Even though mood and anxiety disorders are mental illnesses, they can take a serious physical toll on the body in addition to adversely impacting quality of life.
Mood disorders can increase your risk for heart disease, diabetes, cancer, vitamin deficiencies and hepatitis. Depression also commonly occurs alongside neurological disorders, including Parkinson’s and Alzheimer’s diseases, multiple sclerosis, strokes and brain tumors. Among those suffering from a medical condition, depression can mimic the other illness and intensify symptoms.
Anxiety disorders also come with serious physical complications. The anxious response triggers a flood of chemicals to be released into the body, preparing the body to respond (fight or flight). However, prolonged and significant anxiety often results in a serious imbalance that can contribute to health risks including:
- Weakened immune system/vulnerability to viral infections
- Depressed appetite/nutritional deficiencies
- Excretory and digestive issues, including IBS
- Increased risk of diabetes, high blood pressure and heart disease
- Increased risk of coronary events (especially among individuals with heart disease).
Mood and anxiety disorders carry a heightened risk of suicide. In fact, upwards of 90 percent of those who commit suicide have a diagnosable and treatable mental illness.
Mood and anxiety disorders require multi-disciplinary treatment
Because of the health risks associated with mood and anxiety disorders, it is important that you or a loved one work with a collaborative treatment team that includes a physician, psychiatrist and therapist.
In addition to providing treatment for eating disorders, Eating Recovery Center also provides multi-disciplinary care for patients with mood and eating disorders. If you or a loved one is suffering, please call 877-825-8584 to schedule a free, confidential consultation with an ERC Masters-level clinician.