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Identifying Six of the Most Common Psychological Health Conditions

We are living in a world full of stress and tensions. People are worried about their families, their careers, their relationships, and whatnot. And so, developing a psychological condition isn’t very uncommon.

But now the main question is: what to do to keep our psychological health in good shape?

Well, the first thing you need to do is to understand how to identify them. The term “psychological health” isn’t a very small term. It’s a huge umbrella that hosts many different conditions. From depression to PTSD to ADHD, there are several different ailments that we can relate to our mental health. And knowing what these ailments are, and how to identify them, can help you a lot in keeping them at bay. 

Here is a list of six of the most common psychological conditions and how to identify them.

Depression

We can define clinical depression, or a.k.a major depressive disorder, as having a bad mood that lasts for a long time. 

Bad mood, in itself, isn’t very uncommon. However, having depression is not the same as having a low phase once in a while. It is a condition in which you constantly feel low for at least a period of two weeks. The people suffering from depression struggle a lot in functioning well at work or maintaining their relationships.

The symptoms may include constant sadness, irritability, feeling of emptiness etc.. Furthermore, these people sometimes may also experience certain physical symptoms, such as insomnia, low appetite, or blurred concentration, etc.

How to manage it?

Clinical depression, if left ignored, can even last a lifetime. However, with the help of the right treatment plan, it is totally manageable. Depending upon how chronic the condition is, medicines and psychotherapy both can be used separately or in combination to treat this.

ADHD

ADHD, or Attention deficit hyperactivity disorder, is one of the most common psychological disorders, especially found in kids. It is a type of neurodevelopmental disorder that affects those parts of the brain that are used for focusing, planning, and executing various tasks. Symptoms include inattention, hyperactivity, lack of focus, and exaggerated emotions, etc.

The reason why some people develop ADHD is still not very clear. Experts suggest that heredity and genes may have a role to play here. However, the research on this topic is still not very conclusive. 

How to Treat it?

ADHD treatment includes:

  • Behavioral Therapy, which includes training for parents too; and
  • Medications

For children below the age of 6, ADHD treatment mainly focuses on parental training on behavior management, before trying any type of medicines. For kids above 6, behavior training and medication, both are used together.

Generalized Anxiety Disorder

We can say that a person is suffering from generalized anxiety disorder if he is too anxious or worried for the majority of his time for at least the last six months. Though we all get stressed at times, people with GAD can become so anxious that doing even some simple daily tasks become difficult for them. Apart from the feelings of dread and worry, these people may sometimes experience physical symptoms, such as muscle tension, lost focus, exhaustion, inability to sleep, etc.

Generalized anxiety disorder is one of the most common psychological health conditions in women.

How to manage it?

The most effective way of managing anxiety disorder is Cognitive Behavioral Therapy (CBT). This is a form of therapy that helps the patient identify, question, and change the negative thoughts and behaviors. Along with CBT, sometimes, medications are also used.

Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder

Initially, Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD) was considered a type of anxiety disorder. But now, it comes under the umbrella of trauma and stress-related psychological conditions. PTSD is a natural result of having an experience with a very unsettling or dangerous event.

After going through a traumatic experience, a person’s mind starts developing several negative thoughts. And these thoughts can have a very negative effect on their lives. The symptoms of PTSD may vary anywhere from random thoughts to flashbacks to nightmares. And these can drastically affect the way a person normally functions. Other symptoms of PTSD may include losing interest in things they previously liked, inability to love, extreme anger, etc.

How to manage it?

Just like anxiety disorder and ADHD treatment, PTSD too requires therapy and counseling as part of its treatment plan. However, the path of recovery from PTSD may vary from person to person. Furthermore, research suggests that having a support system post the traumatic event is also very important for the person to recover. Along with these, in some cases, doctors may prescribe medications too.

Panic Disorder

Panic Disorder is one of the very common types of anxiety disorder, which involves having unexpected panic attacks, repeatedly. A panic attack can be defined as a feeling of extreme anxiety, which sometimes feels like a heart attack. While suffering from panic disorder, people may have symptoms like shortness of breath, racing heart, and sometimes vomiting or nausea. Furthermore, it may also include several behavioral changes, such as avoiding places or situations where they previously experienced anxiety.

Now, you should note that having a panic attack doesn’t necessarily mean you have a panic disorder. However, if you are constantly worried about another attack, it might be a problem.

How to manage it?

There might be an overlap sometimes between mood and anxiety disorders. Therefore, the treatment methods may vary from person to person. However, here too CBT is considered a very effective way of treatment, along with medications.

Obsessive-Compulsive Disorder

Just like PTSD, the obsessive-compulsive disorder was also once considered an anxiety disorder. But now it has its own category. The term “obsessive” in OCD refers to repeated disruptive thoughts. And the way of coping with these obsessive thoughts is a certain ritual or we can say, “compulsion.” 

The obsession can be of anything from fear of germs to doubting certain things, such as if they have locked the door properly or not, or if they have switched off the gas or not. And the compulsive behavior includes washing their hands very frequently, repeated checking, etc. This type of behavior is not only very time-consuming but can also cause distress in a person’s daily life.

The major causes of OCD may include a person’s genetics, psychology, or the environment in which the person lives. Furthermore, the research on the relationship between OCD and a person’s biology is also going on. And some initial data suggests that there may be a link between the condition and certain chemicals that are found in the brain, such as serotonin.

How to manage it?

Here too, the treatment may vary from person to person. But CBT and antidepressants are the most common ways used to treat this condition.