I want to share a large study (over 50,000 people) that highlights the link between anxiety and depression and somatic symptoms in the body. I treat a lot of unexplained physical symptoms that are purely the physical manifestation of anxiety and depression showing up in the body. Here’s a recap of some of the information from this study.
Introduction: Somatic symptoms are frequent among people in the community, and more than 75% of respondents in a community study reported at least one subjective somatic complaint during the past 30 days. More than 50% reported tiredness, 42% headache, 35% low back pain, and 33% pain in the arms and shoulder. Gastrointestinal symptoms like nausea, bloating, diarrhea, and constipation were reported by nearly 50% and asthenia and fatigue in about 25% of the general population.
Results: Women reported more somatic symptoms than men (mean number of symptoms women/men: 3.8/2.9). There was a strong association between anxiety, depression, and functional somatic symptoms. The association was equally strong for anxiety and depression.
Conclusion: There was a statistically significant relationship between anxiety, depression, and functional somatic symptoms, independent of age and gender.