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Looking at explanations for depression both biological and psychological gives strong evidence that depression is due to either one of the factors or in many places a little of each.

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Introduction

DEPRESSION Looking at explanations for depression both biological and psychological gives strong evidence that depression is due to either one of the factors or in many places a little of each. Looking closer at biological depression the main explanation is the genetic factor. First degree relatives who have mood disorders are more likely to develop one than with people who have relatives without this disorder. Allen (1976) showed a higher average concordance rate for bipolar disorder in MZs (72%) than DZs (14%). For major depression concordance rates are different suggesting that if genetic factors are involved they are different for the two disorders. Data is, however, limited as families and twins share the same environment. ...read more.

Middle

Many drugs used to treat medical conditions e.g. TB produce elation that increased levels of noradrenaline and serotonin levels. Teuting et al (1981) found by using urine samples of depressed people, there were lower levels of compounds produced when noradrenaline and serotonin are broken down by enzymes, this suggesting lower than normal activity or noradrenaline and serotonin secreting neurons in the brain. Kety theory states that serotonin plays a role in limiting noradrenaline levels, when this is deficient noradrenaline levels fluctuate leading to both mania and depression. However, antidepressant drugs take time to take effect, therefore suggestion that depression cannot be explained simply by neurotransmitter levels. Also as not everyone responds to the drugs to alleviate depression. Looking at the psychological explanations of depression two main parts of the behavioural and cognitive ideas. ...read more.

Conclusion

An experiment conducted in which dogs were restrained so that they could not avoid electric shocks, appeared to become passively resigned the shocks. Later the dogs were introduced to a new situations were they were allowed to escape, the dogs made no attempt. The behaviour shown is similar to depressed humans. Depressed people, like the dogs, learn from experience to develop expectancy that their behaviour will be fruitless in bringing about change. When people feel helpless to influence their encounters with pleasurable and unpleasurable stimuli they become depressed. However this theory fails to address the issue why some people blame themselves whilst others blame the outside world. Explaining depression as either biological or psychological alone is limited as many explanations do not explain everything. To understand the causes, psychologist have to combine explanations to gain a wide range of answers. Sharmila Kutty 12.7 ...read more.

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