Mental health problems like depression in young adults associated with autism

Turns out, Autism spectrum disorders (ASD), especially without an accompanying intellectual disability, were associated with greater risk for depression in young adults, compared to the general population and siblings without Autism spectrum disorders.

Mental health problems, including depression, are considered common in people with ASD. Understanding depression in people with ASD is important because it can further reduce social function. The identification and treatment of depression in people with ASD may help improve their quality of life.

The researchers examined 223,842 individuals in Sweden followed up to age 27 by 2011, of whom 4,073 were diagnosed with ASD while 219,769 were not diagnosed with it. The researchers, through clinical diagnosis, found that depressive disorders were identified in local and national patient registers.

This was an observational study. Researchers were not intervening for purposes of the study and cannot control all the natural differences that could explain the study findings. Study population may have included people with undiagnosed depression and others may have been misclassified as having depression.

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First Published: Sep 03, 2018 11:05 IST

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