People with mental illness often have problems with their physical health as well. This could be due to the nature of their illness, the medication, or the lifestyle changes brought about by their ill-health.
The effects of mental illness on a person's physical health could range from body aches and weight gain, to hypertension or diabetes – which can occur as a result of taking medication for years, particularly among people with severe mental illness. People with psychiatric disorders such as substance abuse, could be affected with several health problems in the long run.
However, many of these problems, if addressed early enough, can be managed to help the individual lead a functional life. Some side effects can be controlled by changing the dose of medication, and some can be avoided entirely with a change of prescription.
If you are a person with a mental illness, or a caregiver to one, watch out for these signs so that you can seek help or implement lifestyle changes immediately.