By Tom Miller, ReutersTechnology is so ubiquitous in society that people are reluctant to give up their devices.
Even when they can, they’re not allowed to take them with them.
And for many people, the risk of a device becoming lost is so great that they might want to make sure it’s not on them.
A new study, for example, found that people who had children as young as five years old had a 3.4% higher risk of developing depression than those with children younger than five.
The researchers, led by David Zilberman of the University of Maryland, also found that kids with parents who have more social isolation, who have lower levels of self-esteem and who are less connected to others, were more likely to develop depression.
And a study of more than 2,000 young adults aged 15 to 26 found that while depression was a significant risk factor for young adults, it was not an independent risk factor.
In fact, when the researchers compared depression rates among adults with similar levels of education and income, depression was still not a significant factor, at least not statistically.
The risk of depression was highest among those who had more social ties and fewer positive social connections, including friends, family members and teachers.
For example, about 1 in 10 adults who had a close friend or family member reported a depressive episode, compared with about 1 out of every 6 adults who did not.
“People feel they’re vulnerable,” Zilberman told Reuters Health.
“They think they’re in trouble, they feel that there’s something wrong with them.”
Zilberman and his colleagues also found a link between social isolation and depression, but they did not find a clear relationship between the level of isolation and the risk.
The findings suggest that people with higher levels of social isolation may not have the same risk of becoming depressed as those with lower levels, the researchers said.
“We think we can find a strong link between loneliness and depression,” Zillberman said.
“But it’s difficult to know whether this is because of loneliness itself, or whether loneliness is more prevalent among people who feel lonely, or both.”
Zillberman and colleagues also compared depression and social isolation among young adults who were diagnosed with depression at age 22.
They found that about one in five young adults had been diagnosed with the disorder at some point in their lives.
The young adults also reported lower levels.
“It was very clear that depression is a risk factor with the number of depressive episodes,” Zalberman said.
The findings add to evidence that depression and loneliness are closely linked.
The risk of depressive symptoms is higher among people with a higher level of social ties, and that loneliness is a significant predictor of depression, Zilbergman said, although he did not elaborate.
The study was published online March 9 in the journal Pediatrics.SOURCE: bit.ly/1w9jY7d, bit.