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Stress and Depression

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I need help with an explanation of the relationship between stress and depression, and what two factors of stress response that can influence the development of depression. Also, what is the influence of depression on the immune and inflammatory response systems?

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Solution Summary

What is the link between depression and stress? This post explores that link as well as an explanation of the way the stress response can influence the development of depression. Also includes the influence of depression on the immune and inflammatory response systems. Over 590 words, 3 references.

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Stress is "an organism's response to a stressor such as an environmental condition or a stimulus" (Wikipedia, 2013, para 1). The way in which a person responds to stress also has effect on the body at a chemical level. Hormones such as cortisol, dopamine and serotonin are released and can have an effect on the individual's mood, biochemistry within the brain, and immune system response.

Depression is "is a mental disorder characterized by episodes of all-encompassing low mood accompanied by low self-esteem and loss of interest or pleasure in normally enjoyable activities" (Wikipedia, 2013, para 1). At a biochemical level, the release of serotonin, the hormone that controls mood regulation and emotions such as fear, anxiety and depression, is decreased in those individuals who are diagnosed with clinical depression.

Stress and depression are deeply connected and repeated exposure to high levels of stress can cause "elevated hormones such as cortisol, the 'stress hormone,' and reduced ...

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