The cause of mood disorders and why they develop in certain individuals has been a largely debated and researched topic within the scientific community for many years. This is because once one can understand the cause, it is easier to treat and possibly prevent.
In this article, we will discuss whether mood disorders are hereditary and whether genetic testing for mood disorders is possible, as well as how this could benefit individuals.
What Mood Disorders Are Genetic?
Multiple mood disorders have been identified as being hereditary. Some of these disorders include major depression and bipolar disorder. It has been found that adults that have relatives affected by bipolar disorder are at far more risk of developing the mood disorder. This relation can increase an individual’s risk by tenfold and more depending on how close the relation to the affected relative is.
Thus, an individual whose parents or siblings are affected by bipolar disorder has a far higher chance of developing this mood disorder than someone whose cousin is affected.
What Characterizes Bipolar Disorder
Bipolar disorder can be characterized by extreme mood, energy, and behavioural changes. The disorder consists of two main moods known as manic and depressive episodes. While experiencing the manic episode the individual will typically display an increase in energy, irritability, activity, restlessness, and struggle to sleep. Symptoms of a depressive episode include low energy, a decrease in activity, feeling unable to participate in and complete simple, daily tasks as well as a feeling of hopelessness. Both manic and depressive episodes can result in hallucinations and delusions.
Genetic Markers for Bipolar Disorder
Over the past few years, a variety of genetic markers have been identified that are linked to bipolar disorder. These genetic markers include SLC6A4, TPH2, DRD4, SLC6A3, DAOA, DTNBP1, NRG1, DISC1 and BDNF. Due to the large focus on bipolar research, it is now possible to perform a genetic test for bipolar. This test will allow you to determine what your chances are of developing bipolar disorder. This will allow you to identify the signs early on and start treatment early. Prevention is always better than cure.
At Geneway we have an at-home genetic test available that can test for stress and mood disorders. Contact us to find out more about the GENEWELL test and how you can find out more about your genetic health requirements.