Understanding the cycle of depression

Understanding the link between thoughts and emotions when people are depressed could be the key to preventing future relapses say researchers at the University of Calgary.

Researchers are conducting an ongoing study of adults aged 18 to 65 who have experienced depression.

“We’re looking at how to empower people with the awareness and knowledge to be able to prevent their own episodes of depression” says Laurie Ching a doctoral candidate in the clinical psychology program.

According to the Canadian Mental Health Association one in 10 Canadians over 18 suffers from depression — many suffering multiple bouts.

“When you’ve had episodes of depression that habitual way of responding tends to be more negative than for people who have never been depressed” says Ching.

That habit can make people even more susceptible to milder states of depression triggering the cycle of negative thoughts and behaviours.

“That’s not to say people cause their own episodes of depression or are at fault in any way” she says. “It’s more of an empowering thing that you can do something about in changing how you think and how you behave.”