(Representational Image) Xavier Hames from Perth, developed diabetes at 22 months, and had been on daily insulin injections till Wednesday, when a team of doctors at the Princess Margaret Hospital for Children (PMH) fixed the wearable insulin pump to his body.Allen Hazen/Flickr

It seems Diabetes and depression is not a good combination.

Diabetic patients who suffer from depression are more likely to die early, says a new study.

The study included 458 people with type 1 diabetes. With the help of the Beck Depression Inventory, researchers measured depressive symptoms among the participants. People who received 16 or more points in the 32 point scale were diagnosed with clinical depression. Results showed a direct link between depression, diabetes and premature mortality.

"For every one-point increase on the scale, participants showed a 4 percent increase in risk for mortality, even after controlling for other relevant factors, such as age, gender, smoking, cholesterol levels and high blood pressure," lead author of the study Cassie Fickley, said in a news release. "That's a significant increase and is something we'll need to explore more to determine if treating depression would translate into lower mortality in people with type 1 diabetes."

These findings presented at the American Diabetes Association's 74th Scientific Sessions in San Francisco supports a study released in May this year. Researchers from the University of California, Los Angeles looked at 3,341 diabetic patients and found 49 percent increased risk of early death associated with depression in diabetic patients.

Another research released early this month in Diabetes Care looked at 1,227 people and found higher markers of inflammation in patients who had both depression and diabetes compared to people only suffering from diabetes.

Though the actual causes behind this link is not fully known, according to experts, management of diabetes can sometimes be stressful and make one depressed. There exists another theory that states that depression increases risk of diabetes and links the unhealthy lifestyle associated with depression to the development of the chronic disease.

Type 1 diabetes is a condition, where pancreatic cells that produce hormone insulin and regulates blood sugar in the body, get destroyed by immune system of the body. It requires daily insulin injections to survive. In Type 2 diabetes, the body develops resistance to insulin. If left untreated or undiagnosed, diabetes can increase the risk of cardiovascular diseases (strokes, heart attack), cause damages to the kidney, eye, nerve, foot, and lead to cancer.

Depression can be treated either with the help of psychotherapy or through antidepressants.

How to find out whether you are suffering from depression - some symptoms:

  • Feeling sad, anxious
  • Feeling irritated, restless or hopeless
  • Frequent headaches or other types of pains
  • Loss of interest in eating or tendency to eat more
  • Fatigue
  • Sleep problems
  • Suicidal thoughts