Navigation Links
Sweating the small stuff: Early adversity, prior depression linked to high sensitivity to stress
Date:6/28/2011

We all know people who are able to roll with life's punches, while for others, every misfortune is a jab straight to the gut. Research examining this issue has found that although most people require significant adversity to become depressed the death of a loved one, say, or getting fired roughly 30 percent of people with first-time depression and 60 percent of people with a history of depression develop the disorder following relatively minor misfortunes. But no one knew why.

Now, a new study led by UCLA researchers suggests that people become depressed more easily following minor life stress in part because they have experienced early life adversity or prior depressive episodes, both of which may make people more sensitive to later life stress.

George Slavich, an assistant professor at the UCLA Cousins Center for Psychoneuroimmunology, and colleagues assessed individuals' experiences with early adversity, clinical depression and recent life stress. Slavich found that individuals who experienced an early parental loss or separation and people who had more lifetime episodes of depression became depressed following lower levels of life stress than those who didn't have these predisposing factors.

The study appears in the current online edition of the Journal of Psychiatric Research.

"We have known for a long time that some people are more likely to experience mental and physical health problems than others," Slavich said. "For example, while some people get depressed following a relationship breakup, others do not. In this study, we aimed to identify factors that are associated with this phenomenon and to examine whether increased sensitivity to stress might be playing a role."

The researchers recruited 100 individuals with depression, 26 men and 74 women, and interviewed them extensively to determine what types of adversity they were exposed to when they were young, how many episodes of depression they had experienced and what types of life stress they had encountered recently.

The results showed that people who had lost a parent or had been separated from a parent for at least one year before the age of 18 and individuals who had experienced more episodes of depression over their lifetime became depressed following significantly lower levels of recent life stress.

Additional analysis revealed that these effects were unique to stressors involving interpersonal loss.

"Researchers at UCLA and elsewhere have previously demonstrated that early adversity and depression history are associated with heightened sensitivity to stress," Slavich said. "The present study replicates this effect but suggests for the first time that these associations may be unique to stressors involving interpersonal loss. In other words, individuals who are exposed to early parental loss or separation and persons with greater lifetime histories of depression may be selectively sensitized to stressors involving interpersonal loss."

An important question raised by these findings is how adversity early in life and prior experiences with depression promote increased sensitivity to stress. One possibility, the researchers say, is that people who experience early adversity or depression develop negative beliefs about themselves or the world beliefs that get activated in the face of subsequent life stress. Another possibility, which is not mutually exclusive, is that early adversity and depression influence biological systems that are involved in depression, perhaps by lowering the threshold at which depression-relevant processes like inflammation get triggered.

"Although many factors impact stress sensitivity," Slavich said, "thoughts almost always play a role. For example, when your best friend doesn't call back, do you think she is angry at you or do you think it just slipped her mind? Our thoughts affect how we react emotionally and biologically to situations, and these reactions in turn greatly influence our health. Regardless of your prior experiences, then, it is always important to take a step back and make sure you are interpreting situations in an unbiased way, based on the information available."


'/>"/>

Contact: Mark Wheeler
mwheeler@mednet.ucla.edu
310-794-2265
University of California - Los Angeles
Source:Eurekalert

Related medicine news :

1. Genes Play Role in Prognosis With Non-Small Cell Lung Cancers
2. Certain genetic profiles associated with recurrence-free survival for non-small cell lung cancer
3. Small Increase in Diabetes Risk Noted in Statin Patients
4. Small to Mid-Sized Hospitals Turn to Orion Health to Implement Health IT Solutions for Improved Patient Care and Outcomes
5. Media, small businesses invited to ACS Webinar on ways to take advantage of Chinas dynamic growth
6. Small Time Company Rolls into the Big League: Trigger Point Performance Therapy Selected to Attend Athletes' Performance NFL Combine Preparation Program
7. Visual Cues that Improve Walking for People with Movement Disorders - Study Shows Small Change in Arrangement Can Make a Big Difference in Improvement Gained
8. Small Dogs Traced Back to Middle Eastern Wolf
9. Landrieu Comments on Presidents Small Business Health Care Report
10. Small molecule with high impact
11. A Small Grass-roots Non-profit, Announces That They Haven't Gone Away and are Still Alive with Helping the Disadvantaged Children in Ukraine
Post Your Comments:
*Name:
*Comment:
*Email:
(Date:5/26/2016)... ... May 26, 2016 , ... Cardiac arrhythmia is a ... on long-term patient survival, reports a team of UPMC researchers in the largest ... the Journal of Thoracic and Cardiovascular Surgery, provide critical information that will hopefully ...
(Date:5/26/2016)... Hampshire (PRWEB) , ... May 26, 2016 , ... MadgeTech ... are designed, engineered, and manufactured in Warner, New Hampshire at the MadgeTech headquarters. With ... provide reliable monitoring solutions trusted by government agencies, including NASA. , In 2012, ...
(Date:5/26/2016)... (PRWEB) , ... May 26, 2016 , ... ... Retinal Degeneration” for the Foundation Fighting Blindness, Long Island Chapter on June 4, ... the public. , Dr. Maisel, founder of Retina Group of New York ...
(Date:5/26/2016)... ... May 26, 2016 , ... In an effort to provide hair restoration information to the ... users and those who do not use the app. Dr. Mohebi, the founder of Parsa ... Dr. Mohebi Live . , Dr. Mohebi says, “The positive response to the Snapchat ...
(Date:5/26/2016)... Indiana (PRWEB) , ... May 26, 2016 , ... ... provider of healthcare supply chain solutions, today announced the organization has earned its ... meets international standards and is compliant with all rules and policies associated with ...
Breaking Medicine News(10 mins):
(Date:5/25/2016)... CORAL SPRINGS, Florida , May 25, 2016 /PRNewswire/ ... Marijuana Business Conference & Expo earlier this month, the ... undeniable. As revenues continue to climb into the billions, ... to the newly released 4th Edition State of Legal ... New Frontier, a cannabis-focused data-analysis firm, much of the ...
(Date:5/25/2016)... Texas , May 25, 2016 ... the issuance to it by the US Patent ... The company,s technology includes proprietary processes for electronic ... for health and wellness programs, HIPAA compliance and ... "Our technology ...
(Date:5/25/2016)... England , May 25, 2016 ... company employing the precision of circulating tumour DNA ... today announces the appointment of Professor Clive ... provide medical leadership across the clinical development programme, ... Inivata,s products help deliver significant improvements in clinical ...
Breaking Medicine Technology: