Thursday 3 March 2016

The Invisible Label - How To Define Mental Health

- Sophie Rees

A mental health difficulty isn’t a lifestyle choice and it can happen to anyone. It is about the mind being at conflict with itself which is the biggest battle for someone to overcome. The mind controls not only the body but also someone’s personality and how they react to everyday situations. Mental health difficulties are an illness so powerful that it can change a life drastically if it is not dealt with soon enough. During time at university, one’s well-being is of utmost importance as it quality reflects in one’s work on an academic degree course. Therefore, being able to confront the issue of mental health correctly is an important move to get right before seeking a plan to tackle the problem.

Not just one type
Mental health difficulties cannot be labelled under one health condition, it comes within a series of mentally related problems. There are many different types of mental health difficulties, some are physically related such as anorexia, some are socially related like social anxiety and some are more personally related such as depression. Mental health problems do not fall exactly into one of these categories, in fact, they become quite scattered, so they can be tackled in different ways by knowing which category the problem is most focussed in. For example, I suffered with anorexia which has a physical effect on body weight but is also socially linked with body consciousness around others and can make one’s personality become blurred.

Different recovery routes
Depending on the type of mental health difficulty someone has and where its focus most hangs (physical, social, personal), there are different ways of approaching the problem whilst most importantly knowing that there is always a way around it. Here are different ways people seek help:
  • Talking about their mental health – not everyone has the courage to firmly accept their problem and talk to someone else about it but it is the best way to start solving the problem.
  • Seeking medical advice – even if you do not wish to tell those closest to you about your mental health, a doctor will always listen and keep everything you tell them confidential whilst planning the next steps of recovery with you.
  • Support Groups –where you can meet other people going through the same problem or perhaps similar problems and knowing that you are not alone in this.
  • Blogging – writing about your problems helps a lot when you do not wish to talk it through with anyone but want to get what you think about mental health out of your mind for others to read.

Acceptance and moving on after recovery

The most difficult part to any mental health difficulty is accepting the problem you had as part of your life and moving on to look at other life choices for the future. Having a mental health difficulty does not define you, choosing to overcome it  and seek out the best in life shows the brave person you are and that because of this you have become stronger than mental health itself.

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