Ladies, What Depression Does to Your Body?

In fact, many statistics record that depression is much pretty common in women, but it sometime also can affect men. It is categorized into a brain disorder that can cause too much suffering. You may think that it only affect and cause some emotional changes. But did you know that changes that occur in the brain also can result some effects to your body? That’s why, if you have this mood disorder – there is a chance for you to also experience a wide number of physical problems!

Experts have confirmed that this mood disorder is not only able to generate some physical problems, but also may put you at greater chance of developing certain health conditions. Or if you have certain health problem, depression may worsen your illness.

In turn, certain diseases (especially for chronic condition or incurable health condition) also can be potential to trigger depression or anxiety. What else the physical problems that can be generated by this mood disorder to your body? What else you need to know?

Depression and PMDD (Premenstrual Dysphoric Disorder)

Most menstruating women experience PMS /premenstrual syndrome. About 3 out of 4 women have PMS during menstrual period. Premenstrual syndrome is a kind of disorder marked by some physical and emotional changes that typically fluctuate in intensity. The symptoms of PMS usually fluctuate from one menstrual period to the next. This disorder commonly affects 20-30s of menstruating women.

how_does_depression_affect_your_body_illustrationA severe form of PMS is often called PMDD. It is commonly characterized by more highly emotional & physical symptoms that typically will go more severe in the 7-10th days before the day of the onset of menstruation! About 3-5 percent of menstruating women have PMDD, according to WebMD.

Today, PMS and PMDD are recognized as some of major reasons for the discomfort and some behavioral changes in many women. While the scientific evidence for the link between depression, PMS, and PMDD is still not clear, fluctuating levels of hormone and chemical changes in the brain are thought have contribution!

Depression and pregnancy

Several years ago, pregnancy was viewed as a natural barrier to protect the body from psychiatric disorders. But in fact, today the number of pregnant women with depression is almost equal to the number of non-pregnant women who have depression.

It’s still unclear whether pregnancy has a direct contribution to trigger depression. But some experts do believe that the following conditions may increase the risk of developing depression during pregnancy:

  1. Uncertainty issues associated with pregnancy. For example – If you are trying to get pregnant, but you often find negative result from your pregnancy home test kit, this situation may put you at higher chance of having depression.
  2. Having poor social support.
  3. Having poor communication with others. For instance, you live alone, having few friends, etc.
  4. Having marital conflict.
  5. The age of when you are being pregnant – the younger of your age when pregnant, the higher risk that you have of developing depression.
  6. Personal history of PMDD.
  7. Personal history of depression or other mood disorders.

How does depression affect pregnancy?

Depression during pregnancy should be concerned as well. Once it relapses during pregnancy, this may increase the risk of some pregnancy complications. Antidepressant may be prescribed, read also about the decision of using antidepressants during pregnancy!

The potential impact of this mood disorder for pregnant women may include:

  1. It can be potential to interfere with the ability of a pregnant woman to care for her body! As a result, she may be less able or even not able to follow and do the medical recommendations, such as how to eat properly during pregnancy and how to have plenty of rest & sleep a day, etc.
  2. Sometimes it may also encourage a depressed pregnant woman to abuse alcohol and tobacco which then will be harmful for her baby.
  3. Some studies found that depression also can affect the bonding between the mother and baby.

On the other hand, pregnancy may also cause the following problems in depressed women:

  1. As well we know that the efforts to get pregnant and the pregnancy itself may cause additional stress. And if you have had depression before, this stress may trigger for the depression to reoccur and get worse.
  2. Having this mood disorder during pregnancy may increase the risk of having another depression after giving birth (this type often called as postpartum depression).

Physical changes & problems that may occur due to depression

Many people think that this mood disorder is only associated with emotional changes – but in fact, it can be much more than mood changes. The following are some common physical problems that can be generated by depression:

  1. Sleeping problems – such as lack of good sleep (particularly deep sleep), insomnia, or the opposite occurs (oversleeping).
  2. Poor interest in hobbies and even sex. About half of depressed people have lack interest in sex.
  3. Having lack or loss of appetite, which then can cause weight changes (particularly weight loss).
  4. Chronic or excessive fatigue.
  5. Some depressed people may also experience increased pains and aches.

What are the reasons for these physical depression symptoms?

Changes that occur in the brain can affect some body’s systems. For instance, if there is low levels of neurotransmitters (a kind of brain massager, such as serotonin), this may alter the threshold of pain that you feel.