Depression Chapter 5

Depression and Neurotransmitters


How Emotions Are Regulated

Neurotransmitters, the chemicals released by axons at the neural synapses, are an important key to how emotions may be regulated in your brain. About 50 neurotransmitters have been identified. READ MORE

It’s thought that in certain disease states the flow of these neurotransmitters between neurons may be faulty. Researchers have discovered associations between depression and three primary neurotransmitters: serotonin, norepinephrine, and dopamine. Associations have also been found between depression and a less-common neurotransmitter, gamma-aminobutyric acid (GABA). LESS



Of all the neurotransmitters, serotonin is perhaps the most implicated in the cause and treatment of major psychological and physiological disorders. These disorders include depression, anxiety, obsessive-compulsive disorder, schizophrenia, stroke, obesity, hypertension, and vascular disorders. READ MORE

Many studies have found that the flow of the neurotransmitter serotonin is defective in people with depression. The serotonin molecules flow back to their originating site on the axon, instead of to receptors on the dendrite. This means the electrical impulse isn’t transmitted properly along the neural pathway. That's why many antidepressant medications aim at enhancing serotonin activity at the nerve synapse. LESS

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