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How does mental health affect physical health

How does mental health affect physical health?

Mental health problems don’t happen in isolation. Studies show that 46% of people with a mental disorder have a long-term physical problem. Research shows that, on average, people with a serious mental illness have a life expectancy of 20 years lower compared to the general population, often the cause of death is due to a preventable physical illness.

People affected by a mental health problem are more likely to suffer from other pathologies such as diabetes, heart disease, and colon and breast cancer, for example.

Therefore, when it comes to mental health or physical health, they should not be treated separately because there are many associations between mental health and chronic diseases that have a significant impact on people.

There is no health without mental health.

We can never separate mental Health and physical Health from each other. They always go together and form a balance representing the general state of the health of a person. As defined in the WHO Constitution, Health is a state of whole mental, physical, and social well-being. It is not only made by the absence of disease or infirmity.”

Mental Health is, therefore, the basis of an individual’s well-being and will determine their ability to meet the demands and issues of everyday life.

Also, mental health depends a lot on a person’s physical state of health, and vice versa.

The link between mental and physical health shows that certain physical diseases (cancer, diabetes, STIs, cardiovascular diseases) can cause depression in some individuals affected by them. Conversely, people with mental disorders (bipolar disorder, schizophrenia, depression, anxiety, addictions, etc.) will be more likely to develop or worsen physical illnesses.

A taboo to break and a balance to find.

Unfortunately, mental well-being is still a taboo subject among students and those concerned who do not want to converse about it. It is because of their dread of being categorized or defined as subject to certain mental disorders; blame it on the mistaken comparison between mental health and mental illness.

It is said that because of the taboos surrounding the mind, people living with disabilities or mental handicaps are stigmatized, even excluded from society.

Despite these ever-hot topics, mental health is a dynamic balance between the different spheres of life and must include physical fitness. There are still several questions on this subject and many debates, in particular.

People would find a balance more quickly if this question were not so difficult to access, and if tongues were loosened little by little.

Mental and physical health is a binomial that should not be separated.

Mental Health and Physical Health have often been treated separately, and this doesn’t seem right. When choosing health coverage, it is essential to note that it covers both mental health and physical health thanks to a health insurance comparator. Health is not only the absence of disease. It is an integral state of physical and psychological well-being. In this way, you can see that it is a binomial that should not be separated if you want to deal with the matter properly.

Consequences of mental Health on physical health and side effects of medication.

Mental Health has various consequences on physical health. The first consequence concerns the side effects of the medication. Often disorders or diseases of the mind are treated with medication in conjunction with psychological therapy. This medication (like the one used to treat any physical illness) can have side effects.

It can have adverse impacts on the physical health of people with physical or mental illnesses, for example, by causing rapid weight gain that can impact health. Sometimes patients do not receive enough information about the medications they take and the effects they can cause.

  • Depression and anxiety escalate the risk of heart disease.

Depression is one of the significant health problems in the world. The WHO predicts that in 2020, depression will be the leading cause of disability of the population worldwide. Also, several studies link anxiety and depression with an increased risk of death from cardiovascular disease and cancer. These kinds of diseases are more likely to develop if the person is not in good mental health. It is how studies that relate to both problems defend it.

  • Feeling tired and exhausted from mental health problems.

Another consequence of a bad state of mental health in the body is the feeling of tiredness and exhaustion. It can be the symptom of a multitude of diseases, so it is not usually associated with depression or anxiety. A person can even experience pain due to a psychological disorder that can lead to:

  • Reduction of your daily tasks
  • Lack of concentration
  • Increased feeling of sadness
  • Change in your daily routines.

How do physical illnesses affect the mind?

The effect can also be observed in reverse; that is, physical health affects mental health. It occurs more frequently when the person suffers from chronic or life-threatening illnesses that end up causing negative thoughts. The most common consequence is that you develop some depression if you suffer from:

  • Cancer
  • AIDS
  • Obesity
  • Diabetes
  • Gastrointestinal diseases
  • Some heart disease.

Besides, you are likely to experience episodes of stress and distress. In these cases, professionals strongly recommend treating these psychological conditions as well since the patient may face a depressive, anxiety, panic, phobic disorder, or an eating disorder. 

  • Stress and Health.

The notion here is not to discredit the healthcare system, but rather to shed light on the evidence that proves that physical and mental health are inextricably linked. If your body or mind is under stress, the whole thing is. We are aware of this for a long time. Now scientific researches prove us right as well.

  • Diagnosis and monitoring.

Often the physical ailments of a person with a mental disorder are seen as one more manifestation of their illness rather than being treated as a separate condition or illness. It can cause a delay in treating these people’s physical ailments. In addition, if physical health checks are not carried out on these patients, for example, in primary care, to identify possible ailments of this type, treatment will take even longer to arrive.

  • Diagnostic error in physical health associated with mental health.

In contrast, it can also be counterproductive if mental and physical health is not separated. It can lead to errors in the diagnosis and follow-up of physical illnesses that are associated in advance with mental health without making the necessary checks. It slows down the application of a medical solution, reducing its effectiveness.

Physical and mental health go hand in hand.

Failure to assess these two parameters together makes it difficult to prevent and treat non-communicable diseases, which are the ones that represent the most significant burden on health systems. The truth is that the relationship between physical and mental or brain health is not something new. However, again the advances of recent years in the knowledge of our brain have consolidated this vision.

Providing the appropriate treatment for the improvement of mental health will have a positive impact on physical health. Although it is not broadly recognized, some researches prove that mood influences the body and highlight the significance of having an optimistic approach towards any disease for a more favorable evolution.

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