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Understand mental health and mental illness

Posted by Mords1944 on June 13th, 2020


Mental illness has long been a leading cause of death and disability. 30 to 60 percent of all patients who see doctors do so primarily for complaints due to emotional disturbances. Many productive people continually maintain a chronic neurotic adjustment to life. And most people have minor emotional disorders that are often not recognized but are medically important.

Despite all of this, the average person has a curious attitude toward mental health. She admits the importance of physical health, realizes that not all people who are in good physical condition are physically well and may even take some basic precautions against the disease. If you are not exactly smart about physical health, then you are at least interested and will seek advice from doctors, quacks, or advertisements.

But regarding her mental health, her attitude until recently has been strangely nonchalant. If he thinks about it at all, he considers it rather strange for him, much as he pays attention to the antics of a foreign bandit. He considers his friends and associates to be in perfect mental health; when his attention is forced on this subject by the "sudden" onset of mental illness in someone he knows, he is shocked and amazed.

If the affected person is a member of their own family, they attribute the illness to overwork, concern about finances, physical illness, or some other socially acceptable factor. If the affected person is simply an acquaintance, they will likely consider heredity, alcohol, and syphilis as probable causes. Only rarely does he try to think smartly about why these things happen or try to inform him by reading or consulting specialists in the field. This attitude seems particularly strange when you consider the horror with which mental illness is generally considered.

But even when you try to find out, you run into difficulties. In unguided reading, one encounters discrepancies and confusion that can seem completely puzzling.

Definitive instructions cannot be given to prevent mental illness, but a general understanding of the problems and processes involved often goes a long way in managing minor emotional distress, the neglect of which is an important factor in the development of serious disorders. Then, in addition to the problem of avoiding real madness, knowledge of the mechanisms that lead to mental alteration is the best guarantee against inefficiency, failure and unhappiness in life.

Few realize that the psychiatrist deals not only with real insanity, but with all those boundary conditions and maladjustments that are not normally considered to belong to the category of mental illness.

Types of mental disorders
Mental disorders include conditions so severe that even a trained person recognizes that the patient is crazy. However, these illnesses or psychoses are generally not recognized until they are so advanced that treatment becomes extremely difficult. No serious mental illness comes suddenly "out of the blue." Symptoms are present for months or years, but are usually disguised as a nervous breakdown, neurasthenia, or physical illness.

A second group comprises people who are not considered insane by their associates but who have several peculiar symptoms of almost any degree of severity. Morbid fears, compulsions, and obsessions, generally diagnosed as psychoneurosis with some modifying term, are particularly characteristic of this group. With these, chronic disability could also be placed, when the physical examination does not reveal an adequate basis for the symptoms presented.

The third group consists of individuals who are apparently not mentally or physically ill, but who fail to make a socially adequate adjustment. It includes certain types of alcoholics, criminals, homeless people and people with unusual sexual behavior. In this group we could also include those people who, although they apparently make a good social adjustment, are tremendously hampered by feelings of inadequacy, emotional instability, fears and other personality disorders that interfere with efficiency and happiness.

Also See: Mental Illness, Physical Illness, Minor Emotional, Unusual Sexual, Mental, Illness, Physical

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