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Relation between physical and mental health
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Relation between physical and mental health

Post by Dr. Bhavna Barmi & team on Wednesday, September 21, 2022

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Most of us naturally think of physical health - things like exercise, a nutritious diet, drinking water, etc., when we hear the word ''health''. And although maintaining our physical health is critical for keeping our body in good form and working properly, maintaining our mental health is just as crucial for leading a healthy and fulfilling life.

The relationship between them is sometimes misinterpreted because they’re thought of as two distinct entities. However, for our own well-being, these two entities must frequently cooperate. Our physical and mental well-being are directly correlated with one another. One cannot function to its optimum capacity if the other has been left uncared for. 

Emotional, psychological, and social well-being are all parts of mental health. It affects our behaviour, perception, and cognition as well as how we cope with stress, interact with others, and make decisions. Subjective well-being, perceived self-efficacy, autonomy, competence, generational reliance, and self-actualization of one's intellectual and emotional potential are only a few examples of what is considered to be mental health.

On the other hand, we are already aware of what constitutes our physical health- it is the condition and efficiency of our physical body.

According to the Mental Health Foundation, both poor physical and mental health might increase the likelihood of certain disorders. Poor physical health can also increase the risk of developing mental health problems.

Similar to physical health problems, mental health problems can present with a wide range of symptoms. People can experience many types of mental health issues, with varying degrees of severity in the symptoms. Bereavement, the end of a relationship or work, the emergence of a health condition, or feeling overly pressed by obligations in life can all be detrimental to our mental health. Anxiety and sadness are the most typical mental health conditions that might arise. Negative self-talk, low energy levels, changes in mood or behaviour, loneliness, difficulty managing stress, changes in sleeping or eating routines, and feelings of sadness or depression are all signs of poor mental health.

Impact of mental health Issues on physical health

Any of the aforementioned symptoms may not always indicate that you have a mental condition. When symptoms of poor mental health become common and begin to interfere with your capacity to physically function in daily life, it is considered to be a mental health issue (mental illness). Your physical and behavioural well-being can both be impacted by your mental health.

According to studies, people with depression experience changes in how their bodies work, which could have a negative effect on their physical health. These alterations include:

  • Higher inflammation
  • Continual tiredness
  • Alterations in the regulation of the heartbeat and blood flow
  • Abnormal stress hormone levels
  • Insomnia
  • Metabolic alterations similar to those reported in diabetics at risk


Impact of physical Health on mental health

On the other side of the coin, working on your physical fitness and health can not only help you live longer, but it can also make you happier and lower your risk of developing mental illnesses. People who are fit and active have more energy throughout the day, have better sleep, feel more at ease, and have more optimistic thoughts about their lives in general.

Exercise is a powerful remedy for many common mental health issues. Studies reveal that it can cure mild to moderate depression as successfully as antidepressants, as well as reduce ADHD symptoms and help in treating anxiety.

The relationship between physical and mental health is complicated, but the solution is straightforward: for your body to work effectively and for you to lead a happy and healthy life, both physical and mental health are required. It's acceptable to choose to concentrate on one over the other if you are having trouble in one particular area. Just bear in mind how they are interconnected and how crucial it is to maintain your physical and mental wellness.

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