Depressive Symptoms Associated With Aggression

Violence is not usually considered to be related to depression, yet findings suggest an association between violent behavior and depression or depressive symptoms in many different disorders. A Swedish study compared the criminal records of 47,158 depressed individuals with the records of 898,454 people with no history of depression matched by age and sex.1 Those in the depressed group were approximately 3 times more likely than the general population to commit violent crimes, such as homicide, attempted homicide, aggravated assault, or robbery.

This association was present even when previous histories of violence, self-harm, psychosis, and substance use were taken into consideration. Furthermore, the risk of violent crime significantly increased in individuals with more depressive symptoms.

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