Persistent Depressive Disorder - Causes

Not ready to share? Read other Patient Comments

What caused your persistent depressive disorder?

Share your story with others:

MedicineNet appreciates your comment. Your comment may be displayed on the site and will always be published anonymously.Patient Comments FAQs

Enter your Comment

Tell us a bit about your background to make your comments more useful to other MedicineNet users. (Optional)

Screen Name: *

Gender of Patient: Male Female

Age Range of Patient:

I am a: Patient Caregiver

* Screen Name will appear next to the published comment. Please do not include your full name or email address.

By submitting your comment, and other materials (collectively referred to as a "Submission") to MedicineNet, you grant MedicineNet permission to use, copy, transmit, publish, display, edit and modify your Submission in connection with its Web site. MedicineNet will not pay you for your Submission. You represent that you have all rights necessary for MedicineNet to use your Submission as set forth above.

Please keep these guidelines in mind when writing your comment:

  • Please make sure you address the question asked.
  • Due to the overwhelming number of comments received, not all comments will be published.
  • When selecting comments to publish, our staff will choose those that are educational and complement the topic. Please try to stay on topic.
  • Your comment may be edited. We would typically edit comments to make them clearer and more readable. We will remove personal information such as last names, email and web addresses, and other potentially harmful information.
  • We will not notify you if your comment has been published. We suggest that you check back on the topic article regularly.
  • We do not provide medical or healthcare advice, treatment, or diagnosis.

Thank you for participating!

I have read and agree to abide by the MedicineNet Terms and Conditions and the MedicineNet Privacy Policy (required).

To prevent our systems from spam, please complete the following prior to submitting your comment.

Please select the white triangle:

What are causes and risk factors for persistent depressive disorder?

As with most mental-health disorders, persistent depressive disorder does not have a single definitive cause. Rather, people with this illness tend to have a number of biological, psychological, and environmental contributing factors that contribute to its occurrence. Different parts of the brain of people with persistent depressive disorder tend to respond differently to negative emotions like fear and sadness, as well as to some physical sensations compared to the brains of people without the disorder. Genetic risk factors for developing persistent depressive disorder include the tendency for those who suffer from this illness to have a family member who also suffers from either persistent depressive disorder, major depression, or a personality disorder. Significant stress during childhood or adulthood (like exposure to neglect, abuse, or community violence) and having negative social supports are some psychosocial risk factors for persistent depressive disorder.

Return to Dysthymia

See what others are saying

Comment from: Meg, 45-54 Female (Patient) Published: November 18

I feel like dysthymia set in to my life in early childhood. My father was an abusive alcoholic and my mother was a passive aggressive codependent. I never felt love from either of them. I loved in fear. I was chosen to be the scapegoat. I was chosen to care for my younger siblings when my mother disappeared for days. I felt a profound sense of abandonment. I felt profound sadness and worry. I used to hear dogs barking at night and wonder if they were barking at my mother. Sometimes she would take us with her and we would sleep in vacant houses for two or three nights. Other times we would sleep in Laundromats or the bushes. We would have to find coke bottles and get deposit money so we could eat; we went hungry for days. We lived in fear of our drunk father. One night he came outside and started shooting a gun; we were hiding in the empty house across the street. I always felt depressed in childhood and it has continued throughout my life. I don't have many friends, only two. My children rarely talk to me. I am single and live a very lonely life.

Was this comment helpful?Yes
Comment from: David, 45-54 Male (Patient) Published: December 01

If I had to name the root cause for my dysthymia, I would say it was stress and lack of support. Stress from being raised in a family with one parent an alcoholic and the other trying hard to maintain a roof over our head and not much time to get involved with me. I followed my peer group and made many mistakes I now realize. After the passing of one parent it was still hard for the other one to keep it all together, so there was even less interaction with parents. My social anxiety kicked in around puberty 12 or so and made me want to run, not walk from any situation that trigger stress, just about anything that happened in school. I missed a lot of opportunities and just made graduation by the skin of my teeth. I am now trying to reinvent myself into the person I wanted to be as a child, confident in my abilities and happy with myself.

Was this comment helpful?Yes


Get the latest health and medical information delivered direct to your inbox!

Health Solutions From Our Sponsors