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Mental Health is as Important
as Physical Health

By Mikkie Mills

Mental health is of critical importance in society today given the daily stresses inflicted upon the busy lives of all. According to the National Alliance on Mental Illness, mental health is just as important as physical health, and they state that up to 20 percent of the population suffer from mental health issues each year.

Types of Mental Problems and Disorders

Mental health issues and disorders are not a sign of weakness, and they should be treated as quickly as possible. You might suffer from any number of different types of problems and disorders, and each person will have a unique reaction and experience to their diagnosis. One thing that everyone will have in common is that they will struggle with their thoughts, mood or feelings. The types of mental health problems and disorders are extensive with the most common being clinical depression, anxiety, bipolar, dementia, attention deficit, hyperactivity, schizophrenia, obsessive-compulsive, autism and post-traumatic stress.

Reasons People Have Poor Mental Health

You or a loved one might struggle with mental health for a wide variety of reasons. Some people will inherit mental health disorders. If a close blood relative has a disorder, it could increase the chance of you passing it along to your children. It is possible that a disorder may stay dormant until it becomes triggered. Another reason is due to environmental factors in the womb, such as drugs and alcohol, inflammation issues and toxins. It is also related to the chemistry in your brain that can lead to depression. Poor mental health can also be associated with financial difficulties, death of a loved one, drugs and alcohol abuse, brain damage, diabetes, military experience, childhood abuse, unhealthy relationships and a traumatic event.

Challenges with Treating Mental Health

One of the biggest challenges with treating mental health is the stigma associated with mental health issues and disorders. People are often too afraid to get a diagnosis for fear of social backlash. Another challenge is that many people do not realize they have a problem and loved ones do not know the symptoms for which to look out. Given that so many people have stigmatized mental health, it can become difficult to receive treatment with health insurance. Out-of-pocket expenses deter many people from pursuing therapy or to take the medication they require for an improved quality of life.

Results If Left Untreated

Untreated mental health issues can lead to even more dangerous and serious circumstances. If you struggle with mental health problems, this can lead drug and alcohol abuse, relationship issues, conflicts with family members, isolation, financial and legal concerns, inability to go to work or school, homelessness or poverty, suicide, homicide, self-harm, deteriorated immune system and heart disease. It is important that people are educated and aware of the signs of mental illness.

Treatment and Prevention

The best way to treat mental illness and to prevent additional issues from developing is to speak with medical professionals regularly. It is also a good idea to create a trusted circle of family and friends to help keep an eye out for signs. You should eat right, exercise and get enough sleep. Some people are able to work through their mental health problems by speaking with a psychologist or a psychiatrist; however, other people will require medication and supervision. Meditation and mindfulness are also becoming highly recommended by medical professionals as a way to take care of your mental health on a daily basis to help minimize stress and anxiety. If anyone ever has thoughts of suicide, they should seek help immediately.

Good mental health is essential to a good quality of life. If you ever have any signs of poor mental health, seek help and take care of yourself first and foremost. Everything else can wait.

About Mikkie Mills: “I’m a Chicago native who loves to share her expertise about personal development and growth. When I’m not writing, I’m chasing the little ones around or rock climbing at the local climbing gym.” More articles by Mikkie.

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