Neglecting mental health can cost you your physical health
Mental health is asignificant part of overall health and well-being. When we ignore our mental health, it can hurt our physical health. It can lead to physical symptoms such as fatigue, headaches, digestive issues, and even heart disease. Ignoring mental health can also lead to an increased risk of developing chronic illnesses such as depression and anxiety. Therefore, it is important to take care of your mental health to maintain good physical health and overall well-being.
Your mental state and emotions affect your physical body – if someone is angry, their body changes at the hormonal, neural, and neuromuscular level by increasing their heart rate, pumping more blood to their muscles, breathing faster, increasing their blood pressure, and more. it is beyond our consciousness. All this happens in seconds. Now imagine how constant stress, depression, and anxiety will affect your physical health in the long run.
Mind and body are known to be intimately connected. Significant stress affects the mind as well as the body. Significant emotional distress is known to be associated with significant disturbances in the immune system that make one vulnerable to infection. A negative mindset can negatively affect how stressful situations are handled and the associated outcomes.
Studies have shown that if depression or anxiety is accompanied by other physical health disorders, it makes them worse:
poor response to treatment,
Poor adherence to treatment
Chances of complications increase
You might be surprised to learn how common it is for depression and anxiety to coexist with and make other physical health disorders worse:
25-45% of heart patients have depression or anxiety
30-35% of patients with stomach and gastrointestinal disorders have depression.
30% of patients with diabetes have comorbid depression
50-60% of patients with lung disorders such as asthma have underlying anxiety or depression
30% of post-stroke patients have depression
50% of patients with Parkinson’s disease and Alzheimer’s have depression
40% of patients with HIV have depression
20-24% of cancer patients have anxiety/depression
Studies have shown that if these mental health problems are not recognized and addressed, these physical disorders do not respond well to treatment and result in poor outcomes. It is therefore important to identify and treat mental health problems in patients with physical health disorders to improve treatment outcomes and quality of life.
These facts tell us again that the days of the mind-body dichotomy are over, mental health should be given its due importance and a holistic approach to treating ailments should be the way forward.
Take care of your mental health and don’t hesitate to seek treatment if necessary.
Mental health is asignificant part of overall well-being. Taking care of your mental health is essential for living a healthy and balanced life. This includes taking time for yourself, engaging in activities that you enjoy, setting realistic goals and expectations, and seeking help when needed.
It is important to recognize the signs of mental illness such as depression or anxiety, and to seek professional help if needed. Taking care of your mental health can also include eating a balanced diet, getting enough sleep, exercising regularly, managing stress levels, and connecting with others.
Self-care is avital part of a healthy lifestyle. Taking time for yourself to relax, enjoy activities that you love, and set realistic goals and expectations can help reduce stress and improve overall well-being. Seeking help when needed is also a key element of self-care – whether it’s professional help or support from family and friends. Taking the time to nurture yourself can lead to increased productivity, improved moods, better relationships, and more satisfaction with life in general.
It is also important to be aware of the warning signs that may indicate a need for additional help or support such as feelings of hopelessness or thoughts of suicide.
Remember, mental health disorders are treatable.