A new study warns experiencing stress early on in life can make it more likely for you to develop depression later on.
The study conducted by a team from the University of Bristol reveals individuals who experience this are at risk of developing negative thinking, which can result in major depressive disorder (MDD). Researchers used a rodent model to show that offspring are very sensitive to negative biases in their brain when treated with a stress hormone called corticosterone.
"This study supports a wider body of literature which suggests that depression may develop from an interesting yet complex interaction between biological and psychological processes. As we start to understand these better we hope that the knowledge we generate can be used to better guide current and future treatments," lead author of the study Emma Robinson, Professor of Psychopharmacology, School of Physiology, Pharmacology & Neuroscience, told a news portal. Adding, "Our larger body of work suggests that the effectiveness of current antidepressant treatments might be linked to how much a person is able to re-engage with their environment and their level of social support."
However, the new findings shed light on so much more than just the association between stress and depression. "The findings also add further evidence to support the validity of this relatively new area of research into mood disorders, particularly studies using animals to understand the neurobiology of affective biases and how they contribute to normal and pathological behaviour," Robinson told a news portal.
Researchers hope the new findings can help scientists develop better treatment options and early interventions to reduce the rates of the number of people developing depression.
The study's findings were originally published in Neuropsychopharmacology.