A person may well experience a high level of stress when in a troubled marriage or going through a divorce. That same person may also experience a high level of stress after a divorce.
The impact of significant, especially prolonged, stress on the body has been well-documented. Understanding how a divorce may contribute to a person’s health may help raise awareness of how to create better habits for a healthier life.
Studies document the correlation between divorce and health
Numerous medical studies have examined the connection between declining health and divorce. One set of research conducted at Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health found that divorced persons may experience a greater lack of mobility than their married counterparts. The same research found divorce may increase the chance of developing a chronic health condition like diabetes.
Research findings published in the Annals of Behavioral Medicine documented the increased likelihood of smoking and reduced physical activity of divorced persons to identify that divorced spouses in the study had a 46% greater chance of death than did the married study participants.
Mental health and divorce
The Journal of Applied Social Psychology indicated that people with prior episodes of depression experience an increased risk of relapse during or after a divorce.
Stress and health
Stress may well be the culprit at the core of many physical and mental health issues divorcing spouses face. That said, a highly stressful marriage in which a person’s needs are not met and the environment is fraught with conflict may also contribute to the development of these health problems.