As you all know by now, I battle both depression and anxiety on a day-to-day basis. One thing you may not know is that I also have both severe asthma and allergies and have for my entire life. Some may think that physical illness/health has nothing or very little do with mental health, but that’s not true.
When my allergies bog me down physically, it heightens my mental illness. I’m more anxious and sluggish than normal because I’m worried about missing school or work due to feeling bad, or just simply not being able to do normal things. This is when I’m most likely to procrastinate and sleep or isolate myself; this in turn only worsens the anxiety later on.
Not being able to breath very well because of asthma induces anxiety attacks and other symptoms of the sort. It also brings out more intense depression manifestations as I reflect on my poor health.
If you have both physical and cognitive issues that influence your daily activities, it is wise to educate yourself on whether or not the two could be related and feeding off of each other. This may not always be the case, but if it is, this realization could open tons of doors for tackling two problems at once. For example, my asthma of course causes difficulty breathing, which then produces anxiety. I’ve learned that both meditation and simple breathing exercises can effectively help me reduce both of these matters.
Another thing to think about here is any medications you take and their potential side effects. While it is common knowledge that not everyone who takes a specific prescription will experience all, or even any, possible side effects, it is still worth the research.
Recently, I discovered that the numerous prescriptions I take to combat my asthma and allergies all have the ability to INCREASE both anxiety disorders and depression. Therefore, I am currently working with a pharmacist to go through the actual probability that this is happening to me, or if my mental illness is completely separate from my medications. I will give more information on this at a later date.
Side effects are listed for a medication when ANY of the subjects in the medicine’s trial period experience them, even if it’s only one person. Don’t just assume your medication is the sole reason for your symptom(s), talk to a doctor or pharmacist instead as they’ll be more likely to be able to help pin point the real source.
Your mental and physical health always go hand in hand. Just like exercise can cause euphoria, ensuring your mental well being can have tremendous results on your body. The two are a team here and it is important to focus on improving both, not just one.
“Physical strength will get you to the start line, but mental strength will get you to the finish line.”