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American Journal of Epidemiology

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Depression Disorders -- Women


Women suffer depression at higher rates than men. In a meta-analysis using data from 1982-2017, Platt et al. (Am J Epidemiol. XXXX;XXX(XX):XXXX-XXXX) examine trends by age group in the gender depression gap and find no change in the depression gap among adults despite large changes in women's opportunities during the same time period. They do, however, find an increase over time in the gender gap in depression among adolescents. I concur with Platt et al. that likely explanations for their findings involve the social environment. For adult women, the burden of being responsible for the majority of the household labor and the rise in unmarried parenting are likely explanations for why increased paid work opportunities have not resulted in a decrease in the gender gap in depression. For adolescents, the increase may be due to the popularity of social media rising at the same time expectations surrounding beauty and attractiveness heightened for girls and young women. Platt et al.'s piece highlights the relationship between the uneven change of the "gender revolution" and depression.


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