It is normal to feel things in life. Happy, sad – even angry or stressed. When some of these feelings become too predominant and translate into thoughts and behaviors that aren’t in line with who you are it might be a good idea to look into your mental health.
While it is imperative to seek out the counsel of a trained professional, it can be helpful to understand some basic signs and symptoms that could potentially signal a mental health condition. If they are left untreated, mental health disorders can be extremely detrimental to the health and wellbeing of the afflicted person – even fatal. That said the treatments that are available for these mental health conditions have the potential to make massive impacts in patients’ lives.
Through seeking help with and identifying mental health disorders people can hope to recover, come to terms with their experiences and situations and live full, dignified lives. Let’s have a look at some common mental disorders, along with some common symptoms, signs, and other information.
Types of Mental Health Disorders
Anxiety disorders are the most common mental health condition in the US, affecting about 18.1% of Americans each year. There are several different kinds of anxiety disorders ranging from generalized to obsessive-compulsive. With so many people being affected by this mental health disorder it is good to understand how to spot it and what it may feel like.
Signs and Symptoms:
Anxiety presents differently in everybody. From nervousness and shakes to stomach pains and paranoia, a sense of uneasiness is common. This can present as sweaty palms or a need to control things. Some people can have generalized anxiety where they cannot seem to shake a sense of diseases and some people suffer from anxiety brought on by acute situations that could be associated with trauma.
Different Types of Anxiety Disorders:
Generalized Anxiety Disorder – A generalized and constant state of dread or doom that colors your whole life. GAD is not associated with a specific event or situation.
Obsessive-Compulsive Disorder – This is where recurring thoughts that you don’t want drive you to compulsively and repetitively act in certain ways.
Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder – An irrational fight or flight response is triggered by thoughts, feelings or events that are associated with a stressful or traumatic experience.
Panic Disorder – The affected person suffers from panic attacks which are completely overwhelming. These can include things like heart palpitations, hyperventilating, sweating and shaking.
Social Anxiety Disorder – This is a very common form of anxiety disorder that is when people have stress regarding certain or all social interactions. Anything from public speaking to intimacy.
Roughly 10% of Americans suffer from mood disorders. They are defined by a distortion between the affected individual’s emotional state and their situation.
Signs and Symptoms:
When reality and the person’s emotional state aren’t in line can indicate a possible mood disorder. For example, if somebody is manically happy when they have just received an eviction notice or chronically depressed despite living a seemingly full and rich life. These types of incongruities could indicate some kind of mood disorder.
Different Types of Mood Disorders:
Seasonal Affective Disorder – This is commonly attributed to a lack of sunlight and is thought to be more predominant in arctic climates that receive nearly no sunlight in the winter.
Bipolar Disorder – This is characterized by sudden swings between irritable, sad lows and manically happy, giddy highs.
Dysthymia – Dysthymia is another common mood disorder that is characterized as a persistent and mild form of depression. While mild, the chronic nature of dysthymia has been known in some cases to lead to major depression after at least 2 years.
Substance-Induced Mood Disorder – This can present in a variety of ways and occurs as a result of drug addiction and use.
Psychotic disorders are a serious type of mental health condition that can cause people to hear voices and become totally out of touch with their surroundings. This can pose an obvious threat to their wellbeing and the safety of those around them as well and requires thorough, consistent treatment to live with.
Signs and Symptoms:
Psychotic disorders such as schizophrenia and schizoaffective disorder can present as thoughts and voices ‘heard’ by the affected person, but not perceived as having come from them. In other words, hearing things and thoughts that aren’t actually there. Other forms of psychotic disorders can involve persistent delusions about real situations.
Different Types of Psychotic Disorders
Schizophrenia – changes in behaviors and moods due to hallucinations. This is the most common form of psychotic disorder. When paired with a mood disorder, it is referred to as schizoaffective disorder.
Brief Psychotic Disorder – This involves short psychotic episodes and usually comes in response to stressful situations.
Delusional Disorder – When somebody has persistent, unwavering, and false beliefs about real-life situations they may be suffering from delusional disorder.
Paraphrenia – Paraphrenia is usually temporary and treatable to a full recovery. This involves paranoid delusions but no personality deterioration.
Substance-induced Psychotic Disorder – Commonly known as psychosis, this is a psychotic disorder that presents with hallucinations and delusions. In the case of substance-induced psychotic disorder, these effects are brought on directly by the effects of using substances. Withdrawal from the absence of substances can also cause substance-induced psychotic disorder.
While it can certainly be an intimidating or scary prospect to come to terms with mental health disorders, treatments have come a long way.
There are different kinds of treatments available for all of these very common mental health conditions that will greatly improve the quality of life of the patient. From medication to cognitive behavioral therapy and more, it is incredible what you can conquer with a little help. If you suspect that you or somebody you care about is suffering from any of these conditions, don’t delay in connecting to help and living a brighter life.