Background: Depression is a common, under-recognized disorder that causes a great burden on the individual, the family and the community. Depressive symptomatology has serious effects on the psychological and medical condition of patients, and also disrupts their well-being and daily activities. The aim of the present study was to investigate the prevalence of depressive symptomatology in the Israeli population, and its relation to demographic variables and perceived health. Methods: A random sample of 937 Israeli adults filled out the Beck Depression Inventory (BDI) together with a demographic questionnaire. Results: 21.5% scored positively for depressive symptomatology (BDI > 9). 3.8% reached a BDI score in the range of severe depression. Female gender, old age, lower education, immigrant status, manual work and lower income were associated with increased rates of depressive symptomatology. Poor perceived health was also associated with depressive symptomatology. Conclusions: The rates of depressive symptomatology in this study are similar to those found in other studies, performed mostly in Western countries. Despite several methodological limitations, we conclude that the rate and the demographic risk factors of depression in Israel are similar to that of other developed and Western countries.
|Number of pages
|Israel Journal of Psychiatry and Related Sciences
|Published - 2003