Men who are diagnosed with anxiety or depression in their teens have a 20% higher risk of having a heart attack than those who weren’t diagnosed, a study found.
A study presented at the European Society of Cardiology monitored the health of over 238,000 men born between 1952 and 1954, starting at ages 18 and 19, and found the risk for heart attacks increased.
The study also mentions that some of the reasons for this were partly due to inability to cope with stress and lower physical fitness for the diagnosed teens, which may continue into adulthood.
“If a healthy lifestyle is encouraged as early as possible in childhood and adolescence it is more likely to persist into adulthood and improve long-term health,” said lead author Cecilia Bergh.
The lower levels of physical health among teens diagnosed with mental illness may also be related to the mental illness, as the study shows that physical activity can help people cope with stress.