The Psychological Impact of Chronic Venous Disease
Living with chronic venous disease (CVD) can have a huge psychological impact on a person’s life. CVD is a health condition in which the veins are not able to efficiently pump blood back to the heart, resulting in an accumulation of fluid in the legs, causing swelling, pain and other uncomfortable symptoms. Not only can this be physically disabling, but it is also often associated with numerous psychological difficulties.
How Does CVD Impact Mental Health?
People living with CVD tend to suffer from various emotional distress, such as depression, anxiety and other negative thoughts. A recent survey found that up to 40 percent of CVD patients reported clinically significant depressive symptoms. This can be a result of the negative physical symptoms of CVD, such as pain, tiredness, and insomnia, as well as feelings of helplessness, guilt and shame due to their inability to participate in physical activity and work.
Coping and Support Strategies
Given the serious mental health implications associated with CVD, it is important for sufferers to have access to the right coping and support strategies to help them manage their symptoms. Here are some actionable steps to help cope with CVD:
- Open up to family and friends: Talking about the condition with family and friends can help reduce the feeling of burden and provide additional support. It is also beneficial to connect with other CVD patients to share experiences and advice.
- Consult a doctor: Speak to a doctor about the physical and emotional symptoms of CVD to determine the right type of treatment plan.
- Develop healthy habits: Developing healthy habits, such as eating a balanced diet, maintaining a healthy weight, abstaining from smoking and alcohol and staying physically active, can help to reduce the symptoms of CVD.
- Use relaxation techniques: Relaxation techniques such as yoga, meditation and massage can help to reduce stress, reduce numbness and improve circulation.
Living with CVD can be an emotionally taxing condition, but it is important to remember that there are ways to cope and reduce symptoms. By speaking to a doctor, connecting with other CVD patients, and making lifestyle changes, it is possible to effectively manage CVD and live a full life.