What are Mental Health Disorders and Its Causes?
MANY PEOPLE HAVE MENTAL HEALTH CONCERNS FROM TIME TO TIME
But a mental health concern becomes a mental illness when ongoing signs and symptoms cause frequent stress and affect your ability to function. Mental illness is a leading cause of disability. Untreated mental illness can cause severe emotional, behavioural, and physical health problems. Complications sometimes linked to mental illness include:
Unhappiness and decreased enjoyment of life
Relationship difficulties including sexual dysfunction or uninterest
Problems with tobacco, alcohol, and other drugs
Missed work or school, or other problems related to work or school
Legal and financial problems
Poverty and homelessness
Self-harm and harm to others, including suicide or homicide
Weakened immune system, so your body has a hard time resisting infections and other medical conditions
WHAT SIGNS AND SYMPTOMS TO LOOK OUT FOR
Signs and symptoms of mental illness can vary, depending on the disorder, circumstances and other factors. Mental illness symptoms can affect emotions, thoughts, and behaviours. Examples of signs and symptoms include:
Feeling sad or down
Confused thinking or reduced ability to concentrate
Excessive fears or worries, or extreme feelings of guilt
Extreme mood changes of highs and lows
Withdrawal from friends and activities
Significant tiredness, low energy or problems sleeping
Detachment from reality (delusions), paranoia or hallucinations
Inability to cope with daily problems or stress
Trouble understanding and relating to situations and to people
Problems with alcohol or drug use
Major changes in eating habits
Sex drive changes
Excessive anger, hostility or violence
Sometimes symptoms of a mental health disorder appear as physical problems, such as stomach pain, back pain, headaches, or other unexplained aches and pains.
WHEN TO SEE A DOCTOR
If you have any signs or symptoms of any mental illness and facing the complications listed above, see your primary care provider or a Mental Health Professional. Most mental illnesses don't improve on their own, and if untreated, a mental illness may get worse over time and cause serious problems.
HELPING A LOVED ONE
If your loved one shows signs of mental illness, have an open and honest discussion with them about these concerns. You can also help your loved one find a qualified mental health professional and make an appointment.
If your loved one has committed or is considering self-harm, and/or if they have harmed others, take them to the hospital or call for emergency help.
WHAT COULD BE CAUSING SUCH ISSUES?
Mental illnesses, in general, are thought to be caused by a combination of genetic and environmental factors:
Mental illness is more common in people whose blood relatives also have a mental illness. Certain genes may increase your risk of developing a mental illness, and your life situation may trigger it.
Neurotransmitters are naturally occurring brain chemicals that carry signals to other parts of your brain and body. When the neural networks involving these chemicals are impaired, the function of nerve receptors and nerve systems change, leading to depression and other emotional disorders.
A disorder is the result of an interaction between a predispositional vulnerability (inherited traits or brain chemistry) and life experiences as well as environmental stressors. For example, a person may be vulnerable to become depressed, but may not develop depression unless they are exposed to specific environmental factors.
ENVIRONMENTAL EXPOSURE BEFORE BIRTH
Exposure to environmental stressors, inflammatory conditions, toxins, alcohol, or drugs while in the womb can sometimes be linked to mental illness.
CERTAIN RISK FACTORS MAY INCREASE YOUR RISK OF DEVELOPING A MENTAL ILLNESS, INCLUDING:
A history of mental illness in a blood relative, such as a parent or sibling
Stressful life situations, such as financial problems, a loved one's death or a divorce
An ongoing (chronic) medical condition, such as diabetes
Brain damage as a result of a serious injury (traumatic brain injury), such as a violent blow to the head
Traumatic experiences, such as military combat or assault
Use of alcohol or recreational drugs
A childhood history of abuse or neglect
Few friends or few healthy relationships
A previous mental illness
DETERMINING WHAT MENTAL HEALTH ISSUES YOU MAY HAVE
Sometimes it's difficult to find out which mental illness may be causing your symptoms. But taking the time and effort to get an accurate diagnosis will help determine the appropriate treatment. The more information you have, the more you will be prepared to work with your mental health professional in understanding what your symptoms may represent. At the centre determine a diagnosis and check for related complications, we go through the following steps:
A PHYSICAL EXAM
Your doctor will try to rule out physical problems that could cause your symptoms.
These may include, for example, a check of your thyroid function or a screening for alcohol and drugs.
A PSYCHOLOGICAL EVALUATION
A mental health professional talks to you about your symptoms, thoughts, feelings and behaviour patterns. You may be asked to fill out a questionnaire to help answer these questions.
WE PROVIDE TREATMENT SERVICES FOR ISSUES SUCH AS
This class covers a wide range of problems that usually begin in infancy or childhood, often before the child begins grade school.
BIPOLAR & RELATED
This class includes disorders with alternating episodes of mania — periods of excessive activity, energy, and excitement — and depression.
Inappropriate anticipation of future danger or misfortune, along with excessive worrying.
TRAUMA & STRESSOR RELATED DISORDERS
These are adjustment disorders in which a person has trouble coping during or after a stressful life event.
SOMATIC SYMPTOM & RELATED DISORDERS
A person with physical complaints that may or may not be traceable to a medical cause and creates emotional distress and problems functioning.
SUBSTANCE RELATED &
These include problems associated with the excessive use of alcohol, caffeine, tobacco and drugs. This class also includes gambling disorder, internet, food and pornography addiction.
Acquired (rather than developmental) cognitive problems affect your ability to think and reason.
These are disorders of sleep severe enough to require clinical attention, such as insomnia, sleep apnea and restless legs syndrome.
FEEDING & EATING
Behavioural disturbances related to eating that impact nutrition and health, due to recurring thoughts and emotional dysfunctions.
SCHIZOPHRENIA SPECTRUM & OTHER PSYCHOTIC DISORDERS
Psychotic disorders cause detachment from reality — such as delusions, hallucinations, and disorganized thinking and speech.
These include disorders that affect your levels of sadness and happiness, and they can disrupt your ability to function.
Preoccupations or obsessions and repetitive thoughts and actions.
These are disorders in which your sense of self is disrupted.
A lasting pattern of emotional instability and unhealthy behavior that causes problems in your life and relationships.
DISRUPTIVE, IMPULSE CONTROL & CONDUCT DISORDERS
These disorders include problems with emotional and behavioral self-control.
Sexual interest that causes personal distress or impairment or causes potential or actual harm to another person.
These include disorders of sexual response, such as premature ejaculation and female orgasmic disorder.
Inappropriate elimination of urine or stool by accident or on purpose. Bed-wetting (enuresis) is an example.
OTHER MENTAL DISORDERS
This class includes mental disorders that are due to other medical conditions or that don't meet the full criteria for one of the above disorders.