Is Depression Genetic?

Depression is a condition that can have a huge impact on how we live—find out what genetic factors might be at play.

When it comes to mental illness, there are several potential contributing factors that can impact us. Depression is one mental health problem that can negatively influence each of us in many different ways. Not just as individuals–we also know that depression can also be found in families. Is depression genetic, or does it all come down to the environment? In this post, we will look into depression as a possible genetic condition and what you need to know.

Depression and Genetics: What We Know

More adults will experience depression in their lives than most people realize because not everyone talks about it. Depression can hit entire groups of people, including families. Since families can experience depression among individuals and across generations, many people wonder if there is a possible genetic link. The truth is a little more complicated than you might have guessed.

Is Depression Genetic?

There is some evidence that depression may have a genetic component, but that isn’t a guarantee. While research has shown that depression can be present in families, with people being more likely to develop depression if a relative does, that doesn’t necessarily mean that it is genetic. However, certain genetic conditions may also come with a risk of depression.

Some experts have found evidence of possible genes that could be linked to depression and anxiety. If these genes are present, it doesn’t necessarily mean someone will develop depression. However, it could increase their chance of developing it in combination with other factors.

If My Family Has Depression, Will I Get It?

Growing up in a family where depression is common can lead to concerns about whether or not you will ultimately develop depression yourself. At this time, there is no guarantee that having depression in your family will influence whether or not you get it. Depression in families is complicated, and there are many factors that can influence how it might show up in families–and for what reasons.

If you grew up in a family where depression was common, it might be a good idea to connect with a therapist. These concerns are completely understandable, and working through them with a therapist can help you to better understand the factors at work that might have influenced depression rates in your family.

The Takeaway

Depression is a challenge that can negatively influence your mental health, but it doesn’t necessarily run in families. If your relatives have experienced high depression rates, it might be worth considering exploring therapy yourself. There are many factors that can lead to depression in families, and they are not necessarily linked to genetics. To receive support for your mental health and recover from substance abuse, explore our Denver rehab services today.