Good mental health is a state of well-being where an individual is able to effectively manage their emotions, thoughts, and behaviors. It encompasses a sense of satisfaction and purpose, as well as the ability to form positive relationships and cope with the normal stresses of life. People with good mental health are able to enjoy life and make the most of their potential.
In today’s society, more and more people are becoming aware of mental health and it’s importance in one’s overall well-being. A number of organizations, such as the World Health Organization (WHO), corporations, and academic institutions, have taken the lead by launching initiatives aimed at increasing awareness and providing support for those struggling with mental health issues. This growing attention to mental health is a positive step towards a happier, healthier society.
Despite these efforts, many people are still at risk. According to the National Institute of Mental Health, about 1 in 4 adults can experience mental health problems in a year. Mental health conditions are among the top causes of disability in developed countries like the U.S. and are a challenge for people worldwide.
Mental health is not just a personal issue. It affects everyone in our lives – from our loved ones to our communities, societies, and cultures. This article will shed light on facts about mental health and why it matters.
Mental health difficulties can occur at any age, including childhood.
A common misconception about the onset of mental health conditions is that they only happen during adulthood. In reality, mental health conditions can affect individuals of all ages and can start during childhood. A study led by Marco Solmi conducted a meta-analysis of 192 research studies investigating the onset of mental disorders. The studies covered 700,000 patients diagnosed with mental illness. Their team examined when these illnesses started, including what percentage of people had a mental disorder before they were 14, 18, or 25.
The team discovered that an average of 14.5 years is when these problems start. Almost 35% of people had a mental disorder before they were 14, 48% before 18, and 63% before 25. This research demonstrates that many mental health problems start before people reach adulthood, and highlights the need to help young people with mental health issues. By doing so, we can help promote their mental well-being, enabling them to lead fulfilling and productive lives.
Genetics plays a role in the development of mental health disorders, but it’s not the only factor.
When you suspect you are suffering from a mental illness, it’s natural to want to know how you got it. It’s a common thought to consider the possibility of it being inherited. You are not wrong, but genetics is just one of many factors that give rise to mental ill-health. The National Institute of Mental Health suggests that mental disorders result from a combination of biological, environmental, psychological, and genetic factors.
To this day, studies are still ongoing for genetic tests to determine if you are at a higher risk of developing specific mental illnesses. But looking at your family history and talking to your relatives can give you some clues. Genetics is just one aspect. Other things like stress, traumatic experiences, health problems, imbalances in the brain, substance abuse, and loneliness can also play a role in mental health problems.
Chronic stress can lead to physical changes in the brain and increase the risk of mental health problems.
Stress is a natural reaction to challenging or perceived dangerous situations. It is caused by hormones released in the body that prepares us to respond to the stressor. Short-term stress can be beneficial, helping us to be productive and meet deadlines, but chronic and long-lasting stress can negatively impact our mental health.
Chronic stress is linked to depression, anxiety as well as changes in the structure of the brain. The brain responds to stress within seconds, releasing chemicals and hormones that affect memory and emotion regulation. Chronic stress can alter how the brain responds to stress and may increase the risk of mental illness.
Mental health affects physical health and vice versa.
It’s no secret that our mental health and physical health are intertwined. Your state of mind greatly impacts your overall health and well-being. The World Health Organization (WHO) recognizes this link and states that there is no optimal physical health without mental health.
Research has shown that mental health problems, such as depression, anxiety, and stress, can have a negative impact on physical health. For example, depression increases the risk of developing chronic physical conditions like heart disease, stroke, and diabetes. On the other hand, living with a chronic physical condition can also increase the risk of developing mental health problems, such as anxiety or depression. Thus, caring for your mental and physical health can help you feel your best.
Mental health problems are treatable, and recovery is possible.
A common myth for people with mental health problems is that recovery is unachievable, and once you’re diagnosed, there is no hope. The truth is it is possible to get better from mental health issues, and many people do. With the right support and techniques, you can learn to manage your symptoms and have more control over your life. Even for those with serious mental health problems, there is still hope.
Your recovery journey is a process. It may not be easy, and setbacks may occur, but focusing on learning about yourself and developing coping strategies can help. When you have discovered what self-care techniques and treatments work best for you, you’ll be better equipped to manage them and reduce their impact on your life. Recovery for each individual is different. What recovery means to you is personal, but the goal remains the same: finding ways to live the life you want and enjoy.
Creative expression through art, music, or writing can positively impact mental health.
Studies have shown that engaging in creative activities can lead to improved mood, reduced depression and anxiety, and a stronger immune system. According to the Journal of Positive Psychology, dedicating time to creative pursuits during the day is linked to increased feelings of joy, happiness, and optimism, also known as positive affect.
Personal creativity can take many forms and is a highly individual experience. To tap into your creativity, experiment with activities that interest you and bring happiness. As everyone is unique, finding the perfect creative outlet may require experimentation, and its possible to enjoy that experimentation. What’s important is how the activity makes you feel, regardless of any documented benefits.
Mental health conditions are not a sign of personal weakness or a choice.
Mental health conditions are not the result of personal weakness or a choice made by the individual. They are complex medical conditions caused by environmental, genetic, and biological factors. Just like physical illnesses, mental health conditions are not something a person can simply will themselves out of.
Further, mental health conditions are not personal failures or something to be ashamed of. Individuals living with mental health conditions can, and often do, lead fulfilling and productive lives with the right support and treatment. Seeking help and support is a sign of strength and courage, not weakness.
How to Seek Help for a Mental Health Problem
Seeking help for a mental health issue can feel daunting, but remember that you’re not alone. Mental health problems are a common and serious concern worldwide. The good news is that several countries are improving resources and support for those who need it. So, if you’re struggling with your mental health, know that there is help available, and you don’t have to go through it alone.
If you’re feeling overwhelmed and ready to find new, effective ways to deal with stress, anxiety, or other issues you may be experiencing, reaching out to a mental health professional could be exactly what you need. Book a session with your mental health professional, or you may opt to talk with our Certified rREST Coaches to help you along your wellness journey. You can check this link to book a session with rREST, and check out testimonials from clients who prioritized their personal well-being.
Seeking help is a sign of strength, not weakness. It’s a brave step towards taking control of your life and improving your overall mental health and well-being.