One of the most discussed and controversial, yet fundamental, subjects in recent years is mental health and how to be aware of the mental state, among other topics. But it is without question that this subject deserves the attention it is getting, for mental health is the link that connects the human psyche. It affects our daily routines and even careers if not monitored and taken seriously. Mental health awareness is a sensitive topic for many people, for others, it is just something to look out for like so many other things in life, and the third group is the ones that believe that mental health is uncontrollable. It should be left as it is. And while there are many theories out there about which is the correct way of looking at it, what is most certain is that mental health has a very influential role in our lives. According to recent research from the sociology institution of London, mental health affects us at a young age. It follows us until our adulthood, with minor and significant cases in between. To help out someone that is having mental health issues, one must know how to identify the type of problem and act accordingly.

1. Mental health issues

Mental health awareness is all about informing people about the many problems they can encounter that is related to their mental state. It can also include listening to people with actual mental health disorders or the ones that have slight issues with specific situations. But to help these correctly, the problems that they might have must be identified and countered with the right treatment.

1.1 Stress and anxiety disorders

Stress is an ordinary feeling that everyone has; it is as natural as being hungry or thirsty. Its causes vary, from having problems in daily life to work challenges to raising kids and other specific reasons. Some might find it challenging to deal with stress, while others embrace it and accept that it has become a part of their lives. Anxiety disorders do not go away with time, they get worse, and they usually carry other emotions such as fear and worry. There exist several anxiety disorders, from general stress disorders that are easy to deal with, to phobias and panic disorders that are quite harder to let go. Usually, a stress disorder is perceived via symptoms such as feeling restless, muscular tension, and sleep schedule problems. Panic disorder is having sudden panic attacks and uncontrollable fear. Symptoms include heart racing, sweating, and shaking. Phobia-related disorders are a danger to mental health, and they act as this trigger whenever the person senses particular objects or when they find themselves in specific situations.

1.2 Eating disorders

Eating disorder is a widespread mental health issue that affects a wide range of people. Contrary to the common misconception that it has anything to do with the personal decisions and bias, these disorders have more to do with the environment and the eating habits that people have. Often, we find disturbances in the person’s eating schedule, or it can be related to more specific things like scents and colors. For example, people with Anorexia Nervosa think that they are incredibly overweight when they are clearly underweight, they tend to eat with minimal appetite and watch themselves in the mirror extensively because of their fear of adding on their bones, others that have Bulimia Nervosa tend to consume large amounts of food in regulated sessions, that is usually followed by many hours of exercise and water drinking.

1.3 Depression

As an overview, depression is a popular word these days due to many elements, and as is the case with any name that gets this popular, people tend to use it in the wrong contexts to describe other words. But depression as a mental health problem is a disorder that affects the way you feel about things in a negative way, and by extent, changing the way they tackle their daily tasks and experiences negatively. It can last for weeks and deal damage to the person’s self-esteem as well as his social relations, but it can also last years and give them trauma and a sense of accomplishment for getting over it. It is mostly connected to the feelings and emotions, or lack thereof. People with depression experience very low mood jumps and extreme sadness, followed by self-isolation in fear of being misunderstood or judged by others. The symptoms vary in intensity from what was mentioned to difficulties concentrating and remembering, to more severe consequences such as pain and even suicidal thoughts and death wishes out of frustration. And it is that failure that generates that affects the behavior around people and makes the person moody and resists connecting and bonding, which ultimately ruins life as they know it.These mental health issues often cause severe trauma to those who treat them lightly or don’t seek the proper help they desperately need.Related: What are the 10 keys to happiness?

2. Helping out with mental health

In the case of a specific person being in a state of denial or resisting the idea of treatment when they clearly do need it, it is best to have the people and family around them to be their help. But the thing to bear in mind is that consulting a professional and seeking help is the most efficient way of overcoming mental issues and that the sooner they are addressed, the easier and faster they are treated. But when help is not available or not an option for some people, it is best to have a couple of individuals that listen and respond with positive and constructive advice that should be based on professional views about the issue. As such, learning about mental health awareness and spreading it as well is vital in dealing with them or helping others dealing with them, and in both cases, professional help is always the best option. In some situations, being heard and taken care of is all the person needs to regain his self-esteem and shake off the doubt caused by mental health issues, and it will take some failed attempts and patience to reach the right treatment for the person. After all, the topics discussed before never affect people in the same way, and it might take days of trial and error for some people as it may take weeks and maybe months in extreme cases. But the most important thing in dealing with mental health issues is the comfort and wellbeing of the one in need of help, and they have to feel they are understood and in an environment that supports them along the way to a better self.

Originally published on Live Positively.