This week has been Mental Health Awareness week. In this issue of Omega Health we will be talking about the subject which has become more apparent recently.
Mental health is such a sensitive topic that has been more highlighted in the media lately, sadly this has been impacted by the death of young people who have struggled to cope and receive the help they needed with their own mental health. Within general society there are people who are fighting their own battles of mental health and sometimes this can be in silence. There are also people in society who are supporting family members and loved ones through mental health and supporting them to cope with the issues they are facing on a daily basis.
Mental health can be a difficult topic to talk about, individuals who are suffering may not want to talk about their worries, however it is important to understand that there is ALWAYS someone you can talk to and there is always help that can be found.
Mental health can take many different forms, ranging from anxiety, depression and psychosis. Mental health isn’t always visible to the naked eye and many people try to mask their illness. It is reported that 1 in 6 people are known to experience a common mental health problem in any given week, with at least 1 in 4 of us experiencing mental health issue each year. Statistics say 1 in 4 people will experience a mental health difficult at some point during their life.
Each condition has its own side affects, these side affects will contribute to how a person is feeling, the individual may not show their feelings and may decide to keep them bottled up inside, contributing to the extreme feeling of loneliness. These feelings can include the feeling of sadness, being emotional, crying, isolating yourself, loss of interest in activities, feeling angry and reckless behaviour, however these are just some of the typical behaviours that can be noticed. You may not always be able to see the suffering that someone is going through, always check on your family and friends and be kind, you don’t know the battle that someone may be fighting.
Examples of mental health problems
Generalised anxiety disorder (GAD)
Anxiety is a normal emotion that we all experience, such as in the run up to exams or a job interview. But when anxiety becomes much more severe this feeling can take over and begin to interfere with everyday life.
An eating disorder is when a person’s eating habits and relationship with food becomes difficult. Eating problems can disrupt how a person eats food and absorbs nutrients, which affects physical health, but can also be detrimental both emotionally and socially.
Bipolar disorder is a mental health condition that affects a person’s mood, energy and ability to function.
We all experience low mood sometimes – it is a normal part of life especially after a loss or bereavement. Depression in the medical sense however can leave people feeling severely sad, empty, hopeless or guilty for weeks, months or even years.
Attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) is a developmental disorder that makes an individual more likely to have short attention spans, be impulsive and hyperactive.
Autism spectrum disorder
Autism spectrum disorder (ASD) is a lifelong developmental disorder characterised by difficulty with social interaction and communication, and a narrow set of interests and repetitive behaviours.
Schizophrenia is a severe mental illness, which disrupts how someone thinks. It also affects their understanding and perception of the world around them, including what they see or hear.
Obsessive compulsive disorder (OCD)
All of us obsess about things from time to time –whether we left the iron on, or ifwe shut the door –but obsessive compulsive disorder (OCD) is much more serious.
Post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD)
Post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) is a type of anxiety disorder triggered by traumatic events in a person’s life such as real or threatened death, severe injury or sexual assault.
Borderline personality disorder (BPD), also known as emotionally unstable personality disorder (EUPD), is the most commonly recognised personality disorder. It is characterised by a pattern of emotional instability and unstable relationships with other people.
The offline version of this issue of Omega Health is available here
We also covered this issue in the May 2015 issue of spotlight on.