Mental health is a state of emotional, psychological, and social wellbeing of a person. Mental health is the foundation for emotions, thinking, communication, learning, resilience, and self-esteem. It is therefore important in our day-to-day life especially when it comes to relationship, and improvement of community and society.
Mental illnesses are health conditions involving the changes in emotion, thinking or behaviour or a combination of these things. The illness is associated with distress or problems related to functioning in a social, work or family space.
Everyone has some level of risk in developing a mental health disorder, no matter their age, sex, income, or ethnicity. Studies conducted in the U.S and most developed economies by researchers has confirmed mental disorder as one of the leading causes of disability among its population. The others cause of mental disability are social and financial circumstances, biological factors, and lifestyle choices that causes a hindrance to a person sound mental health. In addition, most people with mental health disorder have other contributing conditions at any given time.
It is important to note that good mental health depends on a delicate balance of factors and other elements of life which the world at large do conspire towards enhancing mental disorder in people. The following factors may contribute to mental health disruptions these are:
- Continuous social and economic pressure, that comes with having limited financial means or belonging to a marginalized or persecuted ethnic group will increase the risk of developing mental health disorders.
- Biological factors that arise from genetic family history can increase the likelihood of developing mental disorder for instance it’s been found people with a certain gene variant are susceptible to developing mental disorder in their lifetime.
The most common types of mental illness are anxiety disorders, mood disorders and schizophrenia disorders.
The anxiety disorders cause people to suffer from severe fear or anxiety, which accompanies certain objects or situations. As defensive mechanism most people with suffering from anxiety disorder will try to avoid exposure to triggers that will raise their anxiety. Example of anxiety disorder are generalized anxiety disorder (GAD), Panic disorders, Phobias, Obsessive-compulsive disorder (OCD) and Post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD).
The mood disorders are usually associated with people exhibiting affective disorders or depressive disorders. These condition conditions have significant changes in mood of the patient, most noticeable are involves mania, which is a moment of high energy and elation, or depression. Examples of mood disorders include major depression, bipolar disorder, and seasonal affective disorder (SAD).
Schizophrenia disorders is a mental health that is associated with a single disorder or a group of related illnesses, in other words it is a highly complex condition. The most basic signs of individual suffering from this disorder are thoughts that appear fragmented, and also finding it hard to process information.
There are no available physical test or scan that reliably can indicates whether a person has developed a mental illness. But the following are possible signs of a mental health disorder:
- withdrawing from friends, family, and colleagues
- avoiding activities that they would normally enjoy
- sleeping too much or too little
- eating too much or too little
- feeling hopeless
- having consistently low energy
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