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Know how Serotonin affects your mental health

February 19, 2019

In India, mental health is not given the priority and importance that it deserves. Most people tend to overlook their mental wellbeing and ignore symptoms such as anxiety, stress and depression leading to worsening of the problems.

Depression is a mental illness and affects millions of people across the world. Depression can occur due to several reasons. Today we will talk about how Serotonin can affect mental health and cause depression.

Serotonin is a chemical found in our bodies and serves a wide range of functions. It regulates the nervous system, body temperatures, muscle tone and digestion among other functions.

According to Anupama Kapur, the senior-most Psychologist associated with 'Unlimited Potentialities', Serotonin plays a vital role in our lives.

It is an important chemical and neurotransmitter found in our brain. It works to relay signals from one neuron or brain cell to the other in our brain. Lack or low levels of serotonin are linked to our mental and physical well-being. It directly affects our mood, thinking, sleep and appetite. It has been linked to illnesses such as Depression in which all the above are affected. Exercise and certain types of food can increase serotonin levels.

The imbalance of Serotonin levels in our body causes many health issues. Here are some symptoms of Serotonin imbalance.

  1. Feeling stressed and anxious often, worrying frequently.

  2. Depression

  3. Sleep disturbances, light sleeping, insomnia.

  4. Mood swings and change in temper, suicidal thoughts.

  5. Lack of confidence, low self-esteem.

  6. Craving for sweet food

  7. Feeling tired all the time.

  8. Migraine and headaches

  9. Digestion related issues.

  10. Pain sensitivity

Dr Venkat Iyer is a Psychiatrist and has been successfully treating patients with Serotonin deficiency for years.

He spoke to NewzHook about why Serotonin is important for us.

"Serotonin is happiness neurotransmitter secreted in the brain which relieve stress in daily life. It's precursor is tryptophan which is available in fruits, all especially Banana and Curd which is not sour. The deficiency of Serotonin can cause many physical Illnesses besides depression and anxiety."

Dr Iyer stresses on the need for awareness about mental health in our society. Many people suffer in silence as they feel embarrassed to talk about their mental health problems due to the stigma.

There is nothing to be ashamed of if you need help of a professional, it will help you lead a better and happier life. Do seek help from Psychiatrist if you sense any of the Serotonin deficiency signs in yourself or your loved ones.

ALSO READ: Parenting Corner - Autism in girls



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