Depressed mood intensifies bouts of pain

Researchers from the University of Oxford came to the conclusion that pain is not accidentally exacerbated at the moment when a person is dressed up or depressed. They wanted to test this phenomenon empirically, and it turned out that the pain intensifies when two factors combine: bodily malaise and psychological depression. Depression and pain are very often combined, but the mechanism of action has so far been poorly understood.

Dr. Chantal Berne and his colleagues used the brain scan method to see how people with certain pain sensations change the intensity of pain depending on how their mood changes. Detailed studies have shown that depressed mood causes impaired neurocirculation in the brain, which directly causes an increase in the perception of pain. A depressed state also causes an even more negative perception of one’s own state, which drives patients even more discouraged.

Dr. Berna says that depressed people find the pain less tolerable, more intense than people who are in a balanced mood. Emotional instability leads to the fact that the pain intensifies, begins to control, in turn, the mood of a person. This studied dependence is extremely important for medicine. It will help in the treatment of seriously ill people. For example, cancer patients, whose mood must be kept at a high level for their recovery. Doctors advise people suffering from headaches or any other pain to control their emotional state.

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