Depression is probably the oldest disease that has plagued man. The medical term ‘depressive disorder’ is a group of symptoms that reflects an extremely sad or grief-stricken mood. The intensity of sadness is greater in severity and duration compared to normal bouts of sadness.
What is depression?
There are three types of depression, major depression, dysthymia and bipolar disorder. Major depression interferes with our ability to work study or do any pleasurable activity. Dysthymia keeps one away from feeling good for prolonged periods of time. Bipolar disorder is characterized by fluctuating mood changes and ranges from manic behavior (highs) to depression (lows)
Here are the eight effects of depression on the body:
- Insomnia: Inability to sleep. At times, the regular pattern of sleep is broken frequently with the person breaking up in the middle of the sleep, feeling restless. The person tends to wake up early and is not able to go back to sleep
- Weight fluctuations: The person begins to forego food, resulting in weight loss. In other occasions, he or she may begin to overeat or do less physical activity, resulting in weight gain.
- Physical symptoms: The physical symptoms associated with depression include fatigue, headache, digestive related problems, body ache etc.
- Depression affects people according to their ages. Children who are depressed may feel insecure, demanding, irritable while older people start developing physical disorders like stroke, Parkinson’s disease, cardiovascular disease and chronic obstructive pulmonary disease
- Thyroid Disease: There is a definite connection between the thyroid disease and depression. Thyroid patients have the highest cases of depression than the average people.
- Increased DHEA levels: Depression is when the stress makes the adrenal glands to break down, increasing cortisol levels and reducing DHEA levels in the glands. Due to high levels of cortisol in the blood, a person starts getting more worried, feels more anxious and even ends up being a schizophrenic
- Decline in libido: The person begins to experience a dip in libido and some of the common sexual problems like decreased potency, premature ejaculation and lack of vaginal lubrication happen due to depression
- Heart related problems and blood pressure: Depression worsens and increases the risk of coronary heart disease. It is also a leading cause of stroke and high blood pressure. The leading cause of heart disease is documented to be stress and depression. The relationship between depression and heart disease has not yet been well understood but it is a proven thing that an agitated mindset or a sad, depressed mood can be the cause of blood pressure related and heart problems.
Study Case: The Physical Effects of Depression