Did you know that over 450 million people suffer from mental disorders around the world? According to the World Health Organisation (WHO), one out of every four persons is likely to experience mental illness at a certain point in their lives. In Malaysia, 609 suicide cases were reported in 2019, increasing to 631 in 2020 and 336 cases merely on the first quarter of 2021 which is January 1 to March 31. Also, it was stated that more than 264 million people worldwide are affected by depression.
In short, mental health problems involves a broad range of disorders that impact your emotions, thoughts, and behaviour. Depression, schizophrenia, anxiety disorders, and eating disorders are only some of the mental illnesses that people suffer from. This article will tell you everything about mental illness.
- Unhappy or depressed for no reason
- Excessive anxieties or concerns
- Confusion in thought or a loss of concentration
- Mood swings that are strong highs and lows
- Cutting off social interactions and activities
- Tend to eat much more or a lot lesser than they did previously
- Excessive weariness, loss of energy, or sleeping difficulties
- Having delusions, paranoia, or hallucinations
- Unable to deal with day-to-day issues or pressure
- Been drinking a lot and/or even using drugs
- Having the thought of suicidal
Mental Illness Reasons and Factors:
- Genetics: Mental illness commonly runs in families. It is more likely in those who have a mental disorder in their biological family. Your chance of having a mental disorder may be enhanced by certain genes while circumstances in your life may be the spark to it.
- Illnesses: Some illnesses have been related to brain damage, as well as the beginning or progression of mental disorders.
- Prenatal injury: Certain data shows that a disruption of early fetal growth and development or birth trauma, such as loss of oxygen to the brain, could be a factor in the development of some disorders. For example, autism spectrum disorder.
- Drug/Alcohol abuse: It has been related to anxiety, despair, and paranoia, especially among long-term users.
- Undernutrition and toxic exposure: For example, lead.
- Trauma: A past experience of severe psychological trauma during childhood. Traumatizing events that took place when you were a child could have a lasting impact on your life. It could be physical, emotional, or sexual abuse.
- Early loss and traumatic incidents: For example, losing a parent or loved one, or being in a car accident. Especially during the COVID-19 pandemic, there have been over 765,000 coronavirus cases reported in Malaysia, with 5,327 deaths, and approximately 7,000 new cases reported every day.
- Unhealthy behaviours: For example, not having enough sleep, eating too little or even not eating
- Divorce or death
- Having a family that is often distressing
- Self-doubt, poor self-esteem, worry, rage, and loneliness
- Changing schools or jobs: Those who move around a lot have less good relationships. They also have a low level of life satisfaction and low overall happiness.
- Expectations depending on social or cultural factors: A society that correlates beauty with thinness, for example, can lead to the formation of eating disorders.
- Substance abuse: abuse of drugs or alcohol by the individual or his or her parents
First of all, it is very important for a mental illness patient to talk about his or her feelings. As a quote said by Glenn Close, a famous American actress, “What mental health needs are more sunlight, more candour, more unashamed conversation about illnesses that affect not only individuals but their families as well.” Talk to them in a comfortable environment where you won’t be disturbed and where there will be very few distractions. Remember to have the conversation in a calm and relaxed manner. During the conversation, allow them to guide the conversation at their own speed. Don’t make them feel obligated to tell you whatever they aren’t ready to share. You may have been the first person they’ve had the opportunity to speak with about this and it requires a lot of bravery and trust. You’re the one they are willing to share their darkest secrets, so be a good listener. Maintain caring eye contact and ask them suitable questions occasionally, but do refrain from prying.
Treatment is essential for every mental illness patient. Therefore, encourage them to seek treatment. Offer to assist in setting up initial visits with a professional to determine what’s happening. Even accompany the individual to the doctor if you could. If you do decide to accompany the person, make a list of any notes or questions you may have ahead of time so that you can cover all of the key aspects. Let them make their own decisions rather than take charge on your own.
Bring them along on activities and gatherings. One of the symptoms of having a mental illness would be cutting off social interactions and activities. Nevertheless, take them out more frequently and bring them back to the circle of friends. Meanwhile, be on the lookout for him or her who is turning upset or confused and voice your concern when you feel something wrong about them. “ ‘Positive vibes only’ isn’t a thing. Humans have a wide range of emotions and that’s OK.”, said Molly Bahr, LHMC. Show them that it is OK to show emotions.
- Using sarcasm or taking their situation lightly: Do not ever make jokes about their condition. Respect and understanding should be shown and let them know that you care.
- “All you have to do now is change your mentality”: It is not their fault for having a mental disorder. All you have to do is listen to what they want to express and give the person reason to believe that he or she will be able to recover.
- “My (whoever) has the same problem as you”: People think that relating to other people would make the patient feel connected. However, do remember that having a mental disorder differs for everyone. They get mental illness for different reasons.
Keep in mind that brain and behaviour abnormalities are treatable although they can be unsettling. Individuals with various illnesses can live long and healthy lives if they get treatment as soon as possible. It is more vital than ever to erase discrimination and encourage people to seek treatment rather than suffer in silence. Always keep in mind that there is hope with assistance.
|Befrienders KL||Emotional assistance people who are isolated, in pain, in despair, or have suicidal thoughts, 24 hours a day, 7 days a week. It’s completely free and private.||Tel: 603-79568145Email: [email protected]|
|Talian Kasih||The Malaysian government has established a 24-hour, nationwide helpline to give emergency treatment to persons suffering from mental illness or who have been victims of abuse.||Tel: 15999WhatsApp 019-2615999Email: [email protected]|