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Importance of good mood

Post by Dr Bhavna Barmi & team on Wednesday, October 26, 2022

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It’s a known fact that laughter brings a feeling of happiness, while anger makes us feel awful and restless. Positive mood is related to many types of helping behavior as well, it serves a huge role in making people feel at ease, which in turn leads them to helping out other individuals, for instance in, charities, donating blood, caring for old parents, etc. 

Good mood can boost our immunity to fight pandemics or even mental illnesses like dementia, depression, heart diseases, etc. It not only affects our physical health but also it has a deep impact on our mental health. 

Research shows anger, hostility and pessimism leading to fairly low chances of recovery from the hovering health issues. However, research also shows how feelings of happiness, gratitude and satisfaction lead to a better heart and brain condition. A particular study even entailed how being with a generally happy partner could help the individual improve his/her health concerns. 

If one is to look into the matter closely, they could see on what grounds the effect of mood impacts the heart and the brain. Intense negative feelings like stress, anger, anxiety or depression plays the role of activating our amygdala (the part of brain that is responsible for handling emotion).

The amygdala then pushes the fight or flight response button, leading to the release of cortisol and adrenaline (they are responsible for making our heart beat faster and for a blood pressure rise, respectively). This takes a toll particularly on people who are suffering from heart issues. 

Negative mood plays an enormous role in transforming blood platelets into clots that eventually builds up and trigger a heart plaque or sometimes even the brain to get all ruptured that unfortunately results in a brain stroke or a heart attack. Accumulation of stress due to prolonged periods of being in a negative state of emotions can increase inflammation and weaken the immune system. 

If our negative moods are not kept at bay, they may inculcate extremely negativebehavior. Trouble falling asleep, lack of exercise, eating a lot or not eating at all and a poor state of sleep would be the eventual result. Conversely, a good mood can help reduce stress by using positivity as a tool that affects brain circuitry. The process of Mindfulness, humor and other mental coping skills play a vital role in helping people stay healthy. Through such techniques, the amount of cortisol in a human body can be easily reduced. 

Good mood can help protect estradiol in women, an estrogen that is vital for a brain to function well.

The better one can regulate stress, the stronger the immune system becomes. Our brain is hard wired for controlling and calming our body down, it is responsible forslowing down the breathing or heart rate. Individuals with a good mood can establish a good relationship or create a strong bond, a contribution of sorts between their body and brain. Ergo, they have a good control over their bodily functions.

Although stress reduction is one of the most pivotal factors in coping with health issues like the heart attack, etc., it’s not the only way. Storing happiness, optimism, practicing gratitude, having a sense of purpose and meaning, etc. in our minds can become a beacon to show light in the times of great discomfort and health conditions. Practicing mindfulness is also an optimal way to cope. It is clearly evident that anything good for the heart is good for the brain too. 

An individual can easily learn to foster feelings of positivity and mindfulness in the times of distress. Regular exercise, staying active and social can also help boost an individual’s mood. Time spent with loved ones may also foster happy feelings and good mood. 

Evidently, the better the mood of a person, the better will his/her mental/physical health would be. People with optimistic nature know how to take good care of themselves. They make sure they’re taking their timely meds, going for routine checkups, eating healthy and exercising. 

Spending time with people who have a dominantly negative presence can also affect a person’s mood. Making a conscious effort in choosing to be happy and staying clear from negativity will help the individual’s overall health. 

 

 

 

Mood Disorders

Mood Disorders are a sort of mental health condition that basically affects an individual’s emotional state. Here, an individual is prone to experiencing elongated intervals of intense happiness or sadness, or both simultaneously considering the situation.  

It is considered a normal behaviour for an individual’s mood to alternate incidental to the pertaining situation. It should be noted that for an official mood disorder diagnosis, the underlying symptoms should be present for over a couple of weeks. Mood disorders are responsible for our behavioural changes, they have the power to affect our ability to perform daily activities such as eating, studying, going to work/school, etc. 

Mood disorders include several types that are as follows:

- Depression

- Dysthymia

- Bipolar disorder

- Substance induced mood disorder

- Mood disorder related to another health condition

The main cause of mood disorders lies in the lack of balance in brain chemicals that may be affected by stressful or impactful life events. It is a tendency for a mood disorder to run into families. 

It is a known fact that we as human are bound to feel sad or depressed at some point of time. However, that’s a normal thing too feel which is transitory in contrast to experiencing a mood disorder that are intense, stay for a prolonged moment of time and are harder to manage. 

Life is full of unpredictable scenarios, little it’s and bit’s that it throws over us can trigger depression or sadness. This is especially high in the case of women, they’re twice as more prone to developing mood disorders than men. If a family member develops depression or bipolar disorder, the risk of them passing involuntarily passing it to their offspring increases ten folds. 

Symptoms of mood disorder

- Feeling Inadequate or worthless

- Feeling hopeless or helpless

- Ongoing sad, anxious, or “empty” mood

- Having low self esteem

- Suicidal thoughts

- Excessive guilt

- Thoughts of running away

- Decreased energy

- Trouble concentrating

- Relationship issues

- Loss of interest in things that were enjoyed previously

- Trouble sleeping/ Sleeping a lot

- Eating a lot/ Not eating much

- Irritability/ hostility/ aggressive behaviour

- Frequent physical ailment complaints

- Indecisive attitude

- Unable to accept failure or rejection

What sets these feelings apart from experiencing them normally is when they are intense and continue over time or even start interfering in the individual’s normal daily life. That is when immediate medical aid should be considered.

A complete medical history along with a professional psychiatric evaluation is usually taken to diagnose a mood disorder. Different types of mood disorders have different types of treatment, that may include: 

- Use of anti depressants and other mood stabilizing medicines

- Psychotherapies

- Family therapy

- And other therapies such as electroconvulsive therapy and trans cranial simulation

- In addition to all the medical/ psychological therapies, the role and support of families during treatment plays a crucial part in the whole process. 

It is of extreme importance to understand that mood disorders can’t be prevented beforehand, however through early diagnosis and proper treatment with trained a psychologist/ psychiatrist, the intensity of the symptoms could be reduced to a point that it does not hinders the daily life of an individual and helps the person to grow normally. 

 

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