Cerebral Palsy and Mental Health

cp net80“In people with CP, it is sometimes easy for doctors, caregivers, or the person themselves to overlook the importance of mental health…”

Extract from article by Amanda Green

KEEPING CURRENT © AMANDA GREEN, 2018

In 2015, the World Health Organization (WHO) estimated that 322 million people worldwide experience depression and a further 250 million people have an anxiety disorder. If you, or someone in your family, has a mental health issue, you are not alone. 

Mental and physical health are deeply interconnected.  While chronic health conditions such as Cerebral Palsy (CP) can increase the risk of developing anxiety or depression, untreated anxiety or depression can also contribute to poor physical health. 

Mental health issues can disrupt sleep schedules, affect appetite, impact energy levels and disrupt cognitive processes and planning abilities.  They can also affect motivation and make an individual less likely to engage in healthy habits, make an effort to engage socially, or take care of oneself.  All of these things can aggravate or worsen any pre-existing physical health problems. 

Social issues, including accessibility, can sometimes make someone with physical health issues more vulnerable to additional stressors or barriers.  For example, problems with access to transportation could increase social isolation or keep someone from accessing services or employment, and this could further aggravate mental health problems.

In people with CP, it is sometimes easy for doctors, caregivers, or the person themselves to overlook the importance of mental health, or assume that any symptoms experienced by a person with CP are caused by their CP…

 

Read the full article: http://cpnet.canchild.ca/en/resources/297-cerebral-palsy-and-mental-health

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