Health Risks Associated with Depression

Depression is a serious issue, and it affects much more than your mental health. Serious depression can cause you to feel sick and can keep you from properly caring for yourself. Here are some of the dangerous risks that are associated with depression.

health risks for depression

Depression can cause you to take up some bad habits, such as overeating, smoking and sleeping poorly. These habits can lead to diabetes or prevent you from managing your diabetes. If you are at risk for developing diabetes or have already been diagnosed with the disease, then you need to work with a medical professional to monitor and control your diabetes and depression.

Cancer Growth

Depression weakens the immune system, which is especially harmful if you have cancer. Studies have shown that cancer patients who suffer from depression may have tumors that grow faster than those who are not depressed, and other research indicates that depression may be linked with a greater risk of cancer recurrence and early death. If you have been diagnosed with cancer and depression, you should talk to your doctor about how to treat your depression so that your cancer treatment is as effective as possible.

Chronic Pain

If you have noticed that you experience chronic pain during your bouts of depression, you are not alone. Depression can make it more difficult for you to bear any pain that your body may be experiencing, and the pain you feel can make your depression worse. Since this can be a vicious cycle, it is important that you seek help so that you can ease your discomfort while treating your depression.

Substance Abuse

Many patients who suffer from depression often turn to drugs and alcohol to treat their symptoms. Substance abuse can make your depression worse, and it can make it harder for you to seek treatment for your feelings of sadness and anxiety. If you find yourself reaching for addictive substances in an effort to overcome your feelings, you may want to talk to a counselor or medical health professional so that you can be treated for depression and substance abuse.


The majority of suicides are caused by depression, and your risk for suicide increases if you abuse drugs or alcohol. If you begin to feel that suicide is the only way that you will find relief from your depression, then you should immediately call 911.

Depression is a serious mental health issue, but it is treatable. If you believe that you suffer from depression, then you should seek help from your primary physician, a therapist or a counselor. These professionals will be able to treat your symptoms so that your mental and physical health will improve.

photo credit: Neil. Moralee via photopin cc



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