Although depression and chronic anxiety can sometimes seem like they’ve come out of the blue, they usually develop through a mix of factors such as: genetics, biology, life events and personality styles. Let’s look closer at each one.

Genetics: Depression and chronic anxiety tend to run in families. That’s why your doctor will want to know about your family history.

Biology: Some people with these illnesses are thought to have an imbalance in naturally occurring brain chemicals called neurotransmitters. It’s believed that this imbalance leads to many of the emotional, behavioural and physical symptoms.

Life events: Going through a number of stressful life events, or traumas (such as serious illness , abuse, divorce or losing a meaningful job) can make some people more vulnerable to depression or chronic anxiety.

Personality styles: Traits like being self-critical, or having low self-esteem can also put people at greater risk.