The influx of cortisol triggered by depression also causes the amygdala to enlarge. This is a part of the brain associated with emotional responses. When it becomes larger and more active, it causes sleep disturbances, changes in activity levels, and changes in other hormones. Brain inflammation.
What part of the brain changes with depression?
The main subcortical limbic brain regions implicated in depression are the amygdala, hippocampus, and the dorsomedial thalamus. Both structural and functional abnormalities in these areas have been found in depression. Decreased hippocampal volumes (10, 25) have been noted in subjects with depression.
How does anxiety and depression affect the brain?
Untreated anxiety and depression can actually shrink regions of the brain, including: Hippocampus, the region of the brain primarily responsible for long-term memory. The hippocampus also plays an important role in regulating our emotional responses.
Is brain damage from depression reversible?
Pioneering work by Yvette Sheline, Wayne Drevets, and others has shown the chronic depression decreases the size of the hippocampus, damages parts of the anterior cingulate and other pathways within the brain. The good news is, some of this damage can be reversed.