Type 2 diabetes and depression have long been linked, but which one came first? Scientists at the Huazhong University of Science and Technology and various other research facilities in China found being depressed raised the risk of developing Type 2 diabetes in 8784 individuals. Their work was reported on in the medical journal Affective Disorders in February of 2018.

People who had depression during the past year were more likely to develop Type 2 diabetes than those who did not suffer such depression …

  • the participants with depressive symptoms who did not merit the diagnosis of a full-blown major depressive disorder were 19 percent more likely to develop Type 2 diabetes than individuals without depression, and
  • those participants who had the major depressive disorder were 31 percent more likely to be diagnosed with Type 2 diabetes.

Stress and low self-esteem can lead to depression. Finding healthy ways of handling stress and raising self-esteem can help lower your risk …

  • getting sufficient rest,
  • eating a healthy diet, and
  • getting enough exercise

can also help. During difficult times there is a tendency to isolate ourselves but reaching out to other people and developing a support system are also ideal ways to lower stress and prevent depression.

If depression is already a problem, it is time to seek professional help. If depression lasts more than two weeks without an apparent cause, for example, the death of a loved one, is it diagnosed as a major depressive disorder? Your family doctor can perform tests to make sure you are not having symptoms of any other conditions, such as …

  • low thyroid hormone levels,
  • a vitamin deficiency,
  • brain tumor, or
  • anemia.

If all tests show standard results, then your primary doctor can refer you to a specialist. Talking with a psychiatrist or psychologist can be very effective. If symptoms persist, medications can be prescribed.

Types of antidepressants –

Selective serotonin reuptake inhibitors (SSRIs), the most commonly prescribed antidepressants include …

  • citalopram (Celexa)
  • escitalopram (Lexapro),
  • fluoxetine (Prozac),
  • paroxetine (Paxil)
  • sertraline (Zoloft), and
  • vilazodone (Viibryd).

Atypical antidepressants include …

  • bupropion (Wellbutrin, also used for smoking cessation)
  • mirtazapine (Remeron)
  • nefazodone, (Serzone, Dutonin, and Nefadar).

Tricyclic antidepressants are sold using but may be prescribed for some people.

Anyone with depression should consider seeing their family doctor for testing for Type 2 diabetes, especially if other risk factors are involved …

  • being overweight or obese,
  • have a family history of diabetes in parents or siblings,
  • lead a sedentary lifestyle,
  • have high blood pressure,
  • have abnormal cholesterol levels (low HDL, high LDL), and blood fats.