Heart and soul influence each other: dejection, anxiety, anger and stress can affect the cardiovascular system and thus trigger or worsen diseases in the long term. But heart disease, in turn, can also lead to depression.
The field of psychocardiology combines knowledge from psychosomatics, psychology, sociology, occupational medicine and cardiology to find out to what extent the soul influences the course and treatment of cardiovascular diseases. The American H. Flanders Dunbar is considered a pioneer; she studied the links between heart. Psyche already in the 40s at a New York clinic de. Flanders Dunbar is considered a pioneer; she studied the connections between heart. psyche as early as the 1940s at a New York clinic. The greatest influence, however, was exerted by large international studies in which – actually only in passing – psychological sensitivities were queried. The most important is the Framingham Heart Study, a long-term study that has been investigating the links between heart disease and a wide variety of risk factors since 1948.
Coronary artery disease occurs when fatty and calciferous deposits narrow the coronary arteries and the heart muscle no longer receives an adequate supply of blood. Coronary heart disease is the leading cause of death in Germany; about one-fifth of all people die from it. Studies have shown that depressives have an increased risk of suffering heart attacks, strokes and circulatory disorders of the leg and pelvic arteries.
The physical risk factors for developing heart disease have been known for a long time. People who smoke, weigh too much and don't exercise risk cardiovascular disease in the long term; in addition, untreated lipid metabolism disorders, high blood prere and diabetes.
"Several studies since 1984 at the Helmholtz Zentrum have shown a similarly high heart risk for depression as for the classic risks of smoking, high blood prere, obesity and high cholesterol levels."
Prof. Dr. But the soul can also influence the course of this heart-. Circulatory diseases influence. Depressed patients are often more likely to have an unhealthy lifestyle, and their heart disease is therefore generally more severe. After diagnosis, they have greater difficulty than people with less mental strain in giving up unhealthy habits and persevering through treatment as planned.
Illness makes depressive
But cardiovascular disease can also have a negative effect on the mind: depression, fears about the future of family and career, confrontation with one's own mortality, impending operations, medications with severe side effects and chronic pain – all this can lead to depression, which in turn makes treatment more difficult. A vicious circle from which patients can only escape if soul and body are treated holistically.