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How do mental health problems affect the body?

Depression is one of the most common mental health problems we see today. People who are depressed use up so much of their energy being sad that they do not have enough left to eat or hydrate properly. They have poor personal hygiene and cannot fully function in or out of their homes. Their immunity, skin integrity and functionality all suffer. Once the depression is treated, it no longer consumes the same amount of energy, allowing the body to restore its former healthy functioning.

Mental illness can have serious effects on the body. Changes in eating patterns, for example, can cause significant weight loss or weight gain, while the inability to handle activities of daily living can lead to poor food choices. Lack of personal hygiene can lead to dental and skin problems. Substance abuse can cause serious physical problems, such as liver disease. Violent behavior can lead to injury. Mental illness can also weaken your immune system, which makes you more likely to get sick. People with mental illness may also have trouble remembering to take any medicines they may need.

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Important: This content reflects information from various individuals and organizations and may offer alternative or opposing points of view. It should not be used for medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. As always, you should consult with your healthcare provider about your specific health needs.