disorders that pave the way for depression. Furthermore, bullying has evolved and can now occur not only in schools and on the streets but also through social media. Social media platforms have become hotspots for bullies, and many celebrities and prominent figures have suffered from depression and various other psychological disorders as a result of bullying, from which no one is immune.
• Insult and discriminationm: Children in school can also be subjected to insults from educational staff, through mocking their intelligence level, spontaneous way of thinking, different appearance and clothing, or discrimination based on their differences from other students. This inflicts deep psychological wounds and harm that affects the child's mental health, exposing them to several psychological problems in the present and future, such as depression and other disorders. Conversely, the insults that children receive from their elementary school teachers, for example, cause them to store negative energy that affects their behavior. They may release this energy violently and directly within the family or with friends, or indirectly through resorting to drugs or early exposure to pornography. On the other hand, the violence and insults experienced by a child at the beginning of their educational journey from educational staff can be reflected and directed towards teachers in middle and high school years.
● Causes of depression related to lifestyle : Suffering from depression can be closely related to the lifestyle we choose. Humans are instinctively prone to being greatly influenced by their social environment, whether it is in close proximity or at a distance. People in your social circle can have control over whether you develop depression or not based on the lifestyle you adopt with them:
• Isolation and introversion: If you have an introverted personality and prefer to live in isolation from others, it is important to be aware that recent statistics provided by researchers in social psychology indicate that the majority of introverted individuals reported experiencing various psychological problems such as depression, panic attacks, and acute anxiety. The reason behind this, according to the perspective of social neuroscience, lies in the instinctive inclination of humans to join communities in order to strengthen social bonds and cohesion among its members. This is attributed to the natural release of the love and bonding hormone called oxytocin, which makes you feel the desire to join human gatherings. On the other hand, recent scientific studies and research confirm that introverted personalities experience a deficiency in this hormone, which explains their social isolation and subsequent susceptibility to depression.
• Excessive extroversion: If isolation and introversion can cause depression, excessive extroversion can also lead to the same outcome. Excessive socializing can bring about numerous problems and exhaust the human psyche, which expends an excessive amount of energy in interacting with various human personalities. Additionally, according to statistics provided by the American Psychiatric Association, extroverted personalities either experience an excess secretion of the love and bonding hormone oxytocin or, conversely, suffer from a severe deficiency in this hormone, seeking a balance in their mental state. This drives them to engage in any interaction with the social environment around them, even if they are dissatisfied with their social relationships. This lack of fulfillment causes extroverts to not experience true happiness and makes them prone to recurring episodes of depression and profound sadness.