How Depression Can Negatively Impact Your Health

It is normal to feel sad, but if this lasts for several months, it may be an indication that you are battling depression. While many people respond to antidepressant medications, some need advanced help with their symptoms.  The San Diego psychiatrist at MindSet offers personalized repetitive transcranial magnetic stimulation (PrTMS®) to improve your mood and quality of life.

Symptoms indicating major depression

Depression is a mood disorder that rests in persistent feelings of worthlessness, sadness, and loss of interest in your favorite activities.  Also known as major depressive disorder, this condition affects your behavior, thinking, and feelings and can lead to physical and emotional problems.  During depression episodes, you may feel like life is not worth the trouble and have difficulty going about your daily activities.  Depression is not just a mood or weakness you can snap out of and become jolly again.  It requires long-term treatment with emotional and physical support from medical experts and family.

Although this disorder only manifests once in a person’s lifetime, there may be several episodes with uncomfortable symptoms.  Such symptoms include restlessness, anxiety or agitation, sowed speaking, thinking and body movements, lack of energy and tiredness, sleep disturbances such as insomnia, angry outbursts, and reduced appetite.  These symptoms are severe enough for most people to disrupt their day-to-day activities like school, work, and social activities.

The negative effects of depression on your body

Depression doesn’t only affect your mood; if left untreated, it can interfere with your general wellness.  Some of the effects of depression on health include:

  • Central nervous system

Depression can result in several symptoms within your central nervous system, which you can easily ignore.  Older adults may experience difficulty with their cognitive abilities, and it is easy to dismiss these symptoms as they are similar to those associated with old age.  Depression may result in chronic body aches that don’t respond to medication.  This disorder may also make it difficult for you to adhere to your typical work schedule and social obligations.

  • Digestive system

Although depression is perceived as a mental disorder, it can also interfere with your nutrition and appetite.  Some people cope with depressive symptoms by bingeing or overeating, which can lead to obesity-related conditions like type 2 diabetes.  Others may lose their appetite and fail to eat adequate nutritious food.  Loss of appetite in adults is known as gastric anorexia.  An eating disorder can result in malnutrition, constipation, stomachaches, and cramps.

  • Cardiovascular and immune systems

Stress and depression are closely related.  Stress hormones tighten your blood vessels and speed your heart rate creating a prolonged state of emergency, which can eventually cause heart disease.  Cardiovascular problems associated with depression include high cholesterol, high blood pressure, and diabetes.  Adults aged 40-79 with depression have a higher chance of developing atherosclerotic cardiovascular disease for about ten years.  Depression and stress may also negatively impact your immune system, making you vulnerable to diseases and infections.

If you struggle with constant feelings of worthlessness or sadness, call the MindSet office or book an appointment online for comprehensive care.

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