Mental health and mental illness facts
Mental health is more than just being free of a mental illness.
It is more of an optimal level of thinking, feeling, and relating to others.
Mentally healthy individuals tend to have better medical health, productivity, and social relationships.
Mental illness refers to all of the diagnosable mental disorders and is characterized by
abnormalities in thinking, feelings, or behaviors.
Some of the most common types of mental illness include anxiety, depressive, behavioral,
and substance-abuse disorders.
There is no single cause for mental illness. Rather, it is the result of a complex group of genetic,
psychological, and environmental factors.
While everyone experiences sadness, anxiety, irritability, and moodiness at times, moods, thoughts, behaviors,
or use of substances that interfere with a person's ability to function well physically, socially, at work, school,
or home are characteristics of mental illness.
There is no one test that definitively indicates whether someone has a mental illness. Therefore, health-care practitioners
diagnose a mental disorder by gathering comprehensive medical, family, and mental-health information.
Talk therapy (psychotherapy) is usually considered the first line of care in helping a person with a mental illness.
It is an important part of helping individuals with a mental disorder achieve the highest level of functioning possible.
Psychotherapies that have been found to be effective in treating many mental disorders include family focused therapy,
psycho-education, cognitive therapy, interpersonal therapy, and social rhythm therapy.
Medications may play an important role in the treatment of a mental illness, particularly when the symptoms
are severe or do not adequately respond to psychotherapy.
A variety of factors can contribute to the prevention of mental-health disorders.
Individuals with mental illness are at risk for a variety of challenges, but these risks
can be greatly reduced with treatment, particularly when it is timely.