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What is Mental Health?

According to the World Health Organization (WHO) "the treatment of disease or infirmity, by means of physical, mental, social and spiritual well-being. In defining mental health it can be said that by this, a person  realizes their abilities, comes with the confidence that they can cope with the stresses of life, be able to work productively and make a contribution to his or her community. 

In this positive sense it can also be considered  That is, by fighting and conquering this dilemma a mentally healthy person can do any job well. So it is the foundation for the effective running of a community.          

What is Mental Health?

Why is it important?

More than 450 million people suffer from mental disorders. According to the WHO, by the year 2020, depression will cause the second largest disease burden worldwide (Murray and Lopez, 1996). The global burden of mental health will be far beyond the treatment capabilities of developed and developing countries. The social and economic costs associated with the increasing burden of mental illness have focused attention on the possibilities of promoting Mental health as well as the prevention and treatment of mental illness. Therefore, mental health is closely linked to behavior and is considered a fundamental part of physical health.

Physical health and mental health are closely related and it has been unquestionably proven that depression causes heart and vascular diseases.

Mental disorders affect a person's health-related behaviors such as eating sensibly, regular exercise, adequate sleep, safe sex practices, alcohol and smoking, adherence to medical treatments, etc. and thus increase the risk of physical illness.

Social problems also arise due to mental illness such as unemployment, scattered families, poverty, drug abuse and related crimes.

Mental illness plays an important role in the decline of prophylactic activity.

Medical patients with depression are worse than patients without depression.

Chronic illnesses such as diabetes, cancer, and heart disease increase the risk of depression.

What are the difficulties in implementing it?

The feeling of stigma attached to mental illness, due to which there is discrimination against such people in every aspect in the society like education, employment, marriage etc., is the reason for delay in seeking medical help. Clinical confusion due to lack of definite signs and symptoms with ambiguity in theories of mental health and disease.

People believe that mental diseases occur in people who are mentally weak or they are caused by wandering spirits.

Many are of the opinion that mental illnesses are irreversible, leading to medical negativity.

Many believe that remedial measures may not be successful.

Many people believe that drugs used to treat mental illnesses have many side effects and can be addictive. They think that these medicines only cause sleep.

Data collected by the WHO shows that there is a large gap between the burden of mental health problems and the resources available to prevent and treat them in countries.

Until recently, in most parts of the world, the treatment of mental illness was kept away from the rest of medical and health care.

What are the causes of mental illness?

Biological factor

Neurotransmitters: Diseases have been found to be related to an abnormal balance of special chemicals called neurotransmitters in the brain.  Neurotransmitters help the brain's nerve cells communicate with each other. If these chemicals become unbalanced or do not work properly, messages do not pass through the brain properly, causing symptoms of mental illness.

Genetics (heredity): Many mental diseases are hereditary, which suggests that people who have a family member with mental illness are more likely to develop mental illness. The likelihood of getting the disease is transmitted through genes in families. Experts believe that many mental diseases are related to disorders of several genes, not just one. This is the reason that a person inherits the possibility of suffering from mental illness genetically but it is not necessary that he is suffering from the disease. Mental illness itself is caused by the interaction of a number of genes and other factors -- such as stress, bad behavior, or a tragic event -- that can affect or cause disease in a person with a genetic predisposition to it.

Infection: Some infections have been associated with brain injury and the development of mental illness or worsening of its symptoms. For example, a condition called autoimmune neuropsychiatric disorder in children related to the Streptococcus bacterium has been linked to the development of an obsessive-compulsive disorder and other mental illnesses in children.

Defects or injuries of the brain: Disorders or injuries to certain areas of the brain have also been associated with some mental diseases.

World Health Organization's response?

The World Health Organization assists governments in strengthening and promoting mental health. Which has reviewed evidence of mental health promotion and is working with governments to share this information and integrate effective strategies into policies and plans. Early childhood interventions (eg, home visits for pregnant women, pre-school psycho-social activities, joint nutrition and psycho-social support for vulnerable populations)

Support to children (eg skill building programmes, child and youth development programmes)

Socio-economic empowerment of women (eg improving access to education and microcredit schemes)

Social support for older populations (eg friendship enhancement initiatives, community and day centers for the elderly)

Programs designed for vulnerable groups, including minorities, indigenous peoples, migrants affected by conflicts and disasters (eg psycho-social interventions after disasters).

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Activities that promote mental health in schools (for example, support for ecological change in schools and child-friendly schools)

Mental health interventions at work (eg stress relief programs)

Housing policies (e.g. housing improvements)

Violence prevention programs (eg community policing initiatives); and community development programs (eg 'caring communities' initiatives, integrated rural development)

Mental patients and their families do not behave as pressure groups because they do not want to try together because of severe social stigma and ignorance of their rights.

NGOs also consider this a difficult area as it requires long-term commitment and they are afraid of dealing with mental patients.

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