Effects of Depression in Your Body
Depression is one of the most common mental health illnesses in the United States, affecting about 26 percent of adults. Depression is technically a mental disorder, but it also affects your physical health and well-being.
Sadness touches all of our lives at different times, but depression can have enormous depth and staying power. It is more than a passing bout of sadness or dejection, or feeling down in the dumps. It can leave you feeling continuously burdened and can sap the joy out of once-pleasurable activities.
Below are some of the most common symptoms of depression, as well as how depression can affect your entire body, especially if left untreated.
- Feelings of sadness or emptiness
- Trouble with memory or decision
- Preoccupation with death
- Risk of heart attack
- Feelings of clinginess
- Constricted blood vessels
- Increased pain sensitivity
- Lower sex-drive
- Weakened immune system
Feeling sad or anxious at times is a normal part of life, but if these feelings last more than two weeks they could be symptoms of depression. It’s estimated that each year 17 million American adults will experience depression. However, clinical depression, especially left untreated, can interrupt your day-to-day life and cause a ripple effect of additional symptoms.
Depression affects how you feel and can also cause changes in your body. Major depression (a more advanced form of depression) is considered a serious medical condition that may have a dramatic effect on your quality of life.