Depression 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.
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