Anyone can feel sad or depressed at times. Mood disorders are more intense and difficult to manage than normal feelings of sadness. Sometimes life's problems can trigger depression. When parents get divorced, a loved one dies, a break up with a girlfriend or boyfriend happens, or grades are not what the adolescent wants them to be, coping with the pressure may be difficult.
These life events and stress can bring on feelings of sadness, depression and mood disorders, or make the mood harder to manage. Adolescents who have a parent with a mood disorder have a greater than 50 percent chance of having a mood disorder.
The chance for depression in females in the general population is 5 percent to 9 percent and for males is 3 percent to 4 percent. Once a person in the family has this diagnosis, the chance for siblings or children to have the same diagnosis is 7 percent to 19 percent. In addition, relatives of persons with depression are also at increased risk for bipolar disorder (manic-depression). The chance for siblings or children of a person with depression to have bipolar illness is 0.3 percent to 2 percent.
The chance for manic-depression or bipolar disorder in males and females in the general population is 1 percent. Once a person in the family has this diagnosis, the chance for siblings or children to have the same diagnosis is 4 percent to 18 percent. In addition, relatives of persons with manic-depression are also at increased risk for depression. The chance for siblings or children of a person with manic-depression to have depression is 6 percent to 28 percent.