UDOH Report Links Asthma and Depression | KUER 90.1

UDOH Report Links Asthma and Depression

May 25, 2016

A new report from the Utah Department of Health shows that Utahns with asthma also have higher rates of depression.

Asthma and depression have been linked before, but the new report from the Utah Department of Health confirms that the connection is prevalent in the Beehive State.

“Mental health and asthma are interconnected and having both can worsen health more than just having one condition alone,” says Holly Uphold, an epidemiologist with the Utah Health Department. She says more than a third of asthma patients also suffer from some level of depression.

According to the report, 44% of adolescents who experienced an asthma attack in the past year also reported feeling depressed or sad most of the time. Children and adults who missed work or school because of asthma were also more likely to have depression.

Uphold says those murky, poor air quality days along the Wasatch Front can trigger asthma attacks, and they’re not great for seasonal depression either.

“The air quality impacts your asthma, and then that seasonal depression can impact depression, so you have this storm of all these factors that can make things really bad for someone who has asthma and depression,” she says.

Uphold says it’s important for asthma patients to know their triggers, and set up a treatment plan with their physician.