Hope for Mental Illness: Awareness and Treatment Options

2016-05-18_LHC_2Approximately 1 in 5 adults in the U.S.— that’s 43.8 million people — experience mental illness in any given year. Anxiety disorders affect 18 percent of American adults, and among people aged 15 to 24, suicide is the second leading cause of death. While the numbers are staggering, studies show that awareness and education help prompt more people to speak out and seek treatment. In honor of National Mental Health Month, we’ve provided a list of common signs of mental illness and information about treatment benefits and options.

Watch for These Signs

Every mental illness has its own set of symptoms, and symptoms may vary from person to person. According to the National Alliance on Mental Illness (NAMI), there are some common signs that may indicate mental illness in adults or teens.

  • Excessive worrying or fear
  • Feeling excessively sad or low
  • Problems concentrating or feeling confused
  • Extreme mood changes, including uncontrollable “highs”
  • Avoiding friends and social activities
  • Changes in sleeping habits or feeling tired and low on energy
  • Changes in eating habits, such as increased hunger or lack of appetite
  • Changes in sex drive
  • Substance abuse
  • Multiple physical ailments without obvious causes, such as headaches, stomach aches, or vague ongoing pains
  • Thinking about suicide
  • Inability to carry out daily activities or handle daily problems and stress

Hope for Recovery

Whether you or a loved one is suffering from depression, anxiety, or another mental health disorder, remember that recovery is possible. Finding the right combination of treatment and support for each patient is important. Patients who are involved in designing their own treatment plan, as well as selecting care providers and services will typically experience a better outcome.

Most patients rely on a mix of medications, counseling, social support, and education. Support may include acceptance and encouragement from family and friends or support groups. Therapy provides tools to rework your thinking patterns, learn relaxation skills, or discover methods to help you heal from trauma.

Often, addressing a mental health problem also improves physical health. This cascade effect can reduce overall health spending and ease the stress and financial strain on a patient’s family.

Don’t Delay Help

If you or a loved one is experiencing signs of a mental health issue, don’t wait to ask for help. The Behavioral Medicine team at LeBauer HealthCare includes doctors and counselors who are skilled at diagnosing and treating a wide range of mental health disorders. Using a combination of medication, counseling, support, and education, these providers offer confidential and caring mental health treatment at four locations in Greensboro and High Point, NC.

To schedule an appointment at any of these locations, call 336.547.1574.

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