Two days ago, we read research stating that women who go off their antidepressants during pregnancy risk terrible depression. Certainly pregnancy doesn't guard against depression. If they stay on them, they risk a baby who can't breath at birth.
Post-partum depression can be predicted by fatigue. This seems to be the chicken-egg question. Does fatigue cause depression? Or are depressed people fatigued? My answer, at least to moms, is that the fatigue is causitive. Over and over we have encouraged women to sleep and the depression and crazy feelings evaporate. It would be interesting to see if extra sleep, or more consistent sleep, would help all depressed people.
For those profoundly affected, whatever the cause: Should women who are so depressed even be getting pregnant? Read more here.
Speaking of depression and kids: kids born preterm (before 33 weeks especially) suffer more depression. I can think of lots of reasons this might be true and they don't involve genetics as the study's authors suggest. A child born severely premature must overcome severe medical conditions (breathing problems, musculoskeletal problems), often suffers delayed development socially, emotionally, physically and cognitively, often has some permanent disability (blindness, deafness, kidney, heart, lung problems) that impairs activity levels, spent lots of time in the hospital and have taken almost every kind of medication in doses that would kill adults. It makes for a difficult childhood and transition into adulthood.
And, parents are more depressed than non-parents. The study's author states: it appears the emotional costs outweigh the psychological benefits, she said. Yup, I think the solution is to stop having kids. They are so depressing! People need a hermetically sealed life--perfect climate control, calories delivered by IV in exact doses to keep you enviably thin (fat people with heart disease are depressed, too), plastic surgery to keep you young, forced sterilization to keep you happy. Oh never mind that society will become extinct over the next 100 years. At least we will be gorgeous and happy--richer too--we won't have to spend all the money feeding the little creeps either. What a relief!
And racism makes us depressed. Well, duh! It's not like I'm happy when I'm discriminated against, how 'bout you? Perhaps the forced sterilization would help here, too. When everyone is guaranteed to be wiped out within 100 years, maybe your skin color won't matter anymore. Oh heck, what am I saying? It will too. We will need to add scientific skin toning to the end of the world equation so we are all the same color, live in perpetual sunshine, take in minimal calories, and don't have children. Perfection.
And winter makes us depressed. SAD (Seasonal Affect Disorder) which I suffer from, sucks. Which is why I live in sunny Houston. Howdy ya'll! I love it here, sporting shorts in February.
Finally, all this depression costs the U.S. a ton of money.
Is it possible that all this depression is a creation to make money for drug companies, let people with crappy attitudes off the hook, and is just a symptom of our disconnected, socially fragmented and malnourished society? Nah.