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The Lifestyle Changes That Matter When It Comes to Improved Mental Health

When you are battling a mental health illness or if you are simply learning more about mental health for the sake of a loved one who is, it can be very easy to be overwhelmed by the neverending variety of treatments available. While medication and therapy are more than likely to be necessary, lifestyle changes can go a long way in helping to reduce the effects of mental illness, and treatment may also even work more effectively. Here are some lifestyle changes that can be made to benefit someone who has been diagnosed with a mental health problem.

Smoking

Almost 50% of people with mental illnesses happen to also be smokers. For many years, it was thought by therapists that smoking may be a means of release for mental health patients, helping to take the edge off in a way. For this reason, they were not pressured into quitting the habit. However, today, we know better and we know how harmful smoking really is. Quitting is no doubt a challenging prospect, and symptoms may flare initially before the benefits can be seen. Research is clear about how quitting the habit yields benefits to mental health even in a little as a few weeks after quitting. It’s understood that several toxins present in cigarettes contribute to mood swings, not to mention the array of diseases smoking increases the risk of, which takes a toll on physical health as well.

Social and Community Activities

Anyone who has cried to a friend knows how powerful of a medication friendship can be! Researchers have enough data for scientists to now value friendship in a medical way, in a biological way. The chances are higher for an isolated individual to experience issues with mental health.  Studies show that even one day out a week with friends can improve a person’s mood for many days. More socializing can be achieved by joining in on community service, helping you feel connected and overall more satisfied. Finding a comfortable level of socialization is the point in key here, not forcing connections.

Relationships

We’ve heard it before – love yourself before you love someone else. Know yourself before you get into romance. See to your mental health before getting into a commitment. Yes, it is most definitely true that entering a relationship is no solution for anything, much less mental health issues, but it has been shown through research that healthy romantic relationships make a significant difference in the mental health of people! People can benefit by avoiding anxiety, neurotic behavior, and more. Bad relationships are easy to identify because if a person brings out the good in you, you will know it. Get rid of bad relationships and seek healthy, good relationships to enjoy a better lifeless riddled by mental health troubles.

Abuse

It really should go without saying that if abuse is a part of your life in any way or form whatsoever, you are asking for trouble – especially if you are dealing with poor mental health on top of it all. Escaping any form of abuse is the first step, and then putting the pieces together through therapy and self-love and self-care is the next. Seek help to pick up and move on, and don’t feel bad for leaving toxic and abusive relationships, whether they are romantic, platonic or familial or anything else. Your mental health is your priority so that you can be a better person for yourself and also for the ones you love.

Sleep

It isn’t the amount of sleep alone that is important, though it certainly holds significance, it is also the quality of sleep and the regularity of it. A healthy sleep of regular nature and of good quality is necessary to ensure the best mental health and to avoid flare-ups from existing conditions. The key to getting this right is setting a bedtime and falling into a routine. Figure out what number of hours is right for you (usually between 7 and 9) and set a time for your alarm. You will benefit in many ways from this, so you will be pleasantly surprised after a few months!

Good mental health is irreplaceable. Caring about your mind is a very important part of wellbeing and should not be neglected in any way. Your lifestyle has an effect on how you feel and how you feel can trigger all sorts of responses if you have mental health diseases, so the answer lies in controlling these lifestyle factors to make life easier and your condition more manageable.

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