The wide prevalence of psychiatric disorders has compelled an increasing number of researchers to look into their possible reasons and effects. Though there may be many causes behind a person developing some kind of mental problem, a group of researchers has suggested that patients suffering from asthma and hay fever are more prone to psychiatric illnesses.
The researchers in their study published recently in the journal Frontiers in Psychiatry identified asthma, allergic rhinitis (hay fever) and atopic dermatitis (eczema) among the most common allergic problems. They have stressed how people with the three problems find themselves on an emotional back foot. Looking at the increasing prevalence of comorbidity of allergies and emotional distress, the researchers wanted to check if allergic diseases had anything to do with psychiatric problems.
For study purposes, the researchers looked at details of 46,647 people with allergic problems from the database of health insurance claims in Taiwan over a period of 15 years. They also analyzed data for another 139,941 people without any kind of allergic ailment. The researchers included details of patients of all age groups. An examination of the data revealed that over the 15-year period, roughly 10.8 percent of allergic people under observation suffered from some kind of mental illness when contrasted with nearly 6.7 percent of the study subjects with no sign of allergy problems. An evaluation of the details pinpointed to approximately 1.66 times greater risk of developing psychiatric disorders for people suffering from allergic disease.
The study found that people with signs of atopic dermatitis were less likely to manifest emotional disorientation, whereas those with asthma and allergic rhinitis were at a much higher risk. In addition, the research team found that using certain kinds of asthma medications reduced the risk of asthma patients developing mental problems.
Inflammation is associated with psychiatric disorders like depression
The study suggested that the answer to the link between allergic ailments and mental conditions lies in inflammation problems that are often triggered by allergies. Prior researches have suggested the manner in which inflammation is associated with psychiatric disorders like depression and anxiety. As allergy problems can also result in inflammation, it is quite likely that inflammation may also lead to a host of psychological problems in the same patients.
Though the researchers could not pinpoint at the exact reason why patients suffering from some kind of allergy were more vulnerable to psychological distress, the findings do indicate a possible link between the two diseases. Hence, there is a necessity to take into consideration the same while treating patients afflicted with allergy problems. Elucidating the findings, lead author of the study Dr. Nian-Sheng Tzeng from Tri-Service General Hospital in Taiwan said, “We would like to let clinicians who care for patients with allergic diseases know that their risk for psychiatric diseases may be higher. Assessing their emotional condition and monitoring their mental health could help to avoid later psychiatric problems.”
Making recovery a way of life
People feeling distressed because of their mental health issues often find it difficult to discuss their emotional pain due to stigma. The fear of social isolation binds them to a life of continual pain and unwarranted anxiety. However, it is necessary to see medical intervention provided by specialists at one of the finest anxiety disorder treatment centers in your vicinity.
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