Are Anxiety And Depression Inter-connected Disorders?

Anxiety and depression are often thought of as related disorders, if you get one you will also get the other, a person who is depressed will also be anxious. Is this True? Actually, anxiety and depression are two different forms of mental health disorders and it is quite possible to have a depressive disorder and not suffer with anxiety and vice versa. However a person suffering with depression may also get very anxious about being depressed and if this continues over a period of time he or she may also suffer an anxiety disorder. This also works in the same way for an anxious person who feels down and depressed about forever being anxious, so an anxiety disorder can lead to depression.

Anxiety is characterised as a feeling of extreme fear, if this fear occurs regularly it could lead to generalised anxiety disorder or one of the many anxiety disorders recognised today. Over time acute anxiety will develop into a chronic condition.

Depression on the other hand is characterised as a feeling of extreme sadness and a lack of interest in life in general with everything appearing pointless. Feeling down or having a case of the blues over an extended period can lead to a depressive disorder.

So, anxiety and depression can be connected in some sufferers but that is not true for everyone, some people who have had a lifelong anxiety disorder never actually suffer with depression and vice versa.

Because of the similarities in these mental health disorders they are often treated in the same way. Doctors will prescribe an anti-depressant, usually one of the newer ssri’s to someone who is suffering with an anxiety disorder as these medications have been proven over time and from much research to be effective in treating both disorders. Also the more recently introduced talking therapies such as cognitive behavioural therapy can also be used to treat anxiety and depression.

Natural ways found to be effective in treating these two disorders include:

 

  • Exercise – beneficial to both mind and body, exercise is a proven way of  treating both anxiety and depression
  • Relaxation – calming effects minimises tension in the muscles and reduces adrenalin levels
  • Abdominal breathing techniques – these will concentrate mind and body allowing no room for anxious or depressive thoughts
  • Healthy eating habits –  avoiding too much sugar, caffeine, fatty foods and processed foods with high levels of artificial additives

 

As always, speak to your doctor about anxiety or depression treatments that will be best suited to your particular situation.

 

© Andrew Tudor Jones