People with Mental Health Concerns More Likely to Have Physical Ailments, Study Finds
A recent study has shown that those who have mental health concerns are more prone to developing physical ailments. The research has shown a positive correlation between those experiencing significant mental health issues and the prevalence of physical maladies, including metabolic diseases, hypertension, and cancer. The research, which was published in the esteemed journal JAMA Psychiatry, included a comprehensive analysis of data derived from a sample size of 194,123 people diagnosed with mental conditions across various geographical locations. This dataset was juxtaposed with a control group consisting of 76,60,590 individuals for comparative purposes.
The study findings revealed that those with mental health conditions had a 1.84 times higher likelihood of reporting multimorbidity compared to the control group. Multimorbidity refers to the co-occurrence of chronic diseases and at least one additional physical health condition in an individual. Lee Smith, Professor of Public Health at Anglia Ruskin University (ARU), Cambridge, said: “Mental health is based on our ability to make choices, form relationships and change the world we live in. Our research clearly shows that people with severe mental illness are more likely to develop physically more than one disease.”
Among other things, the results of the study suggest that people with mental illness have a greater need for comprehensive care. According to Smith, “Underserved treatment for physical comorbidities in people with mental illness compounds the issue, increasing the burden on individuals, their communities and health care systems,”
The study highlights the importance of combating the shame of a mental illness. Smith also addressed the need for a society where people with mental illness can comfortably seek help and get the care they deserve. A more holistic personal approach to care and working to end the stigma associated with mental illness will give them the best chance of living a long and healthy life.