Depression in Men
Depression and Other Medical ConditionsDepression can coexist with other illnesses. In such cases, it is important that the depression and each co-occurring illness be appropriately diagnosed and treated.
Depression research has shown that anxiety disorders commonly accompany this condition. Some examples of anxiety disorders include:
- Post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD)
- Obsessive-compulsive disorder (OCD)
- Panic disorder
- Social phobia
- Generalized anxiety disorder (GAD).
Depression is especially common among people with PTSD, a debilitating condition that can develop after exposure to a terrifying event or ordeal in which grave physical harm occurred or was threatened. Traumatic events that can trigger PTSD include violent personal assaults such as rape or mugging, natural disasters, accidents, terrorism, and military combat. PTSD symptoms can include:
- Re-experiencing the traumatic event in the form of flashback episodes, memories, or nightmares
- Emotional numbness
- Sleep disturbances
- Outbursts of anger
- Intense guilt
- Avoidance of any reminders or thoughts of the ordeal.
In one study, more than 40 percent of people with PTSD also had depression when evaluated at one month and four months following the traumatic event.
Substance use disorders (including substance abuse or dependence) also frequently co-occur with depression. Research has revealed that people with alcoholism are almost twice as likely as those without alcoholism to also suffer from major depression.
Depression has also been found to occur at a higher rate among people who have other serious illnesses, such as:
- Heart disease (see Depression and Heart Disease)
- Stroke (see Stroke and Depression)
- Parkinson's disease.
Symptoms of depression are sometimes mistaken for inevitable accompaniments to these other illnesses. However, research has shown that the co-occurring depression can and should be treated, and that in many cases, treating the depression can also improve the outcome of the other illness.