Yesha Callahan

African-American Women Living in Rural Areas Less Likely to Suffer From Depression

Screen Shot 2015-08-06 at 9.51.07 AMDepression is something that affects people from all walks of life, but a recent study shows that African-American women living in rural areas are less likely to suffer from depression, compared to African-American women in larger cities.

The study’s lead author, Addie Weaver from the University of Michigan in Ann Arbor, says that they expected to see similar rates of depression in women across the board in rural areas, since those who live in the country typically have less access to healthcare, are more likely to be isolated, have low health literacy, or be impoverished. These underserved subsets of the population are not studied as much in general, which is another problem that Weaver hopes to alleviate.

“I actually thought we might see higher rates of depression among women of both races. It was a concern of mine that we know so little about African Americans living in rural areas and people living in rural areas in general.”

The researchers used survey data collected between 2001 and 2003 from about 1,800 women in the southern U.S., about 81 percent of whom were African American in a retrospective study. Black women in rural areas had a depression rate of four percent, compared to black women in cities, whose depression rate was more than three times that much — fourteen percent.

Weaver wondered if culture, lifestyle and religion plays a role in the findings, but of course all of that is purely speculation.

Image Credits: Getty

  1. August 6, 2015 - Reply

    Well that goes with anyone living in those areas. You experience less stress because you don’t have the stress of the city on you like traffic and crowded stores. In rural areas you get to enjoy the sights and sounds and the fresh air in your area

  2. August 6, 2015 - Reply

    I keep hearing that… I know someone that moved to North Dakota for a new job and she told me she isn’t sad or depressed like she used to be when she lived in Connecticut.. hmmmm

  3. August 6, 2015 - Reply

    This is an important study. I’m not surprised at the results either. There are many people in the rural areas of America who have a more laid back attitude, who are down to Earth, and have less stress levels. Emotional health is always a vitally important issue. Exercise, communication, and other actions can improve human emotional health too. We all want solutions to help those who suffer from depression and any form of mental health issue. That is why investments in health care, therapy and other resources are necessary in the urban and rural communities. During our daily lives, we go through various experiences. That is why we certainly ought to reflect about our lives, show respect to others, and to show compassion in our daily lives.

  4. August 6, 2015 - Reply

    A lot of Black people in rural areas tend to have multiple generations that live in the same area. There is a lot of family and a close-knit community structure.

  5. August 6, 2015 - Reply

    I thought people in rural areas had higher suicide rates?

  6. August 7, 2015 - Reply

    Black women are more richer and successful than ever and urban cities are “playgrounds” for riches and success. Riches include a loving relationship with a man, higher pay and more job opportunities, better living options. I live in a rural city and I don’t like it. My heart is not here. The men are closed-minded, there aren’t many job opportunities/opportunities for success. I am working my plan and planning my move to get out of the Podunk city I live in and never come back. When I travel to major cities to visit I feel so much happier. I know it’s the rural city I live in, not me.

  7. August 10, 2015 - Reply

    Simple: not many black men around to terrorize them.

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