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How Depression Can Increase Your Risk of Heart Disease

    At least one in every 10 American adults is likely to have depression. In addition, most will battle depression at some point in life. Long-term depression may have a significant impact on an individual’s health. There is increasing data pointing out that people who have depression have a higher risk of heart disease. While there are many things you can do to help reduce the risk of having heart disease, it is crucial that you seek adult cardiology care in Riverside if you already have heart disease.

    Depression and your lifestyle

    Depression is not just about feeling blue or sad. It can be a severe illness that affects your lifestyle in different ways. Depression symptoms manifest in different ways. If you have depression, you may experience low mood, loss of interest in things you enjoyed before, and changes in sleep patterns. You may also have negative thoughts regarding yourself, like feeling worthless or seeing yourself as a bad person. At times, you may have suicidal thoughts.

    Depression and your daily habits

    The symptoms you experience when you have depression can cause change within your daily routines and healthy habits. This can, in turn, impact your general health. It is easy for a depressed person to neglect their self-care. You may begin to eat an unhealthy diet and have poor sleep patterns. You also begin to have decreased physical activity. Continuing with these unhealthy habits can lead to weight gain as well as high blood pressure. These two risk factors are associated with heart disease.

    Depression and your vascular health 

    While depression affects your habits and lifestyle, it also influences your physical health. For instance, depression is associated with low-grade inflammation that may contribute to the clogging of arteries. The inflammation may also contribute to increased production of stress hormones, making your blood easily clot.

    How to prevent depression and heart disease

    If you want to combat depression or heart disease, you need to seek help for your depression. Consider talking to a therapist who can offer you appropriate medication and other solutions to help you be well. Also, you want to reduce your stress load by saying no to unnecessary commitments and seeking help or practicing meditation. Stop smoking if you do – it is a major risk for developing heart disease. Try to get enough sleep, and stop drinking. It is easy to turn to alcohol and smoking when you are depressed, but you are doing more harm to yourself when you do this.  You also want to eat foods that allow your body to be healthy. Eat fruits, whole grains, vegetables, and lean meats to help with your depression and avoid heart disease.

    If you have depression and heart problems, you may want to see Syed Bokhari, MD, FACC, a board certified doctor in endovascular medicine. Dr. Bokhari specializes in minimally-invasive procedures to help with the treatment of peripheral arterial disease (PAD). This is a common form of vascular problem that affects the aorta, carotid, and the legs. Dr. Bokhari performs endovenous ablation therapy and offers laser, vanseal, and clarivein procedures to treat venous reflux.