If you are having difficulties concentrating, reduced attention span, and your memory is getting worse, then growth hormone deficiency (GHD) might be the reason.
Patients with GHD often experience problems with memory and attention as well as other signs of cognitive impairment when compared with healthy people of the same age. The negative impact of low HGH on mood and motivation can additionally reduce the overall mental and cognitive performance in GHD patients.
Furthermore, people with low GH are at a higher risk of mental problems such as anxiety and depression. For example, atypical depression is quite common amongst patients with adult-onset GHD. The symptoms include extreme sleepiness, fatigue, mood swings, high sensitivity, and hyper reactiveness to environmental stressors.
Mental and cognitive problems can seriously reduce your quality of life. Apart from GHD, these symptoms can be caused by traumatic events, medications, substance abuse, and chronic degenerative conditions.
How HGH affects your mental health
HGH affects your mental health via different hormonal receptors in the brain. There are GH receptors in the hippocampus that might play a role in memory and cognitive function.
Adults with GHD experience various cognitive problems, ranging from reduced attention span and lower memory performance to atypical depression. If GHD is combined with other pituitary hormone deficiencies it can also lead to increased levels of anxiety, severe depression, and even social isolation.
Patients with different types of anxiety such as Generalized Anxiety Disorder (GAD) and Social Anxiety Disorder (SAD) have significantly lower peaks in HGH release. When compared to healthy controls, these patients have a blunted response to different GH stimulation tests.
How to treat depression and anxiety due to GHD
GH replacement is the treatment of choice for GHD. Besides, it is studied extensively for its effects on the human brain, mood, cognition, and quality of life. Preliminary evidence suggests that HGH therapy can alter the brain’s morphology and connectivity and reduce fatigue, sleep disturbances, and anxiety.
HGH therapy led to significant improvements in multiple health aspects in 34 GHD adults. Two of those aspects included psychological health and cognition. The patients experienced improved body and self-image as well as fewer problems with memory and concentration.
According to another trial in GHD patients, it takes 6 months of HGH therapy to achieve improvement in the scores of depression, attention, and cognition. The atypical depression observed in patients with adult-onset GHD can also be successfully managed during the first 4 months of HGH therapy.
The impact of GHD on central nervous activity, vigilance, and tiredness can also lead to poor sleep and further worsen symptoms like depression and anxiety.
More about sleep problems and fatigue