What Causes Mental Health Problems?
Symptoms of schizophrenia typically start to appear in early 20’s in men and a little later in women. Paranoia, delusional thinking and aberrant behavior are the first signs of this disease, progressing to auditory and then visual hallucinations. This is a chronic illness and will needed to be treated for the life of the patient if the diagnosis is accurate. Genetics play an important role in developing schizophrenia, and a family history of schizophrenia can be helpful in making the correct diagnosis, as schizophrenia is not a common mental illness.
Many people with schizophrenia also struggle with anxiety, depression, and abuse alcohol and drugs to manage the symptoms and cope with their severe mental health problems.
Untreated schizophrenia will likely result in hospitalization, incarceration or other poor outcomes including suicide. Medications are necessary to control the symptoms, and there are numerous medications available with different benefits and side effect profiles. Your provider will work closely with you do determine which medication or combination of medications is best for you, and order other tests such as blood work and other studies to ensure your health is monitored and addressed while taking these medications.
Typically, people have multiple episodes of depression throughout their life, although depression can occur only once. During this time, symptoms can occur most of the day, for nearly every day. Symptoms include:
For many people, these symptoms of depression cause problems with personal relationships, work, school, or social activities. Often people feel generally unhappy without knowing why.
Although children and adolescents experience many similar symptoms of depression to adults, there are some differences. Children may also refuse to go to school, be under or overweight, be irritable or clingy, and have aches and pains. Adolescents may also be angry, have poor attendance or performance in school, feel misunderstood, avoid social interaction, use alcohol or drugs, sleep or eat too little or too much, or self-harm.
Depression is not a normal part of aging. Often it may go unnoticed and undiagnosed in older adults, causing many to feel reluctant to seek help. Symptoms of depression in older adults may be less obvious, and include:
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One of the most common reasons people seek treatment when depressed is that they feel stuck. They know they should be able to move forward with their life — maybe even start a new job, get married, and have children — but something is holding them back. Depression can make it difficult for you to do the things you used to enjoy doing and make your day-to-day life more complicated. Therefore, to get on with life, you need to get treatment.
Your energy wanes when you are depressed, making all the other aspects of your life feel like they will never get better. You try to work but the effort takes you out of commission. You would rather spend time at home because it feels like there’s nothing to do or nobody needs you. The sad part is that you have no idea how much better you would feel if you got help for your situation.
If left untreated over time, depression can lead to thoughts of suicide. These thoughts are often related to the feeling of hopelessness or isolation. You may feel like you have no purpose in life, that everything is going wrong, and that there is no reason for you to be alive. Treatment can help alleviate these thoughts and make your life happier again.