How Treating Depression Aids Both Mental Health and Physical Health
When a person is living with depression, it can impact their everyday quality of life. It can also impact their physical health. The connection between mental health and physical health is strong. And just as chronic illness may lead to depression, depression can deepen the symptoms of physical illness. If you treat depression effectively it can actually help to alleviate some physical discomforts associated with chronic medical conditions.
The mental health and physical health link works in both directions. If you have untreated depression, you are more susceptible to some physical conditions such as heart disease, irritable bowel, stroke, back pain or certain kinds of cancer. On the flip side, patients living with these kinds of chronic illnesses are more vulnerable to developing depression. Thus, whichever came first, the association between mental health and physical health persists.
By treating your depression you can significantly impact your physical health and your quality of life. Treatment for depression may include use of antidepressant medication, but not necessarily. Sometimes, lifestyle changes such as adding moderate exercise into your daily schedule and paying attention to your sleep routine (sleep hygiene) can be enough to turn things around. A short-term course of cognitive behavioral therapy which helps you learn to take charge of thought patterns is another way to help clear the fog of depression.
What matters most is that you realize the importance of addressing depression. It could trigger other health matters or make existing health matters worse. Either way, taking steps to address your depression is a smart move. At Family Guidance Center we can help you find the treatment which will be most effective in dealing with your depression. Call us today and take the first step toward a better quality of life.