Many depression patients have other diseases at the same time, thus lowering their quality of health. Depression symptoms also affect the patients' well-being and cause them to use unhealthy habits to cope.
The National Institute of Mental Health (NIMH) notes that depression is often seen with other illnesses. Some of them are neurological, such as Parkinson's disease and strokes, while others are related to lifestyle, such as heart disease and diabetes.
Depression can also occur in patients with fatal diseases, such as cancer and HIV/AIDS. Patients who suffer from depression and another disease have worse symptoms of both diseases when compared with non-depression patients. These patients also have higher medical costs, because they are treating two illnesses, and may have more trouble adapting to their symptoms.
Health problems that people with depression deal with include but are not limited to the following:
-- High blood pressure
-- High cholesterol
-- Chronic fatigue
-- Heart disease
-- Skin problems, i.e. psoriasis, eczema
-- Thyroid problems
Note: The good news is that the majority of these health problems can be treated (without the need for medications) by eating a healthy diet, exercising, and making other lifestyle changes.