Signs & Symptoms
Mental ill-health impacts many of our lives, often without us even realising it, simply due to being unaware of the signs and symptoms. In reality many of the signs or symptoms of mental health can be subtle as they involve normal behaviour, emotions, thoughts and physical feelings. The key is to notice something which is out of character for you.
With mental health we need to recognise that normal is highly subjective but you know what is normal for you!
Indigestion or stomach-ache
Loss of appetite or overeating
Joint or back pain
Trouble sleeping or change in sleep patterns
Visible tension or trembling
Nervous or fast speech
Neck or throat pains
Constantly feeling cold
Feeling worried or distressed
Loss of motivation
Loss of humour
Distracted or confused
Irrational or illogical though processes
Difficulty processing information
Thoughts of self-harm
Responding to external sensations or objects other people cannot see
Increased alcohol intake
Increased or start using recreational drugs
Withdrawal from friends or normal social interaction
Increased irritability, anger or aggression
Over excitement or euphoria
Late for appointments or leaving early
Working longer hours
Obsessive or intense activity
Repetitive speech or activity
Increase sickness or absence from work
Relationship problems at work
Over reaction to events or problems
Disruptive or anti-social behaviour
Stress is your body’s way of responding to any kind of demand. It can be caused by both good and bad experiences and when people feel stressed by something going on around them, their bodies react by releasing chemicals into the blood. It is said that there is typically ‘Good’ and ‘Bad’ stress, some people are most productive when they are put under pressure and in highly stressful situations, however, when stress is having a negative impact on your life at work, home, in relationships, financially and even physically, for a consistent period of time, then it is time to take action.
To better understand Mental Health as a an individual, you really should have an understanding of your own mental health, how you manage your own stress levels or what is known as ‘Stressors’, identifying who you are and why you have the thoughts, values and belief systems that you do.
We all have our down days, get stressed or feel overwhelmed by what life has thrown at us - good mental health is not about feeling happy 100% of the time. We are allowed to not be able to cope sometimes. What is important is that we recognise when we need help, seek help and develop our coping mechanisms.
Identify what your stressors are - regardless of size
identify what coping mechanisms work for you (but keep an eye on the unhealthy ones such as drinking)
learn to accept the things you cannot change and identify what needs to be done about things you can
ask for help - we all need the support of others from time-to-time