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Your Mental Health Should Be Your Priority

Oluwaseyi is a Pharm.D undergraduate and has interesting knowledge on health topics.

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Introduction

Depression, anxiety disorders, schizophrenia, and eating disorders are just a few of the mental ailments that people in society suffer from. Genetics, stress, early trauma, unhealthy habits, and so on are all variables that contribute to mental diseases. Mental diseases are also sometimes caused by socioeconomic issues such as poverty and a low standard of living. According to the World Health Organization (WHO), mental health is a condition of well-being in which an individual recognizes his or her abilities, can manage typical life challenges, work efficiently, and contribute to his or her community. Mental health encompasses not only the absence of mental illnesses or disabilities but also the maintenance of overall well-being and enjoyment. The quality of our mental health is extremely vital to us as humans since it allows us to think, interact, express feelings, and survive. As a result, purposeful efforts should be made to align a healthy mind with each individual.


Mental Health and SDGs

Social inclusion and equity, universal health coverage, access to justice and human rights, and long-term economic development all depend on mental health. When mental illnesses are addressed, the United Nations' sustainable development goals align and have a better chance of being met. Good mental health is related to the ability to reach the SDGs. Goal 3 (good health and well-being), for example, is inextricably linked to good mental health. While other SDGs (sustainable development goals) depend on an overall mentally healthy society. Mental health problems constitute an enormous burden to individuals and societies, hence, there is a need to treat our mental health as our priority.


Indicators of mental illnesses

There are several early warning indicators that an individual may be suffering from one or more mental illnesses. Some of which include:

  • Withdrawing from friends, family, and co-workers.
  • Avoiding activities they would normally enjoy.
  • Sleeping too much or too little.
  • Eating less or more.
  • Feeling hopeless.
  • Displaying negative emotions.
  • Using mood-altering substances like alcohol and nicotine more frequently.
  • Experiencing delusions.
  • Thinking of harming themselves or others, and so on.

When these signs are recognised, it is critical to take prompt action, whether by the person or a friend, to seek appropriate medical help because mental health is a top priority.


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Taking the right steps for your mental health

When there is a problem that is bothering one's mind, it is vital to confide in a trustworthy friend, relative, therapist, or psychiatrist. This is because friends and family can make one feel loved and cared for, as well as provide diverse perspectives on life problems that can help see the bright side of things. Struggles and difficulties in life usually have an impact on a person's psyche and mindset. If bad things are fed into these conflicts, they develop and cause mental disorders, which can lead to death in extreme circumstances. Talking to a sympathetic ear can be a very effective method to deal with challenges. As a result, it is critical to surround oneself with positive people who respect a person’s personality, abilities, faults, flaws, and objectives. These individuals will assist in resolving situations that may have a negative impact on a person’s mental health status.


Additionally, leading and sustaining a positive lifestyle is beneficial to one's mental health. Exercising consistently, eating balanced and healthy meals, and drinking plenty of water can improve one's mental health, raise self-esteem, aid concentration, and make one look and feel better. What we eat has an impact not just on our physical health but also on our mental health and well-being. As a result, it is vital to guarantee that one consumes high-quality food, which will boost one's mental health.


It is also vital to practise self-care. This refers to proactive measures that an individual can do to relieve stress, workload, or other stressful situations. These could include taking breaks, asking for help, relaxing, or declining to participate in certain activities. We are not robots, and our biological nature makes us prone to exhaustion. If things become too much for you, ask for help or take a break to rest. It's critical to understand how to deal with stress in the most effective way possible. When the mind is subjected to long periods of strong or continuous stress, it becomes frail. Stopping to do something one enjoys, such as listening to music or chatting with a friend, can go a long way toward preventing mental diseases.


Physical exams, lab tests, and psychological evaluation are some of the methods used to diagnose mental diseases. After a successful diagnostic test, psychotherapy, often known as “talk therapy” (talking with a mental health expert about a problem and related difficulties), can be used. There are many different styles of psychotherapy, each with its approach to mental health improvement. A person learns about his/her condition, as well as moods, feelings, ideas, and behaviour, during psychotherapy. He/she can develop coping and stress management techniques using the insights and knowledge obtained. It can happen in a one-on-one setting, in a group setting, or with family members. Prescription medications such as antidepressants and antipsychotics can also help. Psychiatric drugs can not cure mental diseases, but they can often help to alleviate symptoms. Other treatments, such as psychotherapy, may benefit from the use of psychiatric medicines.


Conclusion

To summarise, spending time on negative thoughts or events is only going to make things worse. Those who are experiencing stress, anxiety, or depression should reach out, speak up, and seek help. Keep in mind that your mental health should always come first. It determines your productivity as well as your projections and attitude to others. As a result, once indications and symptoms are identified, it is critical to take the appropriate steps to end mental illnesses.

© 2022 Oluwaseyi Egbewande

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