Everyone has mental health which is made up of our beliefs, thoughts, feelings, and behaviors. It includes our emotional, psychological, and social well-being. It affects how we think, feel, and act. It also helps determine how we handle stress, relate to others, and make healthy choices.
What are mental health disorders?
Although mental health differs from person to person, a disorder can be defined as an issue when is affects one’s ability to regulate their emotions, thoughts, or actions. There is a wide range of mental health issues. Some are moderate and have little influence on quality of life, while others are more serious. Below is a list of some of the more common conditions:
We can all suffer from mental health challenges, but developing our wellbeing, resilience, and seeking help early can help prevent challenges becoming serious.
What causes mental health problems?
Challenges or problems with your mental health can arise from psychological, biological, and social issues, as well as life events. There is no single cause for mental illness and several factors can contribute to the risk.
Can your mental health change over time?
Yes. It is important to remember that a person’s mental health can change over time, depending on many factors.
How do I know if I’m having mental health problems?
If your beliefs, thoughts, feelings or behaviors have a significant impact on your ability to function in what might be considered a normal or ordinary way, it would be important to seek help.
Is mental health important?
Mental health is important. Not taking care of your mental health can negatively impact your everyday life. Your physical health and wellbeing are important and keeping them healthy will have a positive impact on your relationships, mood, thinking, behaviors, and physical health.
Are there any warning signs of mental illness?
Yes, there are many different signs and symptoms of mental health disorders that will vary depending on the type of conditions. Some of the general symptoms are below:
In adults: • Confused thinking or problems concentrating • Long-lasting sadness or irritability • Extreme mood changes • Excessive fear, worrying or anxiety • Avoiding friends and family • Dramatic changes in eating or sleeping habits • Feeling tired and low energy • Strong feelings of anger • Delusions or hallucinations (seeing or hearing things that are not really there) • Unable to carry out daily activities or handle daily problems and stress • Thought of suicide • Denial of obvious problems • Many physical problems without obvious causes (such as headaches, stomach aches, vague and ongoing “aches and pains”) • Abuse of drugs and/or alcohol • A very strong fear of weight gain or concern with appearance
In younger children: • Changes in school performance • Excessive worrying or anxiety • Hyperactive behavior (constant activity, unable to concentrate, fidgeting, wandering, talking too much) • Frequent nightmares • Persistent disobedience and/or aggressive behavior • Frequent temper tantrums
What should I do if I am worried about a friend or relative?
This may depend on your relationship with them and the severity of your concern. Gently encouraging someone to seek appropriate support would be helpful to start with. In case of an emergency, call 911.
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