Depression is one of the most common mental health disorders in the country.
According to the American Psychological Association, an estimated one in 10 adults reports suffering from depression.
Depression is often triggered by a lingering health condition like chronic back pain. In fact, many scientists agree that pain and depression are closely related. Depression can cause pain, and pain can trigger depression.
Kanika Massey, 36, has suffered chronic back pain for more than 10 years.
"I had stomach issues and they said that was contributing to some of the back issues I was enduring," Massey told America Now.
Her pain has been so intense, it has triggered periods of severe depression.
"There have been so many times I have laid on my bathroom floor and just cried and said I don't want to do this anymore," Massey said.
Dr. Joe Musacchio is a chiropractor in Matthews, NC, and he has a number of patients like Massey.
"It's hard to function in pain every day--not being able to do the things you want to be doing each day, or to the level that you are used to doing them, and not have it affect your mental state of mind," Musacchio said. "It's absolutely a snowball effect if it's not dealt with, if you don't deal with the underlying problem."
But Massey isn't alone in her suffering.
According to the National Institute of Arthritis and Musculoskeletal and Skin Diseases, 25 percent of adults have at least a day of back pain during a given three-month period.
Furthermore, the American Psychological Association says depression is the most common emotion associated with chronic back pain.
"Back pain can contribute to depression in a lot of ways," Reiland said. "First of all, people aren't feeling great. So, they have the pain they are experiencing that brings them down, brings their mood down, and also, often when people are in pain they start to avoid things people, family, friends. The more they withdraw, the more they start to feel depressed and hopeless and helpless about changing the situation."
The Mayo Clinic says a patient may need a separate treatment plan to get both their pain and depression under control. There are some treatments that can help both.
Since there are shared chemical messengers in our brain, antidepressant medications may be able to relieve pain and depression.
Stress-reduction techniques like yoga, meditation, staying active and journaling may also help.
And there's also psychological counseling.
"A therapist can be extremely helpful for just teaching strategies—things you wouldn't normally know and things your physician may not have time to teach you—strategies for how to go about daily activities or how to think about things that can reduce your feelings of pain and feelings of depression," Reiland said.
Massey said some of her physicians recommended surgeries, but she felt those procedures were too invasive to explore further.
"One of the things that I think people run into is that they are told there is nothing you can do, you have to take this drug, or you need a surgery, and they just stop and don't look any further, "and Musacchio warned, "They do need to push further."
A friend encouraged Kanika to seek chiropractic care which she says has not only eased her back pain, but also improved her outlook on life.
"When you give up and quit, you really don't have any reason to live," and Massey added, "I refuse to believe that I was created not to live."
Lots of people get massages to help ease their pain, but experts say getting a massage may make you feel better temporarily, but if there is a reason for your back pain that isn't being addressed – that's not going to change. So, the temporary relief of a massage may not translate into long-term benefits.
Copyright 2013 America Now. All rights reserved.
The following information is from the American Psychological Association in an article entitled "Psychotherapy works?" (Source: http://www.apa.org/monitor/2012/11/psychotherapy.aspx).
The following information is from Carolinas Healthcare System in Charlotte, NC.
The following information is from the Mayo Clinic in an article entitled "Is there a link between pain and depression? Can depression cause physical pain?
The following information is from the National Institute of Mental Health (Source: http://www.nimh.nih.gov/health/publications/depression-and-chronic-pain/complete-index.shtml)
The following information is from a website called Spine-Health (Source: http://www.spine-health.com/conditions/depression/depression-and-chronic-back-pain)
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