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The month of October has been declared Mental Health Awareness Month with the objective of not only educating the public about mental health but also to reduce the stigma and discrimination that people with mental illness are often subjected to.
Mental health refers to our cognitive, behavioural, and emotional wellbeing - it is all about how we think, feel, and behave. Mental health can affect daily life, relationships, and even physical health. Mental health also includes a person's ability to enjoy life - to attain a balance between life activities and efforts to achieve psychological resilience.
The World Health Organisation stresses that mental health "is not just the absence of mental disorder." Experts say we all have the potential to develop mental health problems, no matter how old we are, whether we are male or female, rich or poor, or which ethnic group we belong to.
Mental health problems, such as depression, anxiety, substance abuse and job stress are common, affecting individuals, their families and co-workers, and the broader community. In addition, they have a direct impact on workplaces through increased absenteeism, reduced productivity, and increased costs. Very few South Africans seek treatment for their mental disorders. When we experience mental health challenges, all aspects of our life can be affected. If we are experiencing stress at home this will affect our work performance, and if we are stressed at work, we often bring this back home.
Mental health problems are the result of a complex interplay between biological, psychological, social and environmental factors. There are various ways people with mental health problems might receive treatment. It is important to know that what works for one person may not work for another; this is especially the case with mental health. Some strategies or treatments are more successful when combined with others. A patient with a chronic mental disorder may choose different options at different stages in their life.
Treatments can include psychotherapy, medication and self-help strategies.
The great news is that mental illness can be changed into mental health. Once a mental challenge has been identified it can be treated and managed and life can be fulfilling and happy. Too many people go through life without seeking help. Life can be better!
I am trained to assist you work through these issues and experience the joy and happiness of life. Contact me at firstname.lastname@example.org or on 084 779 4889. Visit my website at www.nadinetherapy.co.za.
Credit: sadag.org, gov.za, www.medicalnewstoday.com
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