Psychological And Biological Explanations Of Depression

1534 Words7 Pages
Major depression is a commonly diagnosed psychological disorder affecting individuals’ ability to feel happiness and peace of mind. Those who suffer experience negative emotions, lack of motivation, changes in behaviour and dysfunctional cognitive symptoms. Depression is classified by the Diagnostic and statistical manual of mental disorders Fifth Edition (DSM-5) as five of more of the listed symptoms present persistently over the same two weeks. One of these symptoms must be depressed mood or loss of interest in previously pleasurable activities. Depression causes disruption to typical daily life such as inability to maintain friendships and jobs. Other symptoms outlined by the DSM-5 include; insomnia, fatigue and recurrent thoughts of death. There is much debate over what exactly causes depression. Biological explanations question hereditary and neurotransmitter factors. While psychological theories include the cognitive ideas of Beck’s negative triad and hopelessness theory. This essay will focus on the ways in which psychological and biological explanations contrast and how their theories can overlap to better understand depression. The biological theory of depression focusing on genetics argues that shared DNA is the cause of depression so the more genes shared with a depressed family member, the more an individual’s likelihood to develop depression. Whereas psychological theories of depression, such as the cognitive negative schema, focus on how individuals perceive
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