Impacts of Depression On Your Body: Can They Kill?
Impacts of depression can have an influence on your mental health, but it can also have an impact on your physical health.
Depression is a chronic mental health disorder that can impact many elements of a person’s life, from interpersonal connections to physical health.
Because depression is an illness with the potential to have a significant impact, it raises the question of whether it can eventually lead to mortality.
While depression may not kill you, the potential symptoms and associated disorders might lead to worsened overall health and mortality if not appropriately addressed.
Impacts of Depression On health
According to the National Institute of Mental Health (NIMH)Trusted Source, depression and depressive symptoms can both cause and be caused by other disorders.
This could be related to the stress of dealing with the ailment or to actual changes in the brain if you’ve had a previous stroke or are dealing with a disorder like Alzheimer’s or Parkinson’s.
Depression is also common among those who have chronic or long-term illnesses such as:
- cardiovascular disease
- AIDS or HIV
- MS (multiple sclerosis)
- arthritis rheumatoid
According to 2004 research, the existence of preexisting diseases such as diabetes plus depression increases the likelihood of heart issues, negatively impacting a person’s health and longevity.
Other health-related areas affected by depression include appropriate sleep, food, and the propensity for dangerous behaviours such as increased substance use.
Impacts of Depression Sleep cycles
Adequate sleep is essential for good mental health. Sleep is also important for physical health, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC)Trusted Source, as lack of sleep has been linked to a greater incidence of chronic illnesses such as heart disease and diabetes.
According to 2011Trusted Source research, people suffering from depression and other mental health disorders frequently have sleep cycle complications.
According to a 2017 study, insomnia can raise the likelihood of suicide ideation. A 2021 study found direct linkages between higher degrees of sadness and anxiety and individuals who did not have it.
According to a 2020 studyTrusted Source, a lack of proper sleep in early childhood has been linked to borderline personality disorder and psychosis in adolescents.
In severe circumstances, severe insomnia can result in numerous days without sleep as well as brief psychosis and hallucinations.
According to a 2009 studyTrusted Source, patients with depression may have impaired emotional processing during their REM period, exacerbating their symptoms and impairing their sleep.
Diet And Impacts of Depression
Your diet can also have an impact on your physical and emotional wellbeing. Changes in eating habits are a common indication of depression.
Depression has been linked to overeating in certain people, but it has also been linked to decreased appetite or a person’s willingness to prepare or consume food.
Depressive feelings can also lead to eating habits that aren’t good for your body, influencing how you feel physically overall.
Because enough nutrition is required for bodies and minds to operate properly, this can lead to a negative loop. A 2017 reviewTrusted Source discovered links between vitamin D, folic acid, and vitamin B-12 deficits and depression.
Use of drugs
Approximately half of the persons with substance use disorders have a diagnosed mental health issue, according to NIMHTrusted Source.
One in every four deaths in the United States is caused by the use of alcohol, cigarettes, or illegal drugs. Furthermore, substance abuse is one of the biggest risk factors for suicide.
Alcohol, prescription drugs, and illegal substances are all utilized as coping mechanisms for depression and other mental health disorders.
According to NIMH experts, the link between substance use and mental health issues has the potential to change their position in cause and effect since substance misuse can lead to mental health conditions and mental health conditions can lead to substance abuse.
Another cause for self-medicating for depression and other mental health concerns is the ongoing stigma associated with mental health and a lack of access to adequate mental health care.
While there are more virtual possibilities, not everyone has access to the internet, health insurance, or can afford care.
What steps can be taken?
While depression cannot be totally eradicated, there are strategies to treat the problem both individually and on a larger scale.
You can lessen the impact of stress on your body by addressing your depressive symptoms.
Systemically addressing depression-related death
Better access to mental health services: Greater access to mental health services would be a significant step forward for persons who are currently dealing with depression.
People from marginalized populations may be more inclined to seek mental health support if they feel recognized and understood by mental health experts.
Methods for dealing with depressive symptoms
It’s no secret that some days are more difficult than others for individuals who live with depression on a daily basis.
There may be moments when it is difficult to get out of bed or converse with loved ones about what might be beneficial.
Some recommendations for reducing your symptoms before they get severe include:
Developing a safety plan
Identifying the steps you need to do to keep yourself safe is unlikely to be possible in the heat of the moment.
When you’re in a clear headspace, attempt to write down action steps and share them with someone you trust so they can best support you.
Make it a habit to get enough sleep, eat regularly, and drink enough water.
We all have times when we aren’t as organised as we would want. However, it may be easier to fall into a routine rather than try to build one when you’re already not feeling well.
Maintain contact with your loved ones.
It’s not necessary to provide daily updates about your mental health, but let people know where you’re at. People that care about you want to help you, but they won’t know when or how if you don’t share.
Set aside time for yourself.
This could include:
- scheduling time for journaling or art
- peaceful meditation time
- preparing your favourite dinner
- spending time alone at the beach
There is no wrong answer, but making time to centre yourself is critical for your general health and well-being.
Let us review.
- Depression is a serious disorder that can have an impact on your daily life. To cope, some people may develop physical health problems or engage in dangerous habits.
- While depressive symptoms can have an impact on your physical health over time, it is not an unavoidable conclusion.
- The first step is to understand how depression affects your body. Taking action to control your symptoms can help lessen the physical side effects of depression.
- Keep in mind that you are not alone. You have loved ones who want to help you, as well as support groups and mental health specialists who can lead you through coping strategies.