Mentally ill people'more likely to have health problems'

People who suffer from some form of mental disorder are more likely to develop long-term illnesses, one sector commentator has claimed.

In news that may be of interest to those seeking Alzheimer's care, Alison Kerry, spokesperson for the British charity Mind, said such individuals were more prone to suffer from cancer or heart disease in the future.

She added that along with weight gain, some anti-depressants could heighten the risk of developing certain illnesses.

Mentally ill people 'more likely to have health problems'

Meanwhile, those taking anti-psychotic medication could find that the drugs have an effect on their physical health as well, although this may not initially be noticed.

"If you have mental health problems, you are much more likely to develop things like diabetes, cancer and heart disease and one of these things may be being overlooked by doctors," Ms Kerry added.

According to the UK Office for National Statistics' 2006 figures on mental health, one in six adults have had a neurotic disorder.

The most common mental disorders were mixed anxiety and depression which effect seven per cent of men and 11 per cent of women, the research also revealed.

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