Your body aches and your muscles are sore—and not in a good way, like after gym class. On top of that, you’re melancholy, not very hungry, and perfectly satisfied to stay on the couch all day.
Maybe there’s an illness going around. But an equally plausible explanation is depression, which shares physical symptoms with the flu.
“We’ve known for a long time that pain can lead to depression, and now we’re finding that each is a risk for the other,” says Dr. Linda Carroll, a professor at the University of Alberta. She led a study showing that people who suffer from depression are four times as likely to develop intense or disabling neck and low back pain than those who are not depressed.
One way to try regulating that relationship is to minimize stress, which weakens the immune system, making it more susceptible to aches, pains, tense muscles, infections, and other symptoms.
Not easy these days, in which “the flu of modern life has distracted our immune system so much that we actually do have chronic infections lurking beneath the surface,” says Ellen Vora, MD.
Vora points to an emerging theory of depression based around cytokines, which interact with cells of the immune system to regulate the body’s response to disease and infection. That response can make you feel like you want to crawl under a rock.
The most important step to take when that happens—whenever you feel symptoms are interfering with your daily routine—is to talk with your doctor.
“Malaise, lethargy, social withdrawal, decreased appetite, and body aches could be signs of the flu—or it could be a depression that’s dragging you down,” says Melvin G. McInnis, MD, FRCPsych, Director, Heinz Prechter Bipolar Research Program at Michigan Medicine. “Both are treatable.” Read more >>
December 11, 2018, Bloomington, IN—Psychologists at Indiana University have found that a series of self-guided, internet-based therapy platforms effectively reduce depression.
While previous studies examined the effectiveness of individual internet-based cognitive behavioral therapy apps, or iCBT, using a range of methods, this is the first to include patients with more severe depression or additional conditions such as anxiety or alcohol abuse.
“I thought past studies were probably focused on people with very mild depression, those who did not have other mental health problems,” says clinical professor and study leader Lorenzo Lorenzo-Luaces. “To my surprise, that was not the case. The science suggests that these apps and platforms can help a large number of people.” Read more >>
Your bipolar disorder wellness plan, as a parent, should take into account both you AND your children.
By Yvette Adams
Having bipolar disorder and learning to manage one’s condition is not only difficult, it is sometimes near impossible to do. Challenges we face here are insurmountable–from living a chaotic life, living undiagnosed, to finding the right diagnosis to accepting it and then to determining the right combination of medication and therapy to manage your condition. The professional team you work with consists of your therapist, psychiatrist and/or any other medical professional. These relationships need to be managed too. It forms the integral part of your treatment plan.
There’s all of that, and then dealing with bills, marriage and your partner’s needs. Work has its own set of challenges. Then to have a child? Read more >>
July 25, 2019 • Volume 12, Issue 30Subscribe to Hope & Harmony Headlines Taking On Abandonment Issues Do you judge yourself? Do you stay focused on your mind and disregard the feelings in your body? Do you seek comfort in addictive behavior, or make other people responsible for what you’re going through? All...
May 30, 2019 • Volume 12, Issue 22Subscribe to Hope & Harmony Headlines How Getting Active Helps Fend Off Depression Your memory is better and your mood is better, as are other aspects of your daily life. This is your brain on exercise. Research for years has confirmed a link between exercise and...
August 1, 2019 • Volume 12, Issue 31Subscribe to Hope & Harmony Headlines Tracking Symptoms to Prevent Episodes How are your sleuthing skills? If they’re rusty—or nonexistent—it’s time to get out the polish, because being your own detective when it comes to tracking mood swing symptoms can help manage, and perhaps prevent, an...
September 5, 2019 • Volume 12, Issue 36Subscribe to Hope & Harmony Headlines Planning For Your Next Bipolar Depression We like certain things in our lives to be reliable—like our cars, for instance. The depression that follows a manic episode? Absolutely, positively not. But there it is, showing up on cue, disappointingly dependable....