They’ve concluded that good mental health can reduce the risk of cardiovascular disease and improve overall heart health. This also means that when there are existing mental health conditions. These conditions include depression, anxiety, stress, PTSD, isolation, loneliness, pessimism and anger. There can be negative health risks, including heart complications.
It’s interesting that the AHA’s statement on the direct connection between mental health and heart health comes as the coronavirus pandemic continues to have a negative effect on people’s mental health. There is so much isolation associated with the pandemic. We can’t do many things we enjoy, we can’t go places we normally would go, we can’t be close to people we would normally hang out with, and we have to limit human touch in order to be safe….all issues that are playing a role in the increase in mental health complaints across the country.
According to a poll released by the Kaiser Family Foundation, 45% of adults say the pandemic is having a negative effect on their mental health. The rate increases for women, Hispanic, and Black adults, with those populations more likely to report a “major” mental health impact.
The good news is there are some very easy ways to begin to improve one’s mental health. Which in turn can positively affect heart health. Mindfulness practices, meditation, journaling, and therapy have all been shown to help reduce anxiety, depression and stress. Exercise, getting outside, and eating a healthy diet can also help elevate moods, which can lead to positive mental health.
If you feel ready to address any mental health concerns you may have, please call 608-222-7311. Our trained staff is ready to assist you, and will help you find the help you need to address your concerns, and get back to feeling more like yourself. For more resources, click here.
*If you feel you may be experiencing a heart issue, please call 911 immediately.