Research Findings from LEDS1. A third of people have a severe life event every year
Severe life events (those that are highly threatening or unpleasant) are fairly common with about a third of people experiencing one in any given year.
2. Most severe events involve close relationships
Among events rated as severe, three quarters involved close relationships and these events are more likely to lead to depression outcomes.
3. Severe events precede mental & physical health problems
Severe events have been rated as preceding the onset of depression, anxiety, schizophrenia and physical health problems.
4. Severe events linked to a difficulty increase likelihood of depression
Severe events arising from an ongoing difficulty of at least 6 months duration are much more highly related to onset of depression than other severe life events.
5. Severe events interact with adult vulnerabilities
When life events occur in combination with adult vulnerability factors such as family conflict, lack of a close confiding friend and low self esteem the risk of onset of depression raises more than fourfold.
6. Severe events matter for children too
Using the LEDS with children has found a similar role for stressor and disorder, but with chronic difficulties having more of a prominent role.
Further research findings can be viewed here.