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Our bodies work in mysterious ways.
We often disassociate our mental health from everything else that goes on in our bodies. What we think and feel in our heads isn’t always compatible with our physical traits or well-being. But in taking a more holistic approach, you’ll quickly realize that everything is interconnected.
In this post, we’re going to talk about that mental health connection, in particular, as it relates to heart health. These two vital parts of our bodies have important effects on one another and the more you understand how they work, the healthier you can be.
Putting your mental and physical health first will keep you both happy and healthy for a long time. Let’s find out how to do it.
How Mental Health Affects Heart Health
When we talk about how mental health relates to heart health, we’re mainly talking about anxiety and depression. It may come as no surprise that these conditions, which have such an effect on the way you think and live your life, have great effects on your physical well-being as well.
Not only is depression one of the major risk factors for heart disease, but it leads to behaviors that are also risk factors for heart disease. Anxiety, also, is something that leads to other risk factors.
Related Risk Factors
Often, those that suffer from depression and/or anxiety have more trouble committing to exercise and healthy diets. If you’re already suffering from heart conditions, keeping a healthy diet and lifestyle becomes all the more important, so mental health issues really complicate matters.
Mental health conditions arise from or lead to large amounts of stress, which can have a number of physical effects, including raised blood pressure and heart problems. Many people that suffer from anxiety and depression pick up unhealthy habits like smoking, doing drugs, and drinking alcohol, which all contribute to heart disease.
How Heart Problems Affect Mental Health
Being diagnosed with heart disease or related heart problems can have a negative effect on one’s mental health, as discussed in this article. The existential anxiety that comes after a life-changing diagnosis or event can be overwhelming, not to mention having to cope with the pain and discomfort of these health issues.
There are some studies that have looked into the effects that medication for mental health can have on the human body. Obesity, diabetes, heart attacks, and stroke are all cited as possible side effects of some anti-depressants. When you’re diagnosed with heart problems and a mood disorder, it can really complicate your ability to find the proper treatment for both.
Understanding the Heart and Mental Health Connection
As you can see, there’s an undeniable heart and mental health connection. It’s important to understand this link so that you can discuss the physiological effects of mental health and the psychological effects of heart disease with your doctor. Getting the right treatment for your conditions is the most important way to avoid any major issues down the road.
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