Depression and bipolar disorder often coexist with other mental or physical conditions, referred to as “comorbidity”. Conditions that may be worsened by mood disorders include substance use, anxiety disorders, eating disorders, heart disease, stroke, cancer, HIV/AIDS, diabetes, and Parkinson’s disease. 

A great deal of research in the field of “whole health” (also called “mind-body medicine” or “integrated health”), is currently underway to explore the relationship between depression and physical illnesses. Treating mood disorders can help people manage other illnesses and improve their general health. Here are conditions commonly seen with mood disorders:

It is important to let your providers know all aspects. Sharing how you’re doing physically and mentally paints a more complete picture for all of your providers which can lead to better wellness outcomes. Our Wellness Tracker and Wellness Wheel can help you connect your physical and mental health. Sharing those assessments with your providers helps overall communication and treatment outcomes.

Medication Interactions

Medications used to treat other illnesses may interfere with the medication you are taking for your depression. This can prevent the medication from being effective or cause more side effects. Regardless of the type of medication, be sure that all of your doctors and your pharmacist know about all of the medications you are taking so they can check for any interactions.

Certain medications can:

  • Contribute to your mood disorder or make your moods less stable.
  • Have side effects that look like symptoms of mood disorders (confusion, aches, weight or sleep changes).
  • Interact with one another, which can change their effectiveness.

It is important to tell your doctor about all of the symptoms you are experiencing and all other illnesses for which you are receiving treatment. Always read the medication interaction information your doctor or pharmacist gives you.

Offer your family doctor, heart specialist, or other physician materials about mood disorders from DBSA  to help them start discussions with you and other patients. Encourage your doctors to ask all of their patients whether they have symptoms of depression.