The Mechanics Of Mental Health Care
The focus on mental health has expanded dramatically as we become aware of just how dangerous stress, anxiety, and depression can be, as well as how many of us cope with them. However, when it comes to treating their own mental health, a lot of people still operate on dangerous assumptions that it’s all about mood and that it can be overcome with sheer will alone. Here, we’re going to take a real look at what’s going on up there and what you should do when facing it.
Is it ever environmental?
Bad circumstances can lead to poorer mental health. It should be no surprise that if you’re stuck in a job you hate, the workplace can have a big impact on your mental health. In fact, workplace stress has become one of the more common forms as of late, with elements like overtime and uncertain work hours being huge red flags for your mental health. However, while your environment can be a root cause, changing that environment won’t necessarily mean that the issue goes away.
Your own chemistry set
Many mental health issues are caused by specific hormones influencing the chemistry of your brain. For stress, cortisol has become known as one of the key culprits. When your brain produces more cortisol, you feel more stress. In turn, improving your sleeping habits, getting outside more often, and eating certain foods have been shown to lower cortisol production as shown at self-care blog Mindbodygreen. Similarly, exercise improves the body’s production of endorphins which can raise your mood. When treating mental illness, lifestyle changes are often recommended as a way of making improvements to the brain’s chemistry.
A deeper balance
However, there are more direct ways to treat that brain chemistry, too. Much of it is down to the hormonal balance within the body, and there are a lot of things that can throw this off. Age, pregnancy, weight gain, and so on can affect your mood so dramatically because they cause hormonal imbalance. Services like local pharmacy The Healthy Choice are nowadays using treatments like bioidentical hormone replacement therapy to help alleviate the many symptoms of hormone imbalance. Beyond stress or depression, these symptoms can also be things like thyroid dysfunction, weight gain, decreased libido and more.
All in your head?
It’s now widely agreed that one of the worst things you can say to someone coping with mental health trouble is to “get over it”. You can’t flip a switch in your head to improve your emotional balance, but certain mindfulness techniques have been shown to offer real relief to many. Mindfulness-based cognitive therapy, often with meditation as the specific tool of choice, have seen mainstream acceptance as of late. Learning and applying mindfulness habits in your own life can help you manage some of the most harmful habits of a troubled mind.
There is no simple answer to mental health. Your circumstances, your brain chemistry, hormonal balance, and your mental habits all contribute to it. This means that your approach to mental health care should be just as comprehensive.