Yes. Research states that individuals with down’s syndrome show many vulnerabilities and are exposed to high levels of stressors that can lead to an increased risk of depression.
Apart from general risk factors for depression, several risk factors exist that are specific to people with down’s syndrome, such as smaller hippocampal volumes, certain changes in neurotransmitter systems, deficits in language and working memory, attachment behaviours, and frequently occurring somatic disorders. Protective factors reduce their vulnerability to depression.
According to the Down’s Syndrome Association, people who have learning disability are about 2.5 times more likely to have a mental health condition. However, only about 1 in 10 of such people receive any treatment for it.
The diagnosis of depression in down’s syndrome is primarily based on the characteristics that can be observed as self-reporting cannot be reliable for people with the condition. Therefore, the use of modified diagnostic criteria is advised. It is very important to have witness reports that can be relied upon from the people close to the person concerned who can observe them objectively and describe their behavioural changes.
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