For people living in Tennessee who are suffering from a mental illness, or who know someone who does, understanding the risks of violence is an important part of day to day life. Depression is one of the most common mental health disorders.
Depression, along with anxiety, is one of the two most commonly diagnosed mental illnesses. It is typically characterized by low mood, lack of enjoyment in life, physical symptoms like tiredness, and a variety of other markers. None of these symptoms is directly or indirectly connected to violence. Although there is a lot of fear and stigma associated with mental illness, clinically, there is no linkage between a diagnosis of depression and committing acts of violence.
The risk of violence
Most people who are diagnosed with depression will never commit an act of violence. Generally, this requires some other factor, such as elevated stress, a confrontation, a substance abuse problem, or something else. These are forces that can affect anyone, not just people who have depression. In some ways people with depression are even less likely to be violent because they are less elevated and motivated to act. This is not necessarily true for all mental illness, and it is not impossible for people with depression to be violent, but there is no reason to expect them to be any different from anyone else.
Mental illness is a delicate subject. While it may seem as though mental illness can cause people’s behavior to become unstable and potentially violent, that does not describe people who have been diagnosed with depression, and the stigma can be more damaging than the risk of violence itself.