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Elisa Goldstein, Ph.D.Elisha Goldstein, Ph.D.
A blog about mindfulness, stress-reduction, psychotherapy and mental health.

Are You at Risk for Depression? Here's One Way to Find Out

Elisha Goldstein, Ph.D. Updated: Jul 28th 2009

questioningIn a time when life seems to be sending out curveballs, it can sometime be hard to know if it is just an adjustment to the times or if depression is actually visiting. Researchers are finding that one way to uncover whether you are a greater risk for mental health or drug dependence issues is just by looking into your family history.

In a study with 981 participants who were born in 1972 and 1973, Terrie E. Moffitt, Ph.D., a professor of psychology and neuroscience at Duke University's Institute for Genome Sciences & Policy, and colleagues, found that the more relatives a person has who suffers from depression, anxiety, bipolar or other mental health conditions, the more likely they are to be at risk.

Why is this important?

About 15 million Americans suffer from Depression and about 6 million suffer from Bipolar Disorder. Women are twice as likely to either get depressed or be diagnosed with depression (this is still in controversy). Approximately 80% of people who are depressed are not receiving treatment.

 If we could have an idea early on that we were at low or high risk of depression, we may be able to have a better idea on what is going on. Maybe we think our relationship is in a shambles and we hate our job, but what we don't actually realize is that we're depressed.

It's difficult to get the appropriate support when we don't recognize what's going on. Many professionals advocate for a depressive inventory to be part of every medical doctor's regimen.

When you know what is happening, you can get the right support. If you or someone you love struggles with depression, it is often good to get an evaluation and support from a skilled Psychotherapist or Psychiatrist. If you have suffered with bouts of depression, but are not currently in an episode, Mindfulness-Based Cognitive Therapy has been shown effective for preventing relapse.

For more information on depression, please click here.


Elisha Goldstein, Ph.D.

Elisha Goldstein, Ph.D. is a clinical psychologist in private practice in West Los Angeles and is author of the upcoming book The Now Effect, co-author of A Mindfulness-Based Stress Reduction Workbook, Foreword by Jon Kabat-Zinn, author of the Mindful Solutions audio series, and the Mindfulness at Work™ program currently being adopted in multiple multinational corporations.

Check out Dr. Goldstein's acclaimed CD's on Mindful Solutions for Stress, Anxiety, and Depression, Mindful Solutions for Addiction and RelapsePrevention, and Mindful Solutions for Success and Stress Reduction at Work. -- "They are so relevant, I have marked them as one of my favorites on a handout I give to all new clients" ~ Psychiatrist.

If you're wanting to integrate more mindfulness into your daily life, sign up for his Mindful Living Twitter Feed. Dr. Goldstein is also available for private psychotherapy.

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