Symptoms of mental health issues
There is a wide range of symptoms indicating the presence of mental health issues, often termed mental health ‘disorders’, such that affect your mood, thinking and behaviour. Examples of mental health disorders include depression, anxiety disorders, schizophrenia, eating disorders and addictive behaviours.
Many people have mental health concerns from time to time; most, thankfully, are a short-term issue experienced as a result of events in one’s life. But a mental health concern can become a mental illness when ongoing signs and symptoms cause frequent stress and affect one’s ability to function normally.
Generally, a mental health concern will be considered a problem if symptoms last for 14 days or more, or are recurrent, or are immediately, partly or wholly, debilitative. Of course, mental illnesses vary in degrees of severity sometimes transitory, sometimes causing psychosocial disability requiring long-term support.*
Indeed, a mental health disorder and related symptoms can make you miserable and can cause problems in your daily life including at work and in your personal relationships. The good news is that in most cases such mental health disorders can be managed and ultimately overcome psychotherapy.* Learn more about psychotherapies >>
If you are experiencing any of the following symptoms over a period of a few weeks, or otherwise for shorter periods in a reoccurring and regular pattern, it might be time to seek out professional help. While it is never too late to seek out professional help, the sooner you do the better the possibility of assisting you alleviate your suffering.
These symptoms could indicate a mental health concern
- You constantly feel stressed and/or anxious – in a state of panic or near panic:
- You constantly feel depressed, in the sense of “dread” – you see no joy, no hope going forward:
- You find it impossible or almost impossible to get out of bed and face the day – you’re just feeling plain overwhelmed:
- Your enthusiasm and drive for getting things done is simply not there anymore:
- You dread the thought of interaction with others, even on a social level:
- You have developed feelings of self-loathing or inadequacy:
- You have sudden and unexplained weight loss – or you have suddenly started binge eating, craving unhealthy foods (excess sugar/fats) – sudden weight gain:
- You tear-up or cry for no apparent reason – hyperventilate, freeze in thought, you feel the need to escape:
- Your personal relationships are strained – you have become indifferent or unempathetic to your significant others:
- You feel disconnected from previously beloved activities – sports, hobbies, work, relationships etc’:
- You have become prone to outbursts of anger towards others for no apparent reason:
- You have started to overuse/abuse substances (alcohol /drugs) to try and help alleviate your symptoms:
- You see no meaningful purpose in your life – you question the purpose of your very existence in terms of worthlessness:
- You regularly consider, or ‘toy with’, the notion of self-harm or the harm of others – or other destructive behaviour:
- Your friends (or family) have told you they are concerned about your mental wellbeing:
- You suffer a relentless and unyielding sense of grief of a lost loved one, or of something dear to you:
- You’ve suffered a trauma and you can’t seem to stop thinking about it – reliving the trauma over and over again:
- You have unexplained and recurrent headaches, stomach-aches or a rundown immune system:
- our concentration is shot, you have trouble thinking with a clear thought process – you cannot/no-longer solve simple tasks.
If you are experiencing any of these symptoms for weeks on end, it’s a pretty sure sign that it’s time to seek out help. Importantly, if at any time you are concerned about your personal safety or the safety of another person, please contact your local hospital emergency department, or otherwise contact emergency services on 000 for immediate assistance. Where there is not an immediate emergency ‘Lifeline’ may also be able to provide assistance on 13 11 14.
*Sometimes in combination with prescribed medication, ideally, a psychiatrist.
*Nearly every diagnosis listed in the ‘Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders’ (DSM) (American Psychiatric Association) has a requirement that a problem cause significant problems in a person’s everyday life functioning, whether it be at work, at home, at school, or someplace else. Used by clinicians and researchers to diagnose and classify mental disorders, the criteria are concise and explicit, intended to facilitate an objective assessment of symptom presentations in a variety of clinical settings—inpatient, outpatient, partial hospital, consultation-liaison, clinical, private practice, and primary care.
Author: Charles Pratten
If you’ve decided it’s time to seek out a counselling, then you’ve already done the hardest part by recognising that you could use support with your mental health or an emotional issue.
To help you decide if you are ready to begin therapy, we offer a free 10-minute phone consultation in which we can discuss the problems you are experiencing and how counselling and psychotherapy might benefit you.
Of course, you will have the opportunity to ask any questions you may have, and together we can decide whether ours is the best counselling and therapy service for you.
To book your free phone consultation, please click on the button below:
The information provided on this website (www.cbtcounselling.com.au) is offered as general educational content only. The information herein should not be considered as advice, nor should it be used to treat, assess or diagnose a psychological condition, nor should it be used as an alternative to obtaining professional advice, diagnosis or assessment from a mental health professional.
In severe cases of a mental health disorder, including severe cases of any those disorders described herein, or any others such as bipolar disorder, psychosis or schizophrenia, medication may need to be prescribed to the sufferer. Only a Psychiatrist can legally prescribe medications to address such disorders, for example antipsychotic drugs and antidepressants.
If at any time you are concerned about your personal safety or the safety of another person, please contact your local hospital emergency department, or otherwise contact emergency services on 000 for immediate assistance. Where there is not an immediate emergency ‘Lifeline’ may also be able to provide assistance on 13 11 14.
Should you require any further information about our counselling and psychotherapeutic services, you can phone or email our clinic via the ‘Contact Us‘ / ‘Phone‘ buttons displayed on your screen.
Author: Charles Pratten
Principal CBT Counselling & Psychotherapy
Title: Symptoms of Mental Health Issues