Why do we feel bad when we are sick - A psychological perspective

By M.Farouk Radwan, MSc.

The mind and body connection

It's totally understood that sickness can result in bad emotions. After all the feeling that you can't do your normal activities or the feeling that you are going to miss something can make any person feel bad.

However apart from that logical dimension there are more factors that contribute to our bad mood when we get sick. I am pretty sure you read somewhere before that the mind and body and strongly connected. Even if you haven't seen that anywhere it sill makes a lot of sense that both the mind and the body affect each other greatly.

I have said earlier in some of my articles that many of the emotions we experience are actually nothing more than physical changes in our body that got translated by the brain into certain emotions. In other words any changes that happen to your body can get reflected into your emotions right away.

Why do we feel bad when we are sick

When you feel sick you feel weak as a result of the changes that happen to your body. This weakness doesn't just affect your ability to do physical work but it also makes you feel psychologically weak. And because the state of your body greatly affects your psychological state this physical weakness can result in bad moods.

Now you might ask yourself why you sometimes feel really bad when you get sick while in other times you don't feel that bad when you get a similar sickness. This depends greatly on your current happiness levels.

Just like a small problem can ruin your mood if you were already having a bad day a sickness is very likely to make you feel bad if you weren't already happy.

In fact all the environmental conditions that we go through actually changes how we feel about ourselves and not just sickness. I am pretty sure you noticed that you are more likely to feel scared or anxious when its dark or cold. See The connection between cold weather and fear.

Better health means a better mood

How did you feel the last time you had a really good night sleep?
Probably you realized that you are feeling much better than usual. And if you looked deeper then probably you noticed that you got less worried and anxious on that day.

Just like sickness makes us feel bad a good health makes us feel good. People who are addicted to exercising do it for so many reasons but certainly one of those reasons are the good feelings they get as a result of being in a good health.

The good health people experience when they follow a healthy life style gets reflected in their moods and as a result they live happier lives.

So what's the takeaway here?
You need to make sure that you are taking proper care of your body in order to live a good life. Yes there are so many factors that affect a person's mood and one factor alone won't make dramatic changes but still any slight improvement to the overall mood can help.

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