Chronic pain more common in partners of depressed individuals

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As investigators look closer into the link between chronic pain and depression, they have discovered that not only does one work against the other when they are present in our bodies, but individuals who are in partnerships or relationships with a person who is depressed will experience chronic pain as a result. While other factors play into the equation such as environments, genetics and lifestyle habits, the study referenced in the article shows how relationships affect these conditions as well.

Key Takeaways:

  • A recent study found that chronic pain has a heritability of 30 percent.
  • For instance, one study estimated the heritability of major depressive disorder to be 37 percent.
  • The team found that partners of people with depression were more likely to experience chronic pain, but a person’s genetic make-up also played its part.

“Although a genetic component to both conditions seems clear, the way in which genes conspire to create chronic pain and depression is not understood. To further muddy the waters, environmental factors, such as lifestyle and sleep quality, are also known to play their part.”