What is depression?

Depression is a severe mental illness which adversely affects the behavior, brain and whole body, as well as drives down the quality of life. In addition, depression has been linked to heart problems too.

Doctors still can’t completely explain how depression and heart disease are linked together. But it is now clear to them that if the patient is depressed and has a heart disease; both conditions have to be treated together for the patient to be well.

Depression and heart disease are the world’s leading cause of disability and death respectively. This combination poses an enormous threat to the general public.

Effects of Depression on the Heart

Doctors have recently deduced from various researches that depression has a major effect on the heart, and concluded that “depression can break your heart.”

Find out how depression can do that:

1. Depression can upset the rhythm of the heart and promote blood clots and inflammation. It can immerse the body in stress hormones which cause blood pressure to rise and the arteries to harden.

2. Depressed people usually smoke, do not watch their diets, do not exercise, and forget their medications, all of which lead to the danger of a heart disease.

3. A study organized in Baltimore, MD observed that those with no history of depression were less likely to have heart disease. And show that those who had a history of depression were four times more prone to having a heart attack within the next 14 years. It showed that depression is another cause of heart disease together with high blood cholesterol and high blood pressure.

4. People who are depressed may make it difficult to take the medications needed that would treat the heart disorder.

5. Depression causes frequent high stages of stress hormones which can trigger the sympathetic nervous system which can have deadly effects on the heart.

6. Emotional distress may instigate very fast heartbeat, high blood pressure and swifter blood clotting, as well as high insulin and cholesterol levels. These dangers, adding obesity, will form a chain of symptoms that will later form signs of  heart disease.

7. A research in Montreal, Canada has concluded that depressed heart patients have a higher probability of dying in the next six months compared to those who were not depressed.

8. People with depression may feel sluggish and yet still have elevated stress hormones, which increases the work of the heart. The body’s healing process is focused away from the tissue repair functions needed in heart disease.

9. Those who suffer from both heart disease and depression have their depressed mood getting in the way for their recovery.

The combination of depression and heart disease is linked with increased sickness and death; it is a very lethal combination that should be managed together.

Doctors believe that knowing the patient’s history of depression will greatly aid the cure by concentrating not so much on the depression itself, but on the behaviors that are a result of the depression. Recovery from depression takes time, but treatments are efficient.