People often miss the early warning signs of mental illness. That’s because there is no exact science behind diagnosing a mental condition.
Sometimes people may simply be having a bad day, which results in some mood swings or irritability, but that does not mean they have a mental illness, right?
So, how do you identify someone who is suffering from a mental health issue? In fact, there are several types of mental illnesses, so you can’t possibly distinguish one from another. In this article, we will elaborate on some common signs of mental illness that may hamper your health seriously in the future.
What are the 5 Warning Signs of a Mental Illness?
The symptoms of mental illness can be managed with psychotherapy or medication. However, you may not know it, but 1 in every 5 people suffers from mental health issues. The top 5 signs of mental illnesses are;
- Excessive anxiety, paranoia, or worry.
- Drastic changes in sleeping or eating patterns.
- Social withdrawal.
- Long-lasting sadness/irritability.
- Extreme mood swings.
Excessive Anxiety, Paranoia, or Worry
If you are facing extreme anxiety or low self-esteem, you are likely to be paranoid too. That’s because you are already on edge and tend to interpret things in a negative light. Being anxious about something can make you paranoid, and paranoia can also cause anxiety disorders. There are several anxiety disorders such as depression, social isolation, bipolar disorder, substance abuse, etc.
Drastic Changes in Sleeping, or Eating Patterns
Most people notice changes in their eating or sleeping patterns as they age. But, that change also happens gradually, so when you see drastic changes in someone’s sleeping or eating habits, it denotes intricate mental health problems. For example, this symptom can be a significant sign of maladaptive daydreaming. It can also lead to losing focus, lacking energy, and difficulty completing tasks.
Social withdrawal is the most common symptom of chronic depression. It can also be a symptom of the maladaptive daydreaming disorder because when you daydream with such vivid details and story-like features, you tend to continue it.
Now, that results in being overwhelmed with one’s dreams so much that they avoid interacting with other people. You can also google what is bipolar disorder and find that social withdrawal is a symptom of that mental health issue.
Long-Lasting Sadness, or Irritability
Sometimes when people face a sudden trauma or lose a loved one, they tend to be sad for a long time. But, if you know someone who hasn’t had these experiences but is still feeling low and irritated, it means they have an underlying mental health problem.
For example, they may have diseases like dysthymia, maladaptive daydreaming, Alzheimer’s, dementia, etc. Long-term irritability also results in lacking productivity and losing self-esteem.
Extreme Mood Swings
Extreme mood swings can indicate many mental health issues, but the most crucial one is bipolar disorder. There are also cyclothymic disorders, schizophrenic disorder, personality disorder, dysthymia, and disruptive mood dysregulation disorder, whose initial signs are rapid mood swings. It is one symptom that is easy to notice in someone, so if you know someone who has these signs, take them to a doctor now.
What Causes Mental Illness?
A person can evolve mental health issues under several circumstances. It may lie in their genetics, or it may trigger some unfortunate events in their entire lifetime. So, let’s take a look at some of the probable reasons behind mental health issues.
If you have someone in your family with a history of mental health episodes, you may develop psychological issues. That’s because you inherit these genes from your ancestors, which certainly leaves you in the risk zone of developing such a health issue. In addition, people who have these kinds of genetic dispositions will likely get triggered by some environmental factors easily.
Environmental Exposure At the Fetal Stage
If a pregnant woman suffers from drug abuse, alcohol abuse, anxiety, depression, or other kinds of environmental stressors, it hampers the baby’s mental health. The symptoms of mental health issues may not become apparent as soon as the baby is born. However, it will make the child more prone to develop such an issue as he ages.
Chemical Imbalance in Brain
Your brain has some neurotransmitter that carries signals from one part of your brain to another. Now, if these neurotransmitters lose their balance, that will impair the brain’s usual functions. In addition, it will result in the impairment of one’s central nervous system, resulting in a mental health issue.
How to Get Help?
The first and foremost thing to remember here is that asking for help for mental health problems is not a shame. If you want to get better, you have to know all about your brain’s health condition and take a step to rectify it if something goes wrong. There are a few things you can do here, such as;
- You can always go to a local MHA affiliate who provides counseling services.
- You can contact a reputed therapist and schedule a session.
- You can talk to a trusted adult.
We know diagnosing mental illness signs is not an easy task. That is why we have outlined the most prevalent symptoms of such health issues so that you can interpret them faster.
If you are suffering from any of these symptoms or know someone who is, make sure you get proper help from a knowledgeable person. The right treatment at the earliest onset can help you get better.