Chemical Imbalance and Depression

Topics: Dopamine, Serotonin, Psychology Pages: 4 (906 words) Published: November 25, 2012
Chemical Imbalance and Depression
Melissa Creamer
PSYC 3002- Developing a Psychology Perspective
Project Draft - Persuasive Paper
Capella University
October 2012

According to some Psychologists, chemical imbalance can lead to depression and other mental illnesses. It is very unclear that depression is one of the possible symptoms of a chemical imbalance. However, chemical imbalance doesn’t lead to every kind of depression seen in the lives of many people.(Admin,2012) Approximately five percent of the United States' population experiences a depressive episode that requires psychopharmacological treatment; in any one year, ten to twelve million Americans are affected by depression, with the condition twice as common in females than in males.(Ho, 2002) We all have chemical signals that are called neurotransmitters and they come in a variety of forms like Serotonin, Dopamine, and Norepinephrine. All three of these neurotransmitters play a very important role in maintaining normal mood, motivation and concentration. What is Serotonin?

Serotonin acts as a neurotransmitter, a type of chemical that helps relay signals from one area of the brain to another. (Bouchez, 2007) In depressed brains, the Serotonin signal had been somehow weakened because of a chemical imbalance in the neurotransmitters. (Mukherjee, 2012) Low Serotonin levels are often attributed to anxiety, depression, panic attacks, insomnia, obesity, eating disorders, migraines, and alcohol abuse.(Integrative Psychiatry, 2012)Treatment for increasing levels of Serotonin in the brain are medication like Prozac, Zoloft, and Paxil. These medications are known to work by making more serotonin in the brain. (Carver, 2002) If we have too much Serotonin you will have this feeling of bliss and it can also produce a life threatening condition known as Serotonin Syndrome. To date there have been no recorded or documented studies proving that the brain levels...

References: Admin (2012). Is depression caused by chemical imbalance in the brain? Retrieved from
Bouchez, Colette, (2007). Serotonin: 9 Questions and Answers. Article is a WebMD feature. Retrieved from
Carver, Joseph MD, (2002). The “Chemical Imbalance” in mental health problems. Retrieved from
Christensen, Stephen, (2011). Depression treatment with dopamine. Retrieved from
Ho, Kathryn, (2002). Serotonin & Depression. Retrieved from
Integrative psychiatry, (2012). Serotonin. Retrieved from

Mukherjee, Siddhartha, (2012). Post-Prozac Nation. The Science and History of Treating Depression. Retrieved from
WebMD, (2005). Dopamine may play new role in depression. Article is from WebMD news archive. Retrieved from http://www.webmd/depression/news/20050728/dopamine-may-play-new-role-in-depression.
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