Everyone experiences pain at some point, but for those with depression and anxiety, pain can become particularly
intense and hard to treat. People suffering from depression, for example, tend to experience more severe and long-lasting pain than other people.
Muscle tension, body soreness, headaches- pain like these may be all too familiar for people with anxiety disorders.
In fact, Pain can be a common symptom and sometimes a good indicator of an anxiety disorder, particularly generalized anxiety disorder (GAD). Beyond everyday aches and pains, some people will also suffer a diagnosed chronic pain disease such as arthritis or fibromyalgia. And a co-occurring chronic pain disease can make functioning even more difficult for someone with an anxiety disorder.
The overlap of depression and pain is particularly evident in chronic and sometimes disabling pain syndromes such as fibromyalgia, irritable bowel syndrome, low back pain, headaches, and nerve pain. Psychiatric disorders not only contribute to pain intensity but also to increased risk of disability. Researchers once thought the relationship between pain, anxiety, and depression resulted mainly from psychological rather than biological factors. Chronic pain is depressing, and likewise, major depression may feel physically painful. But as researchers have learned more about how the brain works, and how the nervous system interacts with other parts of the body, they have discovered that pain shares some biological mechanisms with anxiety and depression.
Treatment is challenging when pain overlaps with anxiety and depression. Focus on pain can mask both the clinician’s and patient’s awareness that a psychiatric disorder is also present. Even when both types of problems are correctly diagnosed, they can be difficult to treat.
Medical treatment and counseling can often help relieve symptoms for both, but lifestyle remedies, such as a healthful diet, can also boost a person’s well-being.
There is no specific diet to treat depression but eating more nutrients that nourish the body may help in building up an effective mechanism of the body to fight physical and mental pains. The role of natural dietary supplements certainly can not be undermined and should be considered to keep healthy and fit.
1. https://www.health.harvard.edu/healthbeat/the-pain anxiety-depression-connection
2. https://adaa.org/understanding-anxiety/related illnesses/other-related-conditions/chronic-pain