Depression is a serious, but common, illness: One in 10 adults report experiencing depression, and the condition is the most common cause of disability in the United States. The lifetime risk of any individual person becoming depressed is around 17 percent, and most people have their first bout of depression in their late teens or early twenties. The condition is slightly more common among women, but some researchers speculate that this may be because men are less likely to seek help or because their symptoms are more likely to manifest as anger than sadness.
Depression’s symptoms can vary greatly from person to person and may even change throughout the course of the illness. Symptoms may also vary depending on an individual’s gender, culture, or age. Adolescents experiencing depression might appear irritable and agitated, and women may be more likely to admit to depression than men, while certain cultural groups might mask their feelings or display them differently
Depression is one of the most common reasons people seek therapy, and the condition is highly treatable.