Mental health affects us in many ways. It impacts how we think, feel, and act. There is a close connection with mental and physical health. Poor mental health is a risk factor for many chronic physical health conditions. Mental health can give us strength and the ability to cope with stress and life’s setbacks, too. Good mental health isn’t just the absence of depression and psychological issues. Being mentally or emotionally healthy enables us to take on and enjoy daily life.
Anyone can suffer from mental or emotional health problems—and over a lifetime most of us do. The good news is no one has to feel bad. There are ways to boost and protect our mental health. Plus, there’s help for those experiencing mental health issues like depression. If you or someone you know is facing difficult mental health issues, then talk to a medical professional about getting help.
Boosting Mental Health
Simple changes to daily life can have a big impact on improving our mental health. For those who suffer from depression, such changes may help lower the severity of symptoms.
What is Depression
Depression is a common and serious mood disorder that affects millions of adults in the U.S. Fortunately, it is also treatable. Depression can affect every aspect of life, causing problems with sleep, eating, energy, concentration, self-image, and even thoughts of death or suicide. Unfortunately, many of those in need do not often receive help due to the stigma surrounding depression and mental health in general.
Look for Signs
The signs and symptoms of depression can present themselves in different ways, depending on the person. It is important to know what to look for both in yourself and your loved ones. Depression can affect anyone—even a person who appears to live in relatively ideal circumstances. Symptoms may include:
The first step to treating depression is meeting with a medical professional to discuss a route to recovery. The way a person goes about treatment is different for everyone and depends on what they and their doctor think will help them best, whether that be therapy, medication, or something else entirely. Knowing the signs and plotting a plan to recovery before major symptoms occur are important as depression can be treated.
Suicidal tendencies can come with many warning signs that you can look for. It’s time to get help when you or someone you know is behaving in one or more of the following ways:
If you or someone you know is thinking about suicide, call the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline at 800-273-TALK. It’s always open, and you can talk to a trained counselor who can help you.