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5 warning signs of Mental Health

The past couple years have been stressful times for everybody. Maybe you and your friends have even joked about how “crazy” things are feeling on any given day. But that begs the question: how do you distinguish mental stress, or physical illness, from early warning signs of mental health challenges? The truth is, the signs of mental health aren't always easy to read. I’m here to help you pinpoint five warning signs that might suggest you’re experiencing mental health challenges and should seek professional help.

Here are 5 warning signs of mental health challenges:

● Excessive fear or worrying

● Feeling immensely sad or low

● Confusion and lack of focus and learning

● Extreme mood swings

● Strong, or prolonged, feelings of irritability and anger

Excessive fear or worrying

It's normal to feel anxious and fearful from time to time, but if your worries and fears are so constant that they're interfering with your quality of life, then you may have an anxiety disorder. There are many different types of anxiety disorders, each with its own set of symptoms, but some common signs include excessive worry, panic attacks, difficulty concentrating, ruminating or racing thoughts, and feeling tense or overwhelmed. If you think you may have an anxiety disorder, it's important to seek help from a professional therapist who can diagnose and recommend the best treatment plan for you. There is no one-size-fits-all approach to treating anxiety disorders, but a variety of therapies have been shown to be effective in helping people manage their symptoms. So don't let extreme worrying or fear get out of control. You can get the help that you need.

Feeling immensely sad or low

A sad, or low, mood is normal from time to time. For example, you may feel low after experiencing a loss or disappointment. However, sadness that lasts for weeks or months is not normal. If you feel persistently depressed, it's important to talk to a professional. A number of different treatment options are available, and with the help of an expert, it's possible to improve your mood and quality of life. Left untreated, sadness can lead to serious problems such as depression, anxiety, substance abuse, and even suicide. So if you're struggling, don't hesitate to reach out for help.

Confusion and lack of focus and learning

Problems with confusion, focus and learning can interfere with everyday life in a number of ways. For instance, difficulty concentrating at work or school can lead to subpar performance, and feeling constantly distracted can make it difficult to complete important tasks. Confusion and inability to concentrate can be caused by a number of things, including underlying medical conditions, certain medications, stress, and sleep deprivation. However, simply understanding the potential reasons for your concentration problems can help you to better manage them. If you are struggling to focus, talk to a professional about possible causes and treatment options. Taking steps to improve your concentration and to clear up your confusion can help you to achieve your goals and live a more productive life.

Extreme mood swings

Extreme mood swings can point to a host of different mental health conditions, including bipolar disorder and chronic anxiety. However, not all instances of rapid mood swings reflect underlying psychological issues. Certain health problems, such as hypothyroidism or heart disease, can also lead to rapid and unpredictable changes in mood. Additionally, certain habits or lifestyle changes can contribute to the problem without necessarily indicating a more serious condition. For example, abusing drugs and alcohol, working long hours, and going without sleep can all cause sudden shifts that feel out of control. In short, extreme moods may or may not be cause for concern. That’s why it is crucial to seek the help of a professional to discover the culprit behind the shifts.

Strong, or prolonged, feeling of irritability and anger

Irritability is one of our human emotions. It can be both an internal and external experience, often triggered by external stressors or internal stress hormones. Whether you are feeling stressed about work, family, or finances, your irritability may be worsened by your inability to cope with these stressors in a healthy way. In addition to the feeling of being on edge or unsettled, other symptoms of irritability may include anger, frustration, anxiety, and even depression. In severe cases, irritability can even give rise to violent outbursts or self-harming behaviors. If you find that you are frequently irritable and struggle to manage your feelings in a healthy way, it may be helpful to seek out professional counseling and support. With the help of a skilled therapist, you can learn better coping mechanisms and develop healthier responses to stressful situations.

If you’re experiencing any of these 5 warning signs of mental health, please consider speaking with a professional to see what’s going on. Meeting with a therapist can offer insight on the challenges you are experiencing, new coping skills, and ways to manage strong emotions so you are still able to engage in your best life.

Please contact me to discuss what you are experiencing. You don't have to go through this alone.

Charity Wabuke, LMFT


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