What is mental health? Mental health disorders & treatment

What is mental health? Mental health disorders & treatment

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What Is Mental Health?

Emotional, psychological, and social well-being are all components of what constitutes our mental health. It has an effect on how we think, feels, and behave as a result. It also plays a role in determining how we respond to stressful situations, interact with other people, and make decisions. It is essential to take care of one’s mental health throughout one’s entire life, beginning in childhood and continuing through adulthood.

If you struggle with your mental health throughout your lifetime, it is possible that it will have an effect on how you think, how you feel, and how you behave. Problems with mental health can be caused by a variety of circumstances, including the following:

Biological variables, such as genes or the chemical composition of the brain

Experiences in one’s life, such as a traumatic event or abuse

A history of psychological distress running through the family

Problems with one’s mental health are extremely common, but there is treatment available. It is possible for people who struggle with their mental health to get better, and a large percentage of them do recover fully.

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Risk factors for mental health conditions

No one, regardless of their age, gender, socioeconomic standing, or ethnicity, is immune to the possibility of having a mental illness at some point in their lives.

One of the top causes of death in the United States and much of the rest of the developed world is mental diseases.

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A person’s mental health can be influenced by a variety of factors, including their social and financial situations, biological characteristics, and lifestyle choices.

People who are diagnosed with a mental health illness are likely to be dealing with more than one condition at the same time.

It is essential to keep in mind that maintaining a healthy mental state is dependent on striking a delicate balance between a number of factors and that a number of aspects of both daily life and the wider world can operate in concert to contribute to diseases.

The following are some elements that may lead to disturbances in mental health.

Continuous social and economic pressure

There is a correlation between having little financial means and an increased chance of developing mental health illnesses. Additionally, belonging to an ethnic minority that is oppressed or persecuted also increases this risk.

a research is done in 2015

A survey conducted by a Trusted Source in Iran with the participation of 903 households revealed that there are multiple socioeconomic factors that contribute to mental health disorders. These factors include living in poverty and being located on the outskirts of a large city.

The researchers also provided an explanation for the disparity between the modifiable factors, which are subject to change over the course of time, and the nonmodifiable factors, which are characteristics that cannot be altered in any way, regarding the availability and quality of mental health treatment for particular populations.

The following are examples of modifiable risk factors for mental health disorders:

socioeconomic factors, such as the availability of jobs in the region, a person’s level of social activity, and the type of work they do, are taken into consideration.

the standard of education and housing

The following are examples of nonmodifiable factors:

gender \sage \sethnicity

According to the findings of the study, gender can function both as a modifiable and nonmodifiable component. According to the findings of the study, the likelihood of having a poor mental health status was multiplied by 3.96 when the individual was a female.

According to this research, participants with a “poor economic standing” had the highest prevalence of mental health disorders.

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Biological factors

According to the National Institute of Mental Health (NIMH), a person’s genetic family history can raise the possibility of developing mental health issues since particular genes and gene variants place a person at a higher risk for developing these conditions.

Nevertheless, the development of these ailments is also influenced by a great number of other factors.

Although having a gene that is linked to a mental health illness, such as schizophrenia or depression, does increase the risk of developing that condition, it is not a certainty. People who do not have a genetic predisposition or a family history of mental disease are still at risk for developing mental health problems.

It is possible for life-altering physical health issues, such as cancer, diabetes, or chronic pain, to be the underlying cause of mental health diseases like stress, sadness, and anxiety that manifest themselves in an individual.

Common mental health disorders

The following is a list of the most frequent types of mental illnesses:

  • anxiety disorders
  • mood disorders
  • schizophrenia disorders

Anxiety disorders

Anxiety disorders are said to be the most prevalent kind of mental illness in the United States, as reported by the Anxiety and Depression Association of America.

People who suffer from these illnesses experience intense fear or anxiety that is triggered by particular triggers, such as things or circumstances. The vast majority of persons who suffer from anxiety disorders will make every effort to limit their contact with whatever it is that sets off their symptoms.

The following are some examples of anxiety disorders:

Disorder of anxiety that is generalised (GAD)

Generalized Anxiety Disorder is defined by the American Psychiatric Association as excessive concern that interferes with daily life.

People may also have bodily symptoms, including those listed here.

Unease, weariness, and muscle tension all contributed to disrupted sleep.

People who suffer from GAD may not necessarily require a specific trigger in order to experience an episode of anxious symptoms.

They may suffer overwhelming anxiety when confronted with everyday scenarios that do not provide a direct threat, such as maintaining appointments or doing housework, but they may also find relief when these situations are avoided. A person who suffers from GAD may at times have feelings of worry for no apparent reason.

Panic disorders

People who suffer from panic disorder are more likely to have panic attacks, which are episodes of sudden, overpowering fear or a feeling that an impending catastrophe or death is near.


There are numerous kinds of phobias, including the following:

Phobias that are straightforward can be characterised by an irrational and excessive dread of particular things, situations, or creatures. One such example might be a phobia of spiders. Find out more about common fears by reading this.

The fear of being judged or evaluated by other people is at the root of social phobia, which is sometimes referred to as social anxiety. People who suffer from social phobia frequently limit the amount of time they spend in social settings. Read on for further information.

Agoraphobia is a term that describes a fear of situations in which it may be impossible to escape, such as when one is trapped in an elevator or on a moving train. The dread of being exposed to natural elements is a common misunderstanding regarding this phobia. You can learn everything you need to know about agoraphobia by reading this.

Phobias are extremely private conditions, and medical professionals are unable to diagnose every variety. There could be thousands of different types of phobias, and what one person finds peculiar could be a debilitating issue that controls their lives on a daily basis for someone else.

Obsessive-compulsive disorder (OCD)

Obsessive-compulsive disorder patients struggle with both obsessions and compulsions. In other words, individuals are plagued by continuous stressful thoughts and a great compulsion to engage in ritualistic behaviours, such as washing their hands repeatedly.

The condition is known as post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD)

After experiencing or witnessing an event that is extremely stressful or traumatic, a person may develop post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD).

During this kind of incident, the person believes that their own life or the lives of other people are in risk. They might have feelings of panic or helplessness as a result of the situation they are in.

These traumatic experiences and feelings of anxiety may then contribute to post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD).

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Mood disorders

A person’s state of mind can also be affected by conditions known as affective disorders and depressive illnesses.

People who have these diseases have major shifts in their mood, which typically involve either mania, which is characterised by extreme euphoria and high levels of energy, or depression. The following are some examples of mood disorders:

Major depression is characterised by a persistently depressed mood as well as a loss of interest in activities and occasions that the depressed individual had previously taken pleasure in. They are prone to experiencing extended bouts of grief as well as intense feelings of melancholy.

Bipolar disorder: A person who suffers from a mental illness known as bipolar disorder is characterised by extraordinary shifts in their mood, levels of energy, levels of activity, and capacity to carry on with their regular life. Manic phases are characterised by extremely elevated moods, whilst depressed phases are characterised by significantly lower moods.

The seasonal affective disorder also referred to as SAD: This sort of significant depression is caused by the reduced amount of daylight that occurs during the fall, winter, and early spring months (referenced source). It is particularly prevalent in nations that are latitudes away from the equator. Read on for more information regarding SAD.

Schizophrenia disorders

Authorities in the field of mental health are still debating whether schizophrenia is a single illness or a collection of conditions that are related to one another. This is a very complicated medical condition.

The normal age range for the onset of symptoms of schizophrenia is between the ages of 16 and 30.

According to the NIMH, this is a Trusted Source. The individual in question will have ideas that are disjointed and may also have difficulty processing the information they are given.

Both positive and negative symptoms are associated with schizophrenia. Positive symptoms can include things like hallucinations, thinking disorders, and delusions. Withdrawal, a loss of motivation, and an inappropriate or unflattering mood are all examples of negative symptoms.

Early signs

There is no medical examination or scan that can conclusively determine whether or not a person has developed a mental disease. On the other hand, people should be on the lookout for the following, as these could be indications of a mental health disorder:

avoiding activities that they would normally enjoy sleeping too much or too little eating too much or too little feeling hopeless and isolating themselves from friends, family, and coworkers avoiding activities that they would normally enjoy

having low energy levels on a consistent basis and utilising mood-

Those who are under the influence of substances, such as alcohol and nicotine, are more likely to express unpleasant feelings.

being unable to carry out regular activities because of confusion, such as going to work or making a meal

experiencing delusions, hearing voices, having persistent thoughts or memories that come back to them on a frequent basis, having thoughts of causing bodily harm to themselves or others, and hearing voices.


There are a variety of approaches to treating issues related to mental health. Treatment is very individualised, and what is effective for one individual might not be effective for another.

When combined with other approaches or treatments, certain tactics or procedures yield better results. At various points in their lives, a person who lives with a chronic mental condition may decide to go in a variety of different directions.

The individual need close collaboration with a physician who is able to assist them in determining their requirements and offer them with treatment that is appropriate for them.

Treatments may include the following:

Psychotherapy, or talking therapies

A psychological strategy is utilised in the treatment of mental illness within the context of this sort of treatment. Examples of this type of therapy include cognitive behavioural therapy, exposure therapy, and dialectical behaviour therapy.

This form of treatment is typically administered by psychiatrists, psychologists, psychotherapists, and even some primary care physicians on occasion.

It can help patients understand the cause of their mental illness and begin to work on more healthy thought patterns that support day-to-day functioning and lower the likelihood of being isolated and engaging in self-injurious behaviours.


Certain individuals are advised by their doctors to take certain medications, such as antidepressants, antipsychotics, and anxiolytics.

Despite the fact that medicines cannot treat or cure mental diseases, certain medications can alleviate symptoms and make it easier for a person to resume normal social interactions and daily routines while they continue to focus on improving their mental health.

Some of these medications accomplish their intended effects by facilitating an increase in the number of brain chemicals that are taken up by the body, particularly serotonin. The overall levels of these substances can be increased by other medications, or their degradation or elimination can be prevented altogether.


In order to encourage wellness, a person who is struggling with issues related to their mental health will typically need to make adjustments to their way of life.

Reducing the amount of alcohol consumed, increasing the amount of sleep one gets, and eating a diet that is balanced and healthy are all examples of such modifications. People may need to take time off from their jobs or work through problems in their personal relationships in order to repair the damage to their mental health that is being caused.

Relaxation practises, such as deep breathing, meditation, and mindfulness can be beneficial for certain people who suffer from disorders such as anxiety or depression.

It is also crucial to recover from mental illness to have a support network, which can be in the form of self-help groups, close friends and family, or any combination of these.

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