Diabetics More Prone to Depression, Stress

 

The disease known as diabetes is commonly associated with straightforwardly physical health problems, such as obesity or unhealthy habits, such as smoking tobacco. However, recent research suggests that the havoc wrought by diabetes may extend beyond the body. According to researchers, the presence of the condition alongside mental health problems may dramatically increase the morbidity associated with heart disease.  

Hidden Vulnerabilities  

According to one study, individuals with diabetes are significantly more susceptible to depression and stress. Furthermore, when these three conditions exist simultaneously in the same individual, the risk of dying from heart disease is twice as high than individuals without any of these medical issues. The research, which demonstrates the intimate link between mental and physical health, draws attention to the importance of physicians and psychiatrists conducting more holistic investigations of the mental and physical health of patients. Since the body and brain never exist apart from one another, physicians ought to be concerned with the mental health about their patients, and psychiatrists ought to be concerned with the physical health of their patients.  

Vulnerable Demographics  

The researchers analyzed data from almost 22,000 adults, approximately 4,100 of whom had diabetes. Those with diabetes who suffered from either stress or depression were 53 percent more susceptible to heart disease than diabetics who did not suffer from either of these health problems. The average age of the participants was 64, 58 percent of whom were women, 56 percent of whom lived in the southeastern region of the U.S. known as the “Stroke Belt,” and 42 percent of whom were black.   

Indeed, those with heightened stress, depression, or both, were more likely to be black, poor, female or live in the Stroke Belt. The research highlights the importance of addressing the possible existence of specific health and lifestyle unique among such demographics that may contribute to the risk of these conditions, as well as taking seriously the possibility of discrimination and marginalization of such groups, which contributing to the onset and severity of these conditions.