“Mental health disorders,” “Psychological disorders” or “Psychiatric disorders.” Any of those names are acceptable as they all mean conditions that affect how humans think and feel.
According to the National Alliance on Mental Illness (NAMI) 1 in 5 Americans lives with a mental illness. Can you name 5 people that you know right now? What about 10? The more I ask, the more likely you are to realize not only do you know one person who has or is struggling with a mental illness, but that maybe you know more!
Mental health disorders are one of the factors that contribute largely to how humans live their daily lives, especially if it is un- or misdiagnosed. It can be influenced by environment, substances, lifestyle, and genetics.
5 COMMON MENTAL HEALTH DISORDER
As opposed to what many think, a mental health disorder is no respecter of age, gender, or ethnicity, and just like medical conditions, it can range from mild to severe. Its early stages might not be evident as the individual suffering from it might see it as normal mood swings.
However, as it nears the severe stage, the individual might experience depression or other mood changes. According to the Centers for disease control and prevention, over 50% of the world population suffers from one psychological disorder or another.
It is one of the most prevalent conditions around the world. Bipolar disorder is most common in the United States with over 2.6% Americans suffering from its symptoms. The condition is associated with mood swings ranging from manic highs to depressive lows.
During manic highs, individuals suffering from this condition will be active and might not find it necessary to sleep. In the episodes of depressive lows, the individual will lose motivation to do anything and will most definitely experience a loss of energy.
Although the sole cause of bipolar disorder is unknown, environment, genetics, and altered brain structure contribute largely to its existence. This condition can be lifelong, and treatments such as medication and psychotherapy can be of great help.
We all have our everyday fears; when we are stuck in traffic and deadlines are due at work, we fear getting probed by the boss about why we are not able to keep up with the workload. But an anxiety disorder causes significantly more fear than what one might usually experience.
This condition will make anyone suffering from it get extremely worried about every little thing they think about. It affects about 3% of Americans and interferes with their ability to have a productive day.
Effective treatments for anxiety disorder range from psychotherapy to medication in individuals experiencing clinically significant impairment.
MAJOR DEPRESSIVE DISORDER
Commonly referred to as clinical depression, it is another type of mood disorder that is frequently associated with suicidal thoughts. Most often it lasts for months and reduces productiveness.
Clinical depression may cause an individual to become upset and violent towards themselves. It is one of the prevalent conditions alongside bipolar disorder, and it has been estimated to affect about 7% of Americans.
While the condition can last a few months, or longer if untreated, it is necessary to seek the help of a medical professional when dealing with suicidal thoughts or other thoughts of self-harm. Medication such as antidepressants, psychotherapy, and a strong support system can go a long way in improving the condition.
If you or someone you know are dealing with thoughts of suicide here are several resources available to be used in conjunction with a qualified medical professional or emergency services, such as 911, if necessary:
National Suicide Prevention Lifeline: Website: https://suicidepreventionlifeline.org/
24/7 Free & Confidential Phone: 1-800-273-8255
This condition might seem normal at the mild stage, particularly for people who eat a lot and those that have very little appetite for food, but as it enters the severe stage, it becomes dangerous.
There are different types of eating disorders; they include an obsession for food, body shape, and body weight.
Eating disorders include Anorexia nervosa, Bulimia nervosa, Binge eating disorder, rumination disorder, Restrictive food intake disorder, and Pica – pica is a rare condition that involves individuals craving substances that are not food items. This condition might require the help of a medical professional as it could lead to death when left untreated due to ingestion of toxic substances.
POST-TRAUMATIC STRESS DISORDER (PTSD)
PTSD is a type of psychological disorder that is prompted by traumatic events. Failure to recover after experiencing natural disasters, war, and sexual molestation can trigger the condition.
Symptoms of this condition include frequent nightmares, flashbacks, startle response, lack of concentration, and avoiding the scenes where the event played out. PTSD might last for a few months or a few years and can be managed with medication and psychotherapy.
Mental health disorders can cause an individual to derail from their normal way of life and go into depression, affecting their lifestyle in general. However, with medication, under the strict supervision of a medical professional and psychotherapy, most individuals can recover and lead healthy, productive lives.