Not feeling like yourself lately? Have you been trying to figure out what could be wrong, but can’t quite put your finger on it? It’s more than just “one of those days” where you don’t feel like being bothered. You know that it goes beyond simply living a hectic lifestyle, but you just don’t know what’s going on with you. You’re drinking more than normal, crying for no reason, and your thoughts seem to be all over the place.
You know enough to know that something is off, and you want to change it, but have no idea where to start. There are a lot of adults and children who feel this way. They’re facing an inner battle with their mind and emotions that manifest through reckless behavior and negative thoughts. It’s ruining their social, personal, and professional lives, and there seems to be no end in sight.
Don’t Suffer in Silence
If you’ve felt this way, it's possible that you’re suffering from a mental illness. This is nothing to be ashamed of as 1 out of every 5 Americans is diagnosed with a mental health problem in a given year. From genetics and developmental problems to life experiences and hectic lifestyles, there are a lot of factors that play a role into why so many end up suffering from illnesses like depression, anxiety, chronic stress, and others. Unfortunately, because of the stigma associated with mental illness, many don’t come forward.
Signs Your Health is in Trouble
If you fear that you, your child, or someone else you know could be suffering from such illnesses, there’s no need to suffer in silence. Instead, recognize the signs & symptoms of mental and behavioral issues and get help from trusted medical professionals. Noticing one sign may not be cause for alarm (just a sign to slow down), however, a combination of these symptoms could be a sign that you need help.
- Anxiety – Stress is common and everyone feels it from time to time. However, when you start to feel anxious on a regular basis, this is cause for alarm. You might notice anxiety attacks including rapid heartbeat, shortness of breath, heart palpitations, headaches, restlessness, and clouded or racing thoughts.
- Sadness – When suffering from a mental health problem you may notice long periods of sadness. Things you were interested in doing you no longer want to do. You isolate yourself socially. You’re always feeling sad and it lasts weeks at a time. You have no desire or passion to push through. You may even feel hopeless, invaluable, and alone which are all signs of depression. In extreme cases, you may even have thoughts of suicide.
- Moodiness/ Emotional Outbursts – No one is going to be bubbly and bright all the time, however, when negative emotions come out of the blue, this may be a sign that something more is going on. Crying uncontrollably, yelling or shouting, becoming angry, frustrated, or outraged without rhyme or reason are red flags that you’re on the verge of a breakdown or are suffering emotionally.
- Difficulty Sleeping – Those who suffer from mental illnesses like anxiety find that getting to sleep is nearly impossible. If you’ve gone days in a row without sleeping or disrupted sleep, you could be dealing with insomnia. For those who sleep too much or feel tired even after getting a good 8 hours of sleep, this may be a sign of depression.
- Weight problems – When you’re not feeling right mentally, eating right can often fall by the wayside. Perhaps you’re trying to mask feelings of sadness with comfort foods and putting on weight. Or you could be skipping out on meals simply because you’re too down to eat. Either way, if you’re putting on too much weight or losing weight too quickly these could be red flags for mental illness like depression or a form of an eating disorder.
- Substance abuse – Many people who suffer from mental illness also suffer from substance abuse and addiction. In an effort to appear “normal” and mask their emotions, they begin self-medicating with drugs and alcohol. Only, this provides temporary relief causing them to use more, develop a tolerance, and eventually become addicted.
No one is expected to feel great all the time. Life can sometimes put you in moods you didn’t realize you could be in. Be that as it may, if you or someone you know has been out of sorts for several weeks, months, or years, it could be more than just a bad day or a lot of stress. They may be suffering from a mental illness and getting properly diagnosed and treated are the only solutions to reclaiming their lives.