Depression is likely to increase among men in the coming years, according to American psychiatrists.
Dr Boadie Dunlop and Tanja Mletzko, writing in the British Journal of Psychiatry, predict that significant changes to the economic and social environment of Western countries will result in a rise in incidence. These include greater encouragement in society for men to discuss their feelings and "profound restructruing" in the economy, with traditional male jobs associated with heavy industry being outsourced to low and middle income countries, or becoming obsolete as technology advances.
Dr Dunlop said: "Dubbed by some the ‘Mancession', the economic downturn has hit men particularly hard because of its disproportionate effect on traditional male industries such as construction and manufacturing. Research has shown that roughly 75% of jobs lost in the United States since the beginning of the recession in 2007 were held by men. There is little reason to believe that traditional male jobs will return in significant numbers with economic recovery.
"Furthermore, Western women are increasingly becoming the primary household earners, with 22% of wives earning more than their husbands in 2007, versus only 4% in 1970. Compared to women, men attach greater importance to their roles as providers and protectors of their families, and men's failure to fulfil the role of breadwinner is associated with greater depression and marital conflict."