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Does Poverty Cause People to Lose Hope?

Like everything else in life, there are different degrees and contexts to losing hope. It can range from general sadness or dissatisfaction to clinical depression. And although poverty is not the sole cause of any person’s dissatisfaction or depression, there is a connection. “People who live in poverty appear to be at higher risk for mental illnesses. They also report lower levels of happiness.” The NPR article continues, “And there's growing evidence that levels of depression are higher in poorer countries than in wealthier ones.” 

Why would poverty cause greater levels of sadness, dissatisfaction and depression? It generally comes down to their environment. This is twofold. The physical environment has a massive impact on mental health. The