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Are you suffering from endometriosis for quite some time now? Look for symptoms of depression in you as endometriosis can lead to stress and ultimately depression.

Endometriosis is a common gynecological disorder. which is experienced frequently. As many as eleven percent women also suffer from the disease silently without ever knowing they have it. [1] Endometriosis is characterized by cyclic pelvic pain, menstrual dysfunction, and painful sexual intercourse. [2]

Endometriosis has a huge negative impact on sufferers' quality of life, because:

  • Endometriosis and infertility often go hand and hand — this condition is one of the leading causes of infertility. 
  • Many women with endometriosis experience painful sexual intercourse (dyspareunia). This disrupts your sex life and can even create relationship problems. 
  • The anatomy of genital tract is also disrupted. This interferes with the transport of eggs in the genital tract and the implantation of an embryo in the womb. The inflammatory effect of ectopic endometriotic tissue on the normal lining of the uterus also causes implantation or conception failures. [3]
It is, unfortunately, still not entirely clear why endometriosis occurs. There is some evidence that this condition is partially genetic in nature, as researchers have noticed that the risk of developing this disease is higher in close relatives of the women who suffer from endometriosis. [4]

One theory suggests that endometriosis develops when the cells containing menstrual tissues flow backward into the fallopian tubes and ovaries. Cells of menstrual lining become implanted in other places and start growing. There are other theories too. [5]

While endometriosis has various physical symptoms, it affects sufferers' mental health as well

Can Endometriosis Cause Depression?

Endometriosis, diagnosed or not, comes with debilitating physical symptoms that greatly impact your daily life. It is no surprise, then, that your emotional health is affected as well. Pain, infertility, and physical limitations can cause both stress and depression. Therefore, mental treatment is also suggested along with physical treatments. [6]

How Does Endometriosis Cause Depression?

There are various aspects of this disease that can lead to depression. Dyspareunia, that is painful sexual intercourse, can lead to relationship problems and cause stress. Pain affects your quality of life, and your social life and professional life are impaired in the process. [7]

Another very important aspect of endometriosis is infertility. How to get pregnant with endometriosis is a worrisome question which has an impact on the lives of many women with endometriosis, who would like to conceive a baby. This further leads to stress and eventually depression.

What Are The Symptoms Of Depression?

Recognizing the symptoms of depression will help you access timely treatment. 

There are many symptoms of depression, which include a low mood, social isolation, difficulty in falling and staying asleep, low self-esteem, a lack of motivation to keep up with your physical appearance, no interest in engaging in activities which you previously found meaningful, and hopelessness. [8]

“Can endometriosis lead to depression?” may sound like an invalid question to the people who consider it to be an exclusively physical disorder but are not aware of its mental effects. However, depression in endometriosis suffering women is real.

Suicidal thoughts are an alarming symptom of depression. People who suffer from severe depression can even commit suicide. This makes the proper treatment of depression even more necessary.

What Are The Treatment Option For Depression?

Endometriosis can lead to depression and this aspect of the disease shouldn’t be underestimated. If you suffer from endometriosis, you should look for any symptoms of depression and keep your doctor informed about them.

Both physical and mental treatments are recommended to endometriosis suffering women who are depressed. [6] Symptoms of depression should be promptly addressed.

There are various treatment options for depression which are chosen according to the stage of the disease and the patient’s response to the given treatment.

The first and most commonly used treatment option is cognitive behavioral therapy (CBT) by a psychologist. It is usually used for mild depression where the patient doesn’t need drugs, and involves therapy sessions during which therapist and patient seek to discover the underlying thought patterns causing depression. CBT is a short-term treatment that has been proven to be very effective. [9]

Drugs that belong to different classes are also prescribed to treat depression. These antidepressant drugs are combined with cognitive behavioral therapy (CBT) for better results. Other advanced treatment options like electroconvulsive therapy (ECT) are also available. [10] During ETC, a small and weak electric current is passed through the patient's brain under general anesthesia. This makes changes in the brain's biochemistry, leading to alleviation of symptoms of the disease, in this case depression. It is an effective and treatment option for people suffering from severe depression. [11]

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