Causes

As with most psychiatric disorders, a variety of factors contribute to the causation of depression and other mood disorders. This has well been expressed by NICE (http://www.nice.org.uk/page.aspx?o=236667):

The enormous variation in the presentation, course and outcomes of depressive illnesses is reflected in the breadth of theoretical explanations for their aetiology, including genetic, biochemical and endocrine, psychological and social processes and/or factors. . . . Most now believe that all these factors influence an individual's vulnerability to depression, although it is likely that for different people living in different circumstances, precisely how these factors interact and influence that vulnerability will vary between individuals.

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