The risk of a mental illness increases if one or more of your family members have a mental disorder, but this increased risk doesn't guarantee that you will develop a mental illness. Not only have some mental illnesses been found to be hereditary in nature, but certain studies have found that some major mental illnesses can be traced to the same genetic variations.
Some hereditary psychiatric disorders are:
1. Obsessive compulsive disorder
Obsessive-compulsive disorder or OCD is a disorder of the brain and behavior. A person suffering from OCD has uncontrollable, recurring thoughts and behaviors they cannot stop repeating. Ocd also causes severe anxiety in such people. In 2000, a study conducted by researchers in Washington d. C. And Baltimore concluded that having one or more ocd family member (s) may increase the chances of you developing it too. In 2010, a study tracked down possible chromosomes that may be responsible for OCD.
Schizophrenia is a chronic mental illness that affects and dictates how a person feels, thinks and behaves. Those suffering from schizophrenia may lose touch with reality and experience delusions, hallucinations, thought disorders and movement disorders. It has been seen that people who have an identical twin with schizophrenia are 50% more likely to develop the disorder and those who have one parent suffering from schizophrenia are 18% more likely to inherit the illness.
Major depression or clinical depression is a common though severe mood disorder. It is characterized by an episode of sadness or apathy along with other symptoms that last at least for two consecutive weeks. Those suffering from depression may feel helpless and worthless, lose all interest in daily activities or activities they used to enjoy and feel unable to take part in normal day-to-day activities. Other symptoms of depression also include sleep pattern and appetite changes, chronic fatigue, concentration or focus problems and physical discomfort. Some patients with depression may become suicidal.
In 2011, a study pinned down a specific chromosome that may trigger depression development. Research on the hereditary properties of depression within families shows that some people are more prone to develop the disorder than others. If you have a parent or sibling that suffers from depression, you might be 1.5 to 3 times more likely to develop depression than those who do not have a close family member suffering from this condition. You are also more prone to developing bipolar disorder in such a scenario.
Related Tip: What Really Causes Personality Disorders?