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The Link Between Depression and Pain

Physical pain is a common, but often ignored, symptom of depression. A study published in the journal Psychosomatic Medicine found that two-thirds of people starting treatment for depression also reported being in physical pain. The most commonly cited symptoms were frequent headaches, back pain, joint pain, and abdominal pain.

What's the connection between pain and depression? Research shows that the two share common chemical pathways. The brain chemicals serotonin and norepinephrine are known to play key roles in depression. Now researchers believe these neurotransmitters also mediate pain.

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Questions and Answers About Winter Depression

If your mood gets worse as the weather gets chillier and the days get shorter, you may have "winter depression." Here, questions to ask your doctor if winter is the saddest season for you.

Read the Questions and Answers About Winter Depression article > >

The good news? In the study, people who responded well to treatment for depression also reported less pain as they got better.

WebMD Medical Reference

Reviewed by Joseph Goldberg, MD on July 05, 2012

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